Two summers ago I decided to convert my Bank of America Traditional IRA to a TD Ameritrade Roth IRA. The reps at Bank of America told me that I needed to first convert the Traditional IRA into a Roth IRA at Bank of America and then I could transfer it out.
Yesterday I received a letter from the IRS stating that I owe them $20,624 for “early distributions” from two IRAs. Apparently, Bank of America sent two Forms 1099-R to the IRS stating that I took two full distributions (one from the Traditional IRA during the conversion and one from the Roth IRA during the transfer) from the same lump sum of cash. Add in two years of interest and penalties and that gives me an effective tax rate of 93.6% for retirement distributions that I never actually took.
In the end I will get this resolved, but in the meantime, now I have to pay a CPA to help me resolve the issue.
Three months ago, I was surprised to find out that my personal rent check, which I had set up auto bill pay from my personal checking account, was sent from one of my business accounts, resulting in an accounting nightmare and will cause my extreme pain when I go to file my taxes next year.
Thinking that this was an error on my part, I quickly corrected it in Bank of America’s bill pay program.
Today I found out that once again Bank of America sent the check from the incorrect account. If only they knew how much their seemingly minor screw-ups make my life so incredibly difficult.
Three weeks ago I called my former local Bank of America branch (Harper’s Farm Road, Columbia, MD) to open up another business checking account. The reason I called and didn’t walk-in was because I am stationed on a military base several hundred miles from the nearest Bank of America branch.
I could have opened an account with another bank, but since I already had six bank accounts and three credit cards with Bank of America, I figured it would be easier just to open up my new account with them. Oh how wrong I was.
The customer service representative told me that she couldn’t help me unless I could physically come into the branch office. I told her I wouldn’t be back in Columbia, MD until February 2015. She told me that an alternative would be to open the account online.
I went onto the Bank of America website to open the account. I filled out all of the required forms and hit submit. Several days later, I received an e-mail asking me to submit articles of declaration. I immediately submitted the forms via e-mail. A few days after that, I received another e-mail asking me to complete the required Bank of America form, sign it, and e-mail it in. Why these forms weren’t made available to me when I first submitted the application, nor were they mentioned in the first e-mail, I have no idea. Several days later, I received a third e-mail telling me to submit my articles of declaration. At this point I was furious. I resubmitted all of the forms via e-mail and wrote a note about how this was the third time I was submitting them and I had been waiting two weeks already for this account to be open.
At the end of the third week, I received an e-mail telling me that my account could not be opened and if I wanted more information, I should call them. So I called them. I waited on hold for 45 minutes and eventually gave up. Then I called several hours later. When I spoke to the representative, I was told that I needed to submit a utility bill in order to verify the address. I told them that I didn’t have any utility bills because I don’t have any utilities because I told have any checking accounts. The woman on the phone didn’t understand.
Looks like I’ll be opening my account elsewhere. As soon as I can, I will be closing my other Bank of America accounts and moving them elsewhere as well.
Today I tried to make a deposit via my iPhone. Why didn’t I just go down to the bank and make the deposit myself? Well, I am currently serving in the US Army in a state that doesn’t have a Bank of America. According to Google Maps, I am 1 hour and 14 minutes from the nearest Bank of America, and I need to get approval from my commander to cross state lines. So, when I receive a check in the mail, I attempt to deposit it via my iPhone. Well apparently, there is some cap on how much you can deposit every month. This is the 6th of the month, so it looks like I will be waiting until next month just to make my deposit.
Luckily, the last few weeks have been heart-burn free of Bank of America problems. However, today I received a phone call from one of my clients asking why I haven’t deposited their check yet. Sure enough, it was a check that I had deposited into my Bank of America account. Actually, I deposited it twice!
First I deposited it using the iPhone app on Jan. 09, 2013. At the end of January, I received my statement and noticed that the check hadn’t been deposited, so I deposited it again on Feb. 03, 2013. Sure enough, it didn’t deposit the second time, even though the app assured me that the deposit would go thru.
Of course, far be it from Bank of America, who sends me about 10 pounds of wasted trees a month, to somehow notify my by phone, text, e-mail, or snail-mail that something is wrong with the check and I would need to deposit it the old fashion way.
I am morally opposed to class action lawsuits because most people who sign up for them really weren’t harmed and just fill out the paperwork for the prospect of “free money”. Meanwhile the only people who really make money from them are the lawyers involved on both sides.
However, in this case, I have the opportunity to screw Bank of America…so this document did not go straight into the shredder. I’m still deciding whether or not I feel right about filling it out and sending it in.
I closed another Bank of America account today. The process was surprisingly easy and I did it all by chatting with a rep online, meaning that I saved myself about an hour of my life. Here is an excerpt from the chat session:
Marcella: I regret to hear that you want to close your account. Marcella: May I know the reason for the account closure? You: Because I hate Bank of America in every possible way.
I opened a new business account. Several days later, I noticed there was $3,100 in the account, but it wasn’t debited from the other business account. Being the moral person that I am, I sent Bank of America an e-mail notifying them of the error.
Why not spend the money? Let’s see how this will play out:
I spend the money.
Bank of America realizes the error.
Bank of America later withdraws $3,100 from my account.
I needed to change my legal address because I am moving. I sent an e-mail to a rep at my local Bank of America banking center detailing all of the changes. I emphasized that I am very busy and would like to have the paperwork ready when I arrive. I received an e-mail back a few hours later telling me that the paperwork is complete and all I need to do is come in and sign it.
When I went into the banking center, I spent two hours of my life sitting across the table from a rep while he made the changes. Not only did I lose two hours of my life, but didn’t do the address change on two of my accounts and for one account, he changed the account address but not the debit card address, making the debit card completely unusable.