Let me start by saying, I live in Florida and my parents live(d) in Vermont.
My mother and father had a mortgage with Citizens Bank. My dad died 10/23/10 and my mother was in the hospital. I was in Vermont helping with things at that time.
Citizens Bank called about payment, I explained the situation (and that my mother would be getting to her financial business when she got out of the hospital). I wrote the check out and had my mother sign it. All was right with the world again.
I returned to Florida in late November, but booked a flight back to Vermont, as my mother was still in the hospital when I left and I felt I needed to get Power of Attorney and take over her bills until she was better.
Sadly, after having flown my mother down to Florida (with her money) so I could care for her in my home, my mother passed away 1/23/11. I had to return north to arrange for her funeral and start the paperwork to become executor to her estate.
I contacted the people that needed to be contacted and explained the situation. Everyone was understanding and sympathetic. However, the day after I contacted Citizens Bank a very rude woman called asking for, first my dad, and then my mom. It was Citizens Bank. I could not believe these people! Even after I told her the situation, she was coarse and rude. She told me to fax the death certificates and executor paperwork as soon as I was named.
After returning home, my sister, who lives down the road from my parent's house and stops in frequently, called to tell me on 2/25/2011 that Citizens Bank called and I needed to call them. I did and spoke at great length with Shayla, who told me to fax both death certificates, my driver's license, my contact information, and a note asking what I can do to keep the account in good standing until the paperwork gets through the courts (how customer friendly is that!?!). I did all of that on 2/25/11.
Thankfully, I had received a check from my mother's insurance and was able to pay all the bills due (I am still waiting for the court to name me executor).
I paid Citizens Bank's February payment (due the 10th) and March's payment on 3/4/2011.
Yesterday, 3/7/2011, I receive two letters from Citizens Bank, one addressed just to my dad and one addressed to both my parents demanding they contact them within 10 days of the date of letter (dated 2/28/11, mailed 3/1/11) or they would turn the account over to a collection agency! My mother and father never paid these people late and have $8000 in one of their local branches. It wasn't like this was a problem account...not to mention the fact that I had spoken to numerous people there explaining the situation AND faxed everything their employee asked me to fax!
Needless to say, I called them in a rage. I did not call the number on the threatening letter, as it is their Consumer Counseling Dept. and I did not need help with paying my bills...although I will probably need counseling after dealing with these inept buffoons.
After dialing and connecting to their automated service, I had to put in my father's social security number so they could "better serve me" and waited for, “The next available representative”. Lynn was finally available.
I told her I wanted to speak with a supervisor. She needed the account number I was calling about...thanks for serving me better. I gave it to her and she stated she would take a look at the account. I told her no, that I wanted to speak to a supervisor for the reasons listed above.
After some back and forth, she said she needed to connect me to the 'correct' department and asked what kind of loan it was dealing with (did she not just get the account number?!?)...I told her it was a mortgage. She transferred me to Denise...in the Customer Counseling Dept!
Denise requested the account number, which I gave her. I told her I didn't need to speak to someone about anything other than the fact that I had notified them numerous times over the phone of the situation and had even faxed over all the things listed above and now I just wanted to speak to someone about the threatening letters and ineptitude of their bank. We had a few more back and forths.
Denise then told me that they had received the faxed death certificates...to which I responded that I knew that, that wasn't the point and that I wanted to speak to a supervisor about the things listed above. She then interrupted me to tell me they had received payment (which I had already told her I had paid with the insurance money); I again went over why I was calling and when she interrupted me the 3rd time, I finally screamed at her...asking her what part of, I know they received the death certificates and payments and that I just wanted to speak to a supervisor, did she not understand?!?
Finally, and very condescendingly, she agreed to get one; asking several times if I would mind being put on hold...each time I told her that would be fine as long as I would be speaking with a supervisor.
After about 5 minutes, Ms. Jennifer comes on the line and informs me that I have contacted the wrong department...to which I tell her, "No, one of your employees transferred me here!" She then tells me that this is the auto loan department (but, Denise told me it was the Customer Counseling Dept?!?) and she would need to transfer me to the mortgage department and to please bear with her and she would supply me that number as well, in case I needed to call back.
She was stumbling over herself because she was lying through her teeth...and, after more hemming and hawing, starts to give me an 800 number, which I finished for her because it was the number I had called initially...she then ignored what I had said and asked to put me on hold to get the number.
When she came back to the phone, she gave me an 877 number (877-754-7366) and was mumbling something about everyone still thinks this department deals with all loans...an email had been sent out, but she guessed not everyone had read their email...to which I responded that that was why I was calling...information given to that bank seems to fall into a black hole.
She then tells me she will transfer me to the correct department.
I'm on hold again waiting for, "The next available representative". Finally Donna answers. She asks for the account number. I calmly give her the account number, my name, and that I'm calling about my deceased parent's account. I also inform her that I have already spoken to Lynn, Denise, and Ms. Jennifer as well as numerous other employees on different occasions and I am just trying to talk to a supervisor. She asks if I can verify who I am by giving her my home address, phone number, and last 4 of my social security. I tell her I have faxed all that information to them and she should be able to see my parent's death certificates and all the other things I faxed and to put a supervisor on the phone. She then says she would just like to get a few bits of...I finally just told her that I would contact my lawyer and hung up.
I have not dealt with one employee there that gave me the confidence I was dealing with a professional business. They are a waste of space and as soon as the executor paperwork comes through, we are paying off the mortgage and pulling all my parent's money out of their bank.
I can only hope my parents insured the mortgage against their death...which might explain why they are so eager to put a loan that has been in outstanding status into a delinquent status for a payment 15 days late.
Update: I just received another letter today, dated 3/1/2011, addressed to my father stating, “This letter shall confirm that your recent Name Change request has been received and submitted for processing...” What is wrong with these people?!?