Bank Pekao SA / bank account
Last Wednesday December 12, 2018, I traveled to Warsaw from Ukraine. Last Thursday Dec 13, 2018, I visited your bank at Grzybowska 53/57, Warsaw Poland. After completing all required information, I was told that an investigation must be performed before approval of a bank account. I was told that because my surname is "Green", that I am a politician and needed to be investigated before your bank would consider allowing me to open a bank account at your bank. I am not a politician, I have never been a politician, I am not related to a politician and I don't know why your bank would think that.
On Friday Dec 14, 2018 I visited your bank four times just to be told my ability to open an account was denied. I was told you do not allow Americans living in Ukraine who are married to a Ukrainian citizen to open an account at your bank. This is discrimination! Your bank discriminates against Americans and Ukrainians. How is it possible that a bank in Poland is so unprofessional and does not follow international laws for discrimination? How is it possible bank employees don't speak English? In order for a bank employee to understand why I even traveled to Poland, they had to find an employee from another bank to translate in English. Slava was the bank employee who translated.
Both my wife and I went to the bank. My wife understands a great deal of the Polish language. She was able to help translate as well. She also confirmed what they had told us. The security department flagged my application because they first thought I was a politician. The bank branch Bank Pekao SA located at Grzybowska 53/57 Warsaw, Poland and is the main branch of this financial institution. The reason why I traveled to Warsaw to open a bank account is because the bank personnel instructed me too! I need a bank that is approved by the U.S. Government to accept Social Security deposits. The correspondence with bank personnel confirmed in writing that there would be no problem in opening a bank account at Bank Pekao SA in Warsaw Poland. However, some in their security department decided to ignore the banks policies and decline my ability to open an account.
To confirm what the personnel at the main branch told us, we went to another branch of the Bank Pekao SA in Warsaw. We explained what had happened when we attempted to open an account and were told no. This bank manager spoke perfect English. We had no problem communicating with him. He was able to speak with an individual in the Bank Pekao SA security department. He was able to confirm that our ability to open an account had been denied because I am American and my wife is Ukrainian. This is discrimination. This bank discriminates and it is simply shocking. This manager told us that he was shocked and had never heard of this before. He told us that there are many Americans with bank accounts at Bank Pekao SA. The manager told us that they security personnel did not have any knowledge of doing any transactions with the United States Social Security Department.
Before visiting the second bank, we went to the U.S. American Embassy in Warsaw. I met with Embassy personnel and explained what had happened. They were shocked. The Embassy personnel told me that they have dozens of Americans married to Ukrainians who live in Ukraine and receive Social Security payments monthly. In fact, before traveling to Poland, I was instructed to contact Bank Pekao SA to open a bank account. When I contacted the Bank Pekao SA in Warsaw, Poland, I was informed that they are approved by the American Government to accept payments. I was told they would be happy to open a bank account for this purpose. I was directed to a web page on their web site to download the document for this purpose.
I am a legal resident of Ukraine and the Bank Pekao SA does business with Ukrainians everyday. They even offer a handbook in Ukrainian to make the banking with their bank understandable. The handbook can be found at https://www.pekao.com.pl/binsource/f/64/22/5/bin_P1K0ea59494737f603b264225, BINFILE, EN, 1, 0, 0/Przewodnik_Pekao24_UK.PDF
Here is the original email letter sent to bank personnel at Bank Pekao SA.
On Thu, Mar 15, 2018 at 2:02 PM, Bank Pekao SA wrote:
> Hello. I am an American citizen living with my Ukrainian wife in Mykolaiv Ukraine. I am retired. I receive Social security benefits by by paper check. I cannot deposit my funds in my bank account in Ukraine. Is it possible to open a bank account at your bank, obtain a debit card and have my Social Security funds electronically deposited into your bank while I live in Ukraine? Thank you for your help. W. Green
> Dear Sir
> We kindly inform, that you can open account in our Bank.
> In our offer we have Konto PrzeKorzystne. If you have income in minimal amount 500 PLN and you make once in a mounth purchase with debit card, you don't pay anny fee: for this account and debit card.
> We also have an account Eurokonto Walutowe in USD, EUR, CHF or GBP.
> Required documents for opening account are: Polish national identity card or foreign passport (or if you are citizen of the European Union a valid document confirming his identity and citizenship and entitling them to enter the territory of Polish Republic) and / or resident card that contains a permit to settle, possibly separate permit to settle, Polish passport along with another document containing the address (for information).
We have also electronic banking, we called it: Pekao24 services. It can be started to the specified accounts of Eurokonto.
> Signing of agreement take place at the Branch Bank. You will receive a customer number and PIN will be set up by phone or will be sent by SMS message. You will also select the method of authorize at the Branch.
> When you have a customer number and PIN, you can log in all the sites Pekao24. During first logon in PekaoInternet you should make password to this site.
> More information about electronic banking You can find on our website:
> http://www.pekao.com.pl/vip/electronic_banking/Pekao24/?s, main, language=EN
> If you are interested our offer we invite you to the one of our Branch.
> A current list of branches is available on the Bank's website: https://www.pekao.com.pl/placowki_bankomaty
> Sincerely Yours
> Katarzyna Pawlak
> Bank Pekao S.A.
As you can see, the bank assured me that they could open a bank account. I gave the bank personnel all of the required information to open an account. They never told me about discrimination at their bank. The trip to Poland cost me $2, 000USD. Why does Bank Pekao SA in Warsaw Poland act so unprofessionally? Clearly, they do not educate their employees properly. They are poorly trained.