Bank Issues... Mostly Sorted

Ok, so as I've told you, I came to the US to deal with horrendous bank issues that my ridiculous bank will only let me deal with in person.

So last night I arrived in NY, got picked up by a friend in Queens, had a BBQ at her house, then went to another good friend's house to sleep and stayed up late into the night to catch up.

In the morning, I took the train from Queens to Brooklyn to go to the bank. I decided not to pay for cell phone service while I'm here since everything is ridiculously overpriced and I can manage without for my trip, using wifi when it's available and the rest of the time going without. But since I didn't have internet service, I decided to take the train from Queens to Brooklyn, even though there were buses that would have been quicker, since I found the train more forgiving with info about transfers posted in a large map on the wall, and if I messed up and went the wrong way, I could easily fix it and get to where I needed to go. Lots of nostalgia since I took that train many times when I lived in NY.

Once I got to the bank, it was kinda anticlimactic. I get all the way there, ask to change my address, phone number, email, and signature with my account and that all went super smoothly.
But the thing is... I opened a USAA account and want to do all my banking there, since I heard it really has the best terms for everything bank related and I'm eligible since my dad was in the military. But last night, when I arrived at my friends house, I saw I got flagged by USAA's security department and they wanted verification of who I was, for me to send my picture ID and my social security card, and only then would they open my account.

So unfortunately when I arrived at the bank today and wanted to transfer it to USAA I called them up and they told me that my account there was still flagged for security purposes, that it takes a full 24 hours for it to be unlocked once they got my information. So I couldn't even transfer my money from my account there.

Nor did Apple Bank allow me to even order a new debit card. They said they have to wait 10 days after an address change to even order the card. So I didn't even have a way to get a card at all while I'm here... But at least I was able to draw cash to get by.

They also told me that in order to close the account I'll need to show up in person, so I'm hoping that by the time I'm back in New York again next week my USAA account will be available and I'll transfer my funds there and close the account. As I left the bank I mentally ticked off the various items on my to do list at the bank and I was pretty sure I got them all done.

Ok so that taken care of, I got together with another friend for lunch, and we had a great time. And then I realized that I got no paperwork from the bank about my address change and I needed paperwork about that, so decided to go back to the bank.

And oh boy I'm glad I did.

Because they printed my bank statement and the first thing I saw across the top was the address of my ex brother in law, the reason I was changing my address to begin with, because I don't want my debit card being sent to my soon to be ex's family, because I haven't spoken to them in over a year, can't ask them to do me any favors, etc...

I was very confused. "I literally just was here in the bank an hour ago changing my address, but it's the same exact address now."
The account manager tells me that I did change my address, but what I'm seeing over there is the mailing address. That didn't help my confusion.
"I changed my address, you're saying I did, but it looks exactly the same."
"Yes, you changed your address but this is your mailing address."
"#$@&$#" (OK I didn't actually curse but this is my written approximation of being flabbergasted.) And then it hit me. (OK I'm a little tired, I didn't sleep so well last night so I have an excuse.)
"Ma'am, are you saying there's two addresses on this account, a mailing address and a regular address?"
"This is your account, shouldn't you know that? Why should I need to tell you?"
I tried explaining to her that I've been locked out of my account for months and she still just kept on repeating that it's my account, I should know whats on it. So then I asked her why the account manager I dealt with earlier didn't tell me there were two addresses on the account and ask me which I wanted switched, and again the account manager just repeats "It's your account, we shouldn't have to tell you this information about it."
I literally was banging my head against a wall again and again and finally they removed my brother in law's address from the account and there's just one address on the account, the address I wanted, and they printed up a bank statement with my updated address.

I am so ridiculously happy I went back to get a printout, because had I not, I wouldn't have realized that I was left in almost the same position as I was in earlier, with the address I didn't want on the account being there.

After that, I went with my friend to her house for a bit, and then took the train to meet friends for dinner, one of whom graciously paid for my meal while I was in the bathroom. We had a great time, and then I realized when checking my greyhound ticket info that it needed to be printed and couldn't be used over the phone. I asked the restaurant manager if it was possible to print there but their printer had no connection to the internet.
Fortunately we were a few blocks away from the public library, my old haunt when I lived in the area, that had computers and internet and printers, and my friends with me had library cards so we were able to use them to print my bus ticket.
Then I took the subway to Port Authority, the central bus station in Manhattan, where the greyhound buses leave. I had looked into different busing options to Cleveland but the only one that was going when I needed to go was Greyhound, so I booked that, didn't matter what the price was.

On the way to Port Authority I got to see some great performers including some that did acrobatics on the moving subway car. It was awesome and so quintessentially the New York experience.

I'm writing this from the bus now, free wifi fortunately, and will be arriving in the AM. I slept a few hours and will be attempting to go back to sleep as soon as I finish writing this.

Wish me luck! (Last night it took me 2 hours to fall asleep...)

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal


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  1. I bank at Navy Federal Credit Union, They are used to dealing with members around the world and are a joy to deal with. I hope your USAA account is similar.

  2. I have been following you for years. I am in awe of your resilience and generosity of spirit. I also have mental health issues but spent a lot of energy trying to hide them. Congratulations for facing and overcoming so much, and gathering good friends along the way. And thank you for being an inspiration.

  3. I'm glad this is getting done. So complicated. Enjoy

  4. That rep you spoke to deserves to be disciplined! I would have asked to speak to someone else. I admire your perseverance though. And I have to say your incredible, albeit frustrating, adventure has helped me! I didn't know if your parent was in the military you qualified to join a credit union like that or that there was a navy credit union - thanks to Eilat. I'm an ex air force brat and a navy vet so I'll have to look into that.

    I always admire how you just keep plugging away with such determination and class. I hope your in laws will have a little class and not treat you horribly. That being said, I hope you have a good time in Cleveland - yay Ohio! And a safe trip back to NY and then home.

    1. My in laws didn't do anything to me, its just awkward is all.

  5. We ONLY bank with USAA. One they get your account open, you will love them. We have had them for over 25 years - my dad was in the military, and then I married someone in the military. We have everything with them.

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