Last week, I shared with you a statement in an insurance renewal policy that explained my credit score was based on the fact that my credit card was 215 months, rather than more than 216 months old.
This week, I’ll share a sentence from a letter regarding a checking account that has to be far older than 216 months. The account has outlived four transfers of bank ownership. Somewhere along the line a Cash Reserve Line Account, also known as overdraft protection, was added. I may or may not have signed up for this, but I don’t use it and don’t pay any particular attention to it.
According to the letter, “under the terms of your Account agreement, your Account is subject to a $3 monthly fee. We have been waiving this fee and, as detailed below, will be replacing it with a $36 annual fee.” As detailed below, the fee will be collected monthly. Math is not my strong suit, but even I can do this one in my head: $3 a month.
The next sentence, though, is what is throwing me: “Please note: Nothwithstanding the addition of an annual fee to your Account, because of your other account relationship(s) with [name of bank omitted], we are waiving this fee.”
English is my strong suit, but try as I might to diagram this sentence, I’m puzzled over whether they plan to charge me. I think not, but …
Later this week, I’ll call the bank to find out – and cancel this account. In the meantime, you go ahead and guess which way it’ll turn out. Then, for those of you quick to blame unsophisticated consumers for getting into difficult financial messes, think about whether dealing with financial institutions is all that clear and transparent.