Thursday, August 6, 2009

PNC bank..... might want to re-think that account

Okay, this is my blog and I'll vent if I want to. Prepare for a rant regarding a local Pennsylvania bank. For most of my 6.3 readers, this will mean nothing and you should just pass by with eyes averted. If you have stumbled on this post while you are researching banks ... read on and take note.


The situation: I have sort of inherited an older gentleman. It's a long story, but the result is I get to deal with his finances and business. That is the part of the story that matters here. I inherited him when his wife passed away. She was very important in my life, and his care just results from that.

In the mix is their business, now his, and their bank accounts, now his... or that's what most people would think. The estate is very simple, and can be summed up in a few sentences. All their stuff is now his stuff, and that's how the will reads. Joint ownership of everything reverts to sole ownership. Simple, and that's good. Simple is easier and means less I need to deal with.

All that is fine... right up until it comes time to deal with PNC bank, where their accounts are. It will very soon be 'were', but meanwhile PNC has created some massive headaches for no reason that sounds.... honest. I'll have to bullet point the problems, just to keep it straight for myself....

  • On the day we told them of the woman's passing, they froze the business account. There was no warning, and a promised phone call from them on how it would be handled never happened. I just discovered the frozen account when I tried to access it on-line. Doing so without warning.... that was nasty. The business credit card system deposits in that account.... and they know that.
  • When asked about it (the same day) no clear answer was given. The best I can understand.... I think they want the estate 'probated' before they give the money back to the rightful owner (the old gentleman). The thing is... NOTHING else in the estate requires probate, and probate will cost more than what's in the account. PNC knows this.... and as close as I can gather their plan was just to keep the money.
  • I considered it my duty to make an effort to resolve the issue... so I asked to speak with the bank manager. I was told she'd be back in an hour... so I cooled my heals at the store while I waited (it was closed that day). What I got was not a call to set up a meeting, but a call at the end of the day saying she was leaving for the day. How helpful. On the other hand.... it relieved me of my perceived duty to resolve the issue without animosity (and the state banking commission).
  • Today.... I go on-line to check his personal account. I have been using it via on-line bill paying to take care of the gentleman's obligations, scheduling bill paying a month out in advance. This morning... the account has vanished. I can only assume they have frozen THIS account as well. What makes this truly heinous is that I made a large cash deposit in this account just a few days ago and THEY DIDN'T BOTHER TO SAY ANYTHING THEN! They happily took the man's money, knowing they were going to freeze the account. Not a simple error, as I asked bank management if it was okay for me to make the deposit, and she stood by while I did so, and said she would have the manager call me.
As it stands now, I'm not sure how this will play out. I was competent enough to withdraw the bulk of the man's funds after the first account was frozen without notice, and to help him open new accounts at a bank with more integrity and a better reputation. The amounts in the PNC accounts are not large, as a result, but their actions are still unconscionable. A new business account in a different bank is now active, and new credit card services will be in place by this afternoon (with luck).
The damage caused to the business and the old gentleman by PNC bank has been mitigated for the most part.

I can offer this advice to those researching banks for new accounts.... think LONG and HARD before opening an account with PNC bank.


Have a nice day (g).


Crucis said...

Know a friendly lawyer? Perhaps a new one who's hungry?

They'd eat this up. All my bank accounts were created dual ownership---me and my wife. I believe that is normal in most states.


Anonymous said...

PNC does suck. we stopped using them several years ago, when they slapped a maintenance fee on the Bear's small savings account that managed to eat all of said savings.

William said...

Great. They just were allowed to buy my bank. Not that I would recommend anything like this, of course, but a fresh (inanimate) skunk locked in a safety deposit box has been known to do wonders as nature takes its course...