Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Don't talk to ME about the evils of socialism...

(THE SCENE: Andrew's local TD/CanadaTrust. Andrew enters and approaches the woman sitting behind the Information Desk, completely unaware that the desk's name is intended ironically.)


INFO WOMAN: Hello. How can I help you today?

A: Yeah, I just noticed this last couple of weeks that when I cash a cheque, you guys are only letting me have 200 dollars until it's "verified", which has never happened before in the four years I've been banking here. And I'm just wondering why.

IW: Yes, if you read the terms of service, you'll see that the bank has the right to alter what it will clear at any time.

A: That's fine, I'm just wondering why they chose to alter it now.

IW: Have you had any credit problems recently?

A: Well, yeah, but they were worse when I got the account. If anything, this has been a better year than most. for that stuff.

IW: Usually they make changes because your credit rating's changed.

A: Is that what happened this time?

IW: I don't know.

A: Can you check?

IW: Can I see your banking card and some ID?

(An expression of weary resignation as Andrew supplies bank card and ID. She types in the various information and confirms that Andrew is, in fact, Andrew. After five minutes of looking at Andrew's file:)

IW: It says here they changed the clearance at the end of September.

A: I know when it changed.

IW: If you cash a cheque now, it'll let you have 200 dollars.

A: I know that, too. What I want to know is why it changed.

IW: The terms of service say it can be changed at any time.

A: I understand that. I just want to know why it was changed now

IW...It doesn't say.

A: It doesn't say? So you're telling me someone just arbitrarily decided to downgrade the amount cheques will clear.

IW: Well, obviously they had a reason.

A: That's my file onscreen, right?

IW: Yes.

A: Does it give a reason?

IW: No.

A: That doesn't strike me as very obvious.

IW: They do have the right to make the change at any time.

A: I never said they didn't. I just want to know why they made the change.

IW: I can't tell you.

A: Who can?

IW: A manager. Maybe.

A: OK. Can I talk to a manager?

IW: Managers don't come in till noon.

A: All right. So the problem is with getting the cheque verified, right?

IW: Right.

A: How long does it take to verify a cheque?

IW: Five business days.

A: Why?

IW: Why what?

A: Why does it take that long?

IW: I don't know. That's just as long as it takes.

A: With all the advancement in computers, it takes five days to verify a cheque from an account in another bank in the same city.

IW: Right.

A: (headache increasing...rage...GROWING...) You could call the other bank right now, couldn't you?

IW: I could...

A: So if I get in line over there and have the teller call the bank that issued the cheque and verify it, I can have all the money right now, right?

IW: Yes. Well, maybe. Other banks won't usually verify cheques.

A: Really? I've done it before.

IW: There's privacy issues now.

A: So you're telling me there's literally NO WAY I can get this cheque cashed and get my money right now. None.

IW: No.

A: You realize that, after twenty years of having a bank account, you guys - not you, personally, I know you're doing the best you can in what I'm sure is a very uncomfortable situation - in that time, banks havemanaged to make banking both more expensive AND less efficient.

IW: I understand your frustration.

(To demonstrate how much she understands, she hands Andrew a copy of the terms of service, with the portion stating that the bank can change things at any time circled.)


TD Canada Trust posted record earnings of $644 million in the third quarter, up 8% over the same period last year



No comments: