When Paul Kelleher called Bank of America to let them know his mother had died, the BoA rep tried to get Paul to pay off her account, even though he’s not legally obligated to. When he pointed out that BoA could go through the standard probate procedure like everyone else, the rep tried a different approach:
CSR: Oh, that’s really not the way to look at it. I know that if it were my mother, I’d pay it. That’s why we’re in the banking crisis we’re in: banks having to write off defaulted loans.
TalkingPointsMemo tracked down a former Bank of America CSR to ask whether this was a rogue employee or standard procedure. Can you guess the answer?
The former rep, who worked until quite recently at B of A’s Belfast, Maine-based collections unit, described for TPMmuckraker a system in which staffers responsible for making collections were routinely encouraged to mislead customers or those calling on their behalf, and were financially incentivized to do all they could to get payments.
Kelleher’s reported conversation, the former rep said, “sounds like how I would have attempted to collect” in such a situation. “I would have asked: ‘How do you plan on paying for this?’”
Remember, you’re not responsible for your dead parents’ credit card bills. And they probably didn’t cause the financial crisis, no matter what the credit card company tells you.