Don’t lend your debit card to friends or family to pay their DirecTV bill if you don’t want to be on the hook if they fail to pay their bill. As we learned during the debacle where the satellite provider drained the bank account of a dead customer’s friend, any debit or credit card that has ever been used for a given account stays on file…pretty much forever. Reader Laura learned this the hard way when the company drained her bank account to pay her sister’s bill.
A few months ago I paid a bill for my sister through my debit card to direct tv. On sunday night I get emails saying my account is overdrafted and they are taking money from my savings to cover it. So I go check my account and there is a $220 charge from direct tv at first I thought someone had used my card, but after researching I found out they will use any number on file.
I called them said the account was not in my name that I paid my sisters bill ONE time they never had my permission to use the account ever again, and they never informed me that they would ever need to! They said they have 10 days to act on my claim it is now day 5. My account is wiped out I have a $10 overdraft fee and no money for the rest of the week.
I called the bank today as instructed by a teller yesterday and the women I spoke to said that if I put in a claim that it would be denied since direct tv has a contract saying they have permission to use the card and to just keep calling them. I do call them and its always the same thing, they have 10 days. How is it even possible for them to keep my money I don’t have a contract with them. I was not notified of the fact they could take my money without my permission What else can I do? I don’t have money for bills or food, luckily I did not put my rent money in the bank.
Unfortunately, they did have your permission: it was probably buried somewhere in the terms and conditions when adding a new debit card to the account.