PayPal Blocked Access To My Account After Denying Me A Debit Card

Consumerist reader “A.M.” has a small business running a Minecraft server that brings in a bit of money via PayPal. He recently applied for a PayPal/Mastercard debit card, only to be denied. That wasn’t such a big deal; the real problem was his sudden inability to access the money in his PayPal account.

“I have tried the normal support number… which took them about an half hour to even answer,” A.M. wrote to Consumerist. “The person simply redirected me to another department, and after an hour of waiting, we simply gave up. About an half hour later, I decided to attempt to call the executive customer service numbers. Either they weren’t in operation, or nobody answered.”

We reached out to someone at PayPal who promised to give A.M.’s situation a looking over. It didn’t take long for the company to contact him and say the problem would be resolved the next day.

But when the next day came, rather than an e-mail or phone call telling him that things were fixed and he could access his account, A.M. received a poorly written message from PayPal customer service saying, “We understand you no longer want the PayPal Debit Mastercard, unfortunately at this time, we are unable to lift the limitation and still require verification of identity.”

Huh?

The e-mail then goes on to tell him the various forms of ID that are needed and how he can send them by e-mail or snail mail.

So A.M. tried contacting PayPal by phone, asking to speak with the person who had told him only a day earlier that the issue would be resolved by now.

“The CSR said, ‘There is no way to find this person again,'” he tells Consumerist.

So rather than continuing to bang his head against the PayPal wall, A.M. photocopied his ID and faxed it over.

Which would have been great. Except the PayPal fax number wasn’t working.

And so he had to contact PayPal again and get a working fax number for a supervisor.

The next day, he finally got the good news:
“Our review is complete and we have restored your account,” PayPal wrote in its e-mail to A.M. “We appreciate your patience and thank you for your help in making PayPal the safest and most trusted online payment solution.”

By “most trusted,” PayPal of course means “basically the only thing many sellers can use on eBay.”

Regardless, A.M.’s account is back in good standing, though there has yet to be any proper explanation of why he was denied a debit card and why that denial shut down his account. Our PayPal contacts can not discuss specific customer issues, so though we were able to help resolve A.M.’s problem, we’re still in the dark as to what actually happened to start this mess.

For his part, A.M. says he is moving a large chunk of his money to a non-PayPal institution.