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Help w/Direct Merchants Bank

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What is the name of your state? Oregon

We had an auot-debit set up for our DM bank credit card as we were travelng overseas. They sent us the forms, we filled them out and sent them in, and for over a year they simply debited our checking account for the monthly payment. When we got back in the country a year later, we called to ask them to stop the auto-debit (5/26/02) as we were moving and would be closing our checking account. We advised DM that we would be paying by check until further notice. We were told that because our next payment was scheduled for 6/8/02, that the auto-pay might not cance l in time, so we should not close the account until after that payment had cleared. We waited until the payment cleared (6/8/02), and closed the account. Our next payment was due on 7/8/02, and we sent payment by money order to DM on 7/2/02. They received the payment on 7/8/02, and psted it to our account. On 7/15/02, I went to make a small ($21) purchase with our card, and it was declined. I call DM customer service, and the computer-generated system said that our account was current, and that there was approx. $500 of credit available. I asked to speak to a CS rep., who after some checking, told us that our account had been suspended because a payment had been returned. Seems that they had failed to cancel our auto-debit, and submitted a request to our old bank for payment, even though we told them not, and they had already received and posted our cash payment. I asked to speak to a manager, who came on the line and was very apologetic, and said that he would request that the suspension be lifted as payment had been received, andit was their fault for trying to get payment from our old bank. He told me that our account would be restored within 72 hours. I asked him to send me a copy of the auto-debit agreement I had signed as I was pretty peeved that they simply suspened my account even thouigh they had received payment. I called four days later to check the account, and it was still listed as suspended. I called immediately and asked to speak with another supervisor, she also put in another request to have the suspension lifted, and suggested I file a dispute in writing with their dispute (which I did--via certified mail). Several weeks have gone by and I have received nothing from DM (except a letter stating that a payment had been returnd and to contact the delinquent account dept....I did call them, got the automated system, which told me that my account was current....)and still my account is listed as "suspended."

I called again today, and asked to speak with someone in their legal dept. as I was getting sick and tired of this and would pursue legal action against them if they didn't fix their mess. I asked them if there was a federal or state agency with which I could file a complaint agains them, they said no. (I was speaking to a manager...) I asked for a physical address for their legal dept. so I could have them served with papers if needed...they refused to give me one other than a series of PO boxes...I asked to speak with ANYONE who could take care of this problem, and was told that all they could do was submit another request--there was no way for a customer to speak directly with the legal dept. and/or the dept that suspends accounts. In other words, they are stonewalling and hiding behind automated systems, po boxes, and cust service reps that can't do a thing.....

So, what rights do I have? How can I file a complaint against them, and are there federal or state agencies that can pursue this for me???

Thanks very much for your help!!!



Senior Member
There's always your states Attorney General's office. I'd call them and explain the problem. If nothing else, they could direct you to the right people for your complaint. There may also be some recourse with the FTC, though I'm not sure which law covers this situation, there are so many.

When they tell you there's no one you can complain to, they're full of it, they don't want you to complain or sue them. Have you tried Planetfeedback ? It seems many people get prompt responses when using it. www.planetfeedback.com

You might try posting your question as to contacts over at www.creditnet.com. There are lots of people there who may have some information. You have to register, but its free.

Good Luck.

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