August 4th 2008
I choose, as a citizen, not to participate in the banking industry. As I've hit my mid-40s and really analyzed the pros and cons of leaving a bank to tend to my money, it's become clear that it's more of a disadvantage for me to keep my savings in a bank. The systems in place within our society make it nearly impossible to live unless you have a bank account or a credit card, and I feel unfairly railroaded into participating by forces that stand to benefit from my earnings without providing anything in return. In fact, the ever more ruthless fees would chip away at my money rather than add interest if I was of more modest means. My payroll check is drawn on the Bank of America. A new policy (as of 9/16) now dictates that I will be charged $6.00 for cashing each of these checks at a Bank of America branch if I do not have an account there. Is a bank not required by law to honor a check issued from its own accounts assuming ID is in order? Banks have gotten into dubious territory in the last 10 years or so since identifying fees and penalties as a profit center, feeding on the customers who can least afford it. This is the broader issue. My gripe is that a bank won't cash it's own checks without exacting a fee from me or coercing me to open an account. What's the law? Thanks Stan. I've been a resident on and off since '76. Amherst High School. UMass. You've always been a rare example of the good in government.
Sincerely, Jim Neill
Stan Rosenberg responds:
August 4th, 2008
Thanks for your email and kind words.
Because of their practices, I have all but drained my Bank of America account and now bank locally. I only keep it open because of travel and ATM. I do 95% of my banking with local banks. The community savings banks are so much better and fairer. I hope if you haven't yet done so that you will look into some of them. You might find that you will get what you need without all of the of the nonsense of the huge banks that could care less whether or not you are well served as long as they get to use your money!