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Bigger Hammer Theory

So a few months ago Steph was purchasing something from Amazon when she noticed she could get 10% off if she applied for an Amazon credit card (which also gives her Amazon points when she uses it). She used the card (actually a Chase card) a few times, always paying it off at the end of the month. She sent in her last payment (due July 4th) as usual, and thought everything was normal.

Fast forward to Friday, July 20th. We receive a new statement in the mail... with a $39 late fee assessed. It seems the payment wasn't entered until July 6th. Steph was a little upset, so she called Chase to try and get the fee removed -- but they wouldn't budge. They refused to waive the fee even after she told them to close the account. Needless to say, we were not at all happy with Chase at that point.

Then I started thinking... we have a Chase mortgage, a Chase auto loan, and three Chase credit card accounts -- one of which has been open for 4+ years and seen thousands of dollars worth of use. If they weren't going to waive this $39 late fee, I would simply close all the accounts (well, except maybe the mortgage, of course).

I found a statement for the oldest Chase credit card, and gave them a call. Upon reaching an 'account specialist', I informed her I wanted my account closed. The answer was, "You've had this account for 4 years, why are you closing the account." I told her about Steph's experience just moments before, and informed her that I would be closing all my Chase accounts. She immediately asked for Steph's account number, and then asked to speak to her. Steph agreed to keep the Amazon account open if they would waive the fee, and thus I agreed to keep the 4 y.o. account open. Problem solved.

So moral of the story, if at first you don't get what you want, try a bigger hammer. :-)


Way to go Jeffie!

Good for you! Just last month our credit card company tried to charge us a $39 late fee for paying... a few minutes past midnight EST. We live in CA, so naturally assumed our payment schedules were based on PST. Not so. The idiots reversed this moronic fee once we threatened to closer the account. Not a bigger hammer, but our "infraction" was much smaller.

My borther had a similar problem a few years back with TD-Canada Trust. My parents had deposited cash into his bank account at the teller (which was also at the same branch as theirs). He's had that account for 15 years. They wouldn't let him withdraw the money until it was "verified".

It took a phone call to TD with various account numbers with significant balances to "convince" then to not mess around again.