So I had a Discover Card. They charged me for charges I didn’t authorize. They then force me through their maze of policies telling me that it was not possible to be more customer friendly – their policies couldn’t be any different they were the policy (as if that made any sense). So Discover Card had to shut down my account. I told them if they couldn’t provide better service then I didn’t want a new account after they closed my account which was the only way they wouldn’t charge me for charges I didn’t authorize. They owed me $240 from their cashback bonus program. Now they refuse to pay me the money I earned because they say that it is their policy not to pay the cashback bonus if an account is closed.
After going around on that for awhile and them assuring me it was their policy and it was not possible for it to be done any other way by them or anyone else I asked what happened if someone died. Oh then the account is closed and we pay the money we owe on the cashback bonus. So obviously it isn’t that the account being closed makes it impossible for Discover to pay what was owed. It seems pretty obvious it is just a good way to take money Discover owes and just count on people not wanting to waste their time fighting to get what Discover owed them. Maybe one of their marketing people told them doing this to people that just had a parent/spouse… die might be bad publicity so they decided to actual pay what was owed in those instances. Jeez why can’t credit card companies just provide good service and treat customers well instead of only doing the absolute least they can that won’t spark outrage from the public and legislative action to prohibit such practices (I image not paying what was owed to people that died would spark legislative action if it wasn’t already illegal).
Is it really legal to charge someone for charges they didn’t authorize and when they tell you they didn’t authorize them refuse to do anything about it if they don’t close their account and then say we are not going to pay your cashback bonus because your account is closed? it seems to be yet another instance of credit card companies doing everything they can to take money from customers. Of course they claimed it was impossible to do anything else it was their policy to do it this way and no other credit card company is any different.
Well (I imagine as they hoped) I am just writing off getting the money they owe me back. But I would like to have some legal authority investigate if this is another instance of a credit card company acting either outside the legal limits or inside the legal limits but something that should be addressed so it is no longer legal. Any suggestions for what regulatory oversight body and/or legislators to send this to that actually cares about doing something about bad behavior by credit card companies against customers.
I really should have know better. I should have treated the earned bonus as something Discover would try to get out of paying and made sure I did whatever was needed to get them to pay. Relying on them to do the right thing when as they explained when I talked to them their policy and member agreement clearly stated the cashback earnings were subject to being forfeited. My failure to treat all the legalize they sent as the guiding principle instead of thinking they would do the right thing (not arming myself for battle with a corporation that would do what was right for them absent some clear legal requirement they honor their promise) was foolish on my part. I should know better than that.
The best argument Discover made is that noone else will provide any better customer service. I am worried that is true. For a couple years, a decade ago, Universal Card actually focused on customer service but I am not aware of any credit card company that does so now. Does anyone else know of a credit card company that does believe in customer service (not one that says they do just like the airlines… say they do) or some belief that saying “that is our policy” is good customer service?
Related: Customer Service is Important – Seven Steps to Remarkable Customer Service – Ritz Carlton and Home Depot – But while Americans love the convenience of plastic, they often hate the credit card issuer – Amit’s Thoughts: Cancel your Discover Card