Went yesterday to open a new checking account, moving next week and my current bank won't be close enough for convience. They started the open account process and then informed me they couldn't open an account because of negative reports on Chex systems. But I came prepared, and handed them a 2 inch thick folder with reports, letters, and receipts from Chex systems. Why did I have that folder on hand??? Because I've been having problems with Chex systems for a long time.
Problem is this. I had a roommate steal my identity a few years ago. Towards the end of our friendship, he was in major financial difficulties. Enough that I was thinking of evicting him since he had no job, sat around all day playing my video games instead of looking for work, and had not paid his portion of the rent and utilities in months. I went on vacation with some of my family members and I put my decision off until I returned. When I returned, he handed me a significant amount of money. It wasn't all of what he owed, but it satisfied me that he was paying his way again and I didn't evict him. Since he had picked up a job again, I had no problem believing that his dad loaned him the money. A few months later (6 or 7 months), I pulled my credit report. I was shocked at what I saw. My credit may not of been the best, but this was abysmal. I had 4 new banks listed on my credit that were delinquent (major league.) I contacted each bank only to be told that I had opened accounts in each one and funds were deposited and almost immediately withdrawn. To shorten the explanation, he opened the accounts up online, contacted online payday loan organizations, took out a loan, withdrew the funds, and closed the accounts. In order to do it, he had the mail sent to his girlfriends house. It took me almost 3 years and a lot of fighting to get it fixed. My buddy ended up going to jail. Besides my identity, he also did the same thing to 3 others including 2 family members.
It took me a few years to clear my name and get everything pretty much fixed. My credit report now looks a little better then it did before my identity was stolen, but I still do get an occasional snag that requires me to pull the folder out. But the one constant thorn in my side is Chexsystem. I still can't write checks if I wanted to (thank god I use debit cards 99% of the time, and have done so for years) or open a new account without hassle. Every time I want to do it, I have to call Chex up and remind them that "it is fixed" and to get re-verified. I have to do this with any financial institution I do business with. If it was to verify that it was me, I would understand. Losing my identity once made me paranoid enough to appreciate them looking out for me. But the fact that the debts were proven not to be mine, and I have a lot of correspondence from Chex that acknowledges it, and still the reports remain in the Chex system. And no matter how many times they say that they are removed, the reports always pop back up.
Needless to say, my account got opened and I got 2 years of identity protection added to my bank account for free due to my identiy being stolen before (and probably since I looked irritated about having to go through things again.) The bank branch manager had me in his office while he browsed through my supporting documents; and when he was done, he approved my account (and gave me the protection.) We talked after and he let on that errors like this were common with Chexsystem and most people just needed to make a call after the first rejection and have the process resubmitted a few minutes later and get approved. I was one of the worst cases he had seen, by far, but having my folder there with all the reports gave him better info then Chex.
So far I've been dealing with this problem for a little over 3 years, and with Chex being the worst/hardest to get fixed. No matter how many people I talk to, how many documents I have submitted/re-submitted, and how many times I've been told that the info has been deleted off of my record; it always returns. And I guess since Chex doesn't seem to care if their information is right, I'll be carrying around my folder for a few more years if I want to do anything financial that uses the Chex system.