• Report: #1044828

Complaint Review: Citizens Bank

  • Submitted: Sat, April 20, 2013
  • Updated: Sun, April 21, 2013

  • Reported By: Sara — W.Dennis Massachusetts
Citizens Bank
Rte.134 Patriot Square Plaza South Dennis, MA W.Yarmouth, Massachusetts United States of America
  • Phone: 18009229999
  • Web:
  • Category: Banks

Citizens Bank Free green checking isn't free W.Yarmouth , Massachusetts

*Consumer Comment: You failed to reconcile

*Consumer Comment: comment

*General Comment: Some possibilities to consider...

*Author of original report: No total account balance on statements

*Consumer Comment: You were not 'meticulous'

*Author of original report: NO

*Consumer Suggestion: I don't think so...

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My husband and I have been banking with Citizen's since 2008, and when we originally got our account, it was called the "green free checking account." We started noticing last year that money was unaccounted for and he and I both are very meticulous in entering all of our deposits and accounting for all of our checks. We even avoided getting an atm card as to simplify what was being put in and taken out.
A few months ago, we noticed our balances kept being off from what our checkbook register said, so we decided to get printouts from them all of the transactions made going back at least six months. (We were short over $400.00) so we could compare their figures with ours to see if maybe we had forgotten something or where the mistakes were being made.
After careful speculation, we noticed each time one of my pay checks was deposited they shorted us $40.00 here, $20.00 there, $70.00, etc. Granted, whenever we were short on cash we would usually take up to
$60.00 tops at a time, but it was put in the register, or deducted from the amount of the deposit prior to the transaction.
We highlighted each time this was done and compared it with our figures asking where our money was. Of course since they never gave us printouts or receipts, and if they did they had a bunch of xxxx printed out and only the amount deposited, almost never the total available balance unless we requested it. So basically they told us since we don't have any of the receipts, there is nothing they can do! We closed our account immediately. Don't bank with these people, they're just as shady as every other bank that screws customers out of their hard earned money!

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 04/20/2013 10:40 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Citizens-Bank/WYarmouth-Massachusetts-/Citizens-Bank-Free-green-checking-isnt-free-WYarmouth-Massachusetts-1044828. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

You failed to reconcile

AUTHOR: coast - ()

"I clearly stated the satements didn't have a balance"

You did not. You wrote that the receipts did not indicate the balance.

You appear to be confused as to the difference between a receipt and a statement. You receive a deposit receipt at the time of each deposit. Typically that receipt will not include your current balance unless you request that info at the time of deposit. You receive a monthly statement that always includes your balance as of the statement date. The reverse side of the monthly statement includes directions on how to reconcile your account. There is no question that you failed to reconcile the account for an extended period of time.
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#2 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Jeanski - ()

"We started noticing last year that money was unaccounted for and he and I both are very meticulous in entering all of our deposits and accounting for all of our checks"

Ummm.... maybe not so much. If you were that meticulous, why did it take you a year to try and reconcile this with the bank? As others have already posted, you probably got cash back from a deposit and didn't record it. The first time this happened you would have noticed it when you balanced your checkbook and things wouldn't have escalated this far.
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#3 General Comment

Some possibilities to consider...

AUTHOR: Striderq - ()

I would suggest if not already enrolled in their online banking program to enroll. You should be able to then look at an image of each deposit (in the last 18 months) and see what was written and see if it matched your records and the statements. Also review the image of the checks that you have spent to make sure they were encoded correctly. When you give say a grocery store a check, they send it to their bank which puts a MICR line on the bottom. Gives information such as check number, check amount & a couple of others. The check is then sent to your bank which processes it mechanically. Their systems read the MICR line and deduct that amount of money from your account and send it to the requesting bank. If you write the check for $20.00 but it's encoded at $40.00, your bank is going to send $40 to the other bank. The only way a human looks at this is if you call and tell them it paid for the wrong amount. The same thing is possible when a deposit slip is processed.

One thing that puzzles me from your posts, is that you state your checkbook register agree with the printout you received from the bank. But you then say that this amount is not what's shown on your statements. Can you possibly clear this up if I'm misunderstanding what you wrote.

Another possibility is Citizens website no longer shows a "Green Free" account, just a "Green" account". It's possible that they "grandfathered" you when they did away with the Free account. Meaning that they'll let you keep it but no one can open one now. With the Green account there's a $9.99 monthly service fee which does have some ways to have the fee waived. Was are: 5 Qualifying payment transactions include ATM withdrawals, direct automatic payments you authorize to be taken from your account by a third party, payments using our Online Banking Bill Payment service, Debit Card purchases, and paid checks OR an average daily balance of at least $1500. Since you don't have a Debit/ATM card, you would need to use the online billpay, direct debits or at least 5 checks per month. It is possible that the bank changed your account from the Green Free to the Green. They would have included notification in your statement that the change would be effective on such a date and any use of your account after that date would mean you agreed to the change.

Hope this helps you figure out what's happening.
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#4 Author of original report

No total account balance on statements

AUTHOR: Sara - ()

If you read the above report, I clearly stated the satements didn't have a balance. They say time, date and amount. Never total account balance.
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#5 Consumer Comment

You were not 'meticulous'

AUTHOR: coast - ()

This is your fault due to your failure to reconcile your account monthly.

"they never gave us printouts or receipts, and if they did..."

That is a contradictory statement. Either they did or they didn't give you receipts.
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#6 Author of original report


AUTHOR: Sara - ()

Excuse me, but both of us have a pretty good understanding that aside from the $2.00 statement fee, and never had to deal with overdraft fee, we thoroughly read through and understood "free checking" just fine. There was no discrepancies on OUR part, and the print outs we got were statements FROM the bank. When my checks were deposited, it shows the correct amount in our checkbook which matches the printout. Only they didn't deposit the full amount MANY times. Of course, it's never the banks fault! That's why every site you go to they are FILLED with consumer complaints, also in mortgage lending, and whatever special extortionist packages banks offer these days.
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#7 Consumer Suggestion

I don't think so...

AUTHOR: Batman - ()

For people who claim to be meticulous, you have no idea how to track your bank account.

First, money deposited at the bank doesn't disappear without a trace. There's ALWAYS a reason and ALWAYS a record.

I'm not saying banks don't charge stupid and ridiculous fees. What I'm saying that when they do, you can see it clearly labeled on your monthly statements, the online register, when you review your transactions by phone, in their TOS, etc. 

Second, I don't understand why you would try to reconcile your account using receipts... it doesn't make any sense to try to do it this way, especially considering the "missing" money likely went to bank fees or were withdrawals or purchases made that you failed to record.

No matter how careful you think you are, you might have forgotten to record one of your little emergency cash-back dips you sometimes do with your deposits. Also, when it comes to clean and easy record keeping, always avoid taking cash back when depositing a check... just make separate transactions so your deposit amount always matches your checks.

You should just go back and use your monthly statements to reconcile your account or get a copy of your transaction history for the last few months. You'd probably see where you screwed up right away... 

Whatever happened, I can guarantee this... the bank didn't steal your money or rip you off, at least not in the sense you're implying with this report.

The "missing" funds were either never deposited because you took cash back and failed to record doing so, were later spent by you and thought lost because you failed to record the purchase, or the money went to the bank as service fees of some sort. If they were bank fees, then they were A. clearly marked on your statements and history and B. detailed in the bank's TOS agreement. 

Do you know the one thing every last person who feels ripped off by their bank has in common? They didn't understand how the account worked when they opened it and never bothered to learn afterward.

To avoid further incidents, I'd suggest you keep cash under your mattress until you learn how to properly handle your finances. 
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