I've had my Greendot Mastercard for a while and its worked pretty well. But the other day, I had a problem that seems similar to others I've seen posted. I went to make a small ($30) purchase at Office Depot. I had plenty of money on the card. I slid my card, entered my pin and . . . declined. I knew there was money so I tried again . . . declined. Office Depot then automatically voided the transaction, and I went home empty handed. I went online, checked my transactions, and saw that Office Depot had not one, but two transactions listed as pending, both in the exact same amount, dated that very day. So I called customer service. The Greendot rep told me that Greendot had okayed the transaction, but their records showed that Office Depot had declined the transactions "at their end." She apologized for the inconvenience, and told me that the money being held for "both" transactions ($60) would become available again within 5 days.
Today I checked my transactions and saw that the Office Depot transactions, both of them, which had been previously declined by Office Depot, have now posted and been paid. So I call customer service. Now the rep, a different one, says, "Yeah, Office Depot declined the transactions, but they kept the money. You'll have to get a credit from Office Depot.
"Is there anything else I can help you with today?"
Yeah, stop giving my money away.
I go to Office Depot, the store manger was very helpful, pulled the cashier journal from my attempted purchase, and showed me how the transaction was automatically voided. He claims they didn't get the money, so he couldn't return any. But hey, if there's anything else he can do . . . Come back if this doesn't get resolved and he'll call corporate. . . . You might want to try disputing the transaction. . .
So I drafted a letter to dispute the transactions, attached the printout from the cash register showing that the transaction was declined twice and had been immediately voided, and I've sent it certified mail. I'll update on any response I get.
In the meantime, be forewarned that your money may not be safe with Greendot. Greendot's records reflected the fact that the transaction had been declined by the merchant's bank twice, but still released funds to the merchant's bank for each (voided) transaction (deducting $30 two separate times). Oddly, the transactions were originally listed on my online statement as "pending" in consecutive order. But when updated to "posted", the listings were separated by several intervening entries. I initially missed the fact that both transactions had updated to "pending" because of this. To the Greendot customer rep's credit, he's the one that pointed out that both transactions had posted and neither credited back to my account.
So basically, it seems like Office Depot's bank said, "No, we don't want this money." And Greendot responded, "That's okay, we're gonna give it to you anyway. In fact, why don't we give you double." Maybe nobody at Greendot ever said anything like that, but in the end that's what they've done.
Of course, I'm concerned about filing this report. I'm worried that I may get a, "We ought to just freeze this account until it gets worked out." If that happens, I'll let you all know. And if any from Greendot reads this, nothing would make me happier than to come back and say that you took care of everything and apologized for the mix up. And I'll do that if you give me reason to.