I received a check for payment for services (farm work) from a Harris customer in the amount of approximately $1,000. I stopped by the Brazil, IN branch of Harris NA thinking that I could just cash it and I would deposit the remainder with my own bank (Riddell National) later, after I'd finished my Christmas shopping and held out some ready cash.
The Harris NA teller first told me that I must pay a $5 fee for cashing the check, because I wasn't a customer. We wangled about that momentarily, and I gave in, which was wrong of me;if I'd been a non-customer bringing a check from a non-customer in for cash, they could charge, but to charge for cashing a check drawn on a customer is wrong.
Then the teller got her phone book out and started calling people. I didn't understand at first, but she was calling the payee, and then his brother (another Harris customer). When neither was available, she declined to cash the check, saying that unless she could get approval from the customer, she could not cash it. I had my photo I.D. (driver's license) ready, but she never requested it.
I have to wonder if they call for approval when a check from this customer written to the phone company or the light company comes in. He is a reputable businessman in the community, and I would think that they would give him a little credit for not tossing signed checks about like candy at a parade. Likewise, though I am not a Harris NA customer, I have lived here all my life, which extends to some 46 years. I left with my check, which they wanted to keep - if I hadn't taken it with me, I wonder if I'd ever have been able to redeem it
I fully intend to pursue this with the Better Business Bureau, the Federal Depository Insurance Company, and whatever other entities I can find who are interested. I know that it is a pipe dream, but I would love to see the Brazil, IN branch of Harris Bank NA closed down and its operators jailed for theft and conversion.