Report: #782410

Complaint Review: BBVA Compass Bank

  • Submitted: Wed, September 28, 2011
  • Updated: Fri, September 30, 2011
  • Reported By: Brian — Yellville Arkansas United States of America
  • BBVA Compass Bank
    700 Calder Ave
    Beaumont, Texas
    United States of America
  • Phone: 4099816000
  • Web:
  • Category: Banks

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Compass Bank steals accounts if they think you are not paying attention.  Of course it is all legal, since they lobbied (bribed) legislators to make it legal.  If you are unfortunate enough to have an account with them, I suggest you close it immediately.  I have heard that they also steal the contents of safe-deposit boxes if you do not access them for 12 months.  Anybody who leaves their valuables with these people is in danger of being robbed.

I was employed on a ship that frequently docked in downtown Beaumont.  I opened an account at the closest branch when it was still Guarantee Bank, which failed.  Texas State Bank took over and also failed, and my account was transferred to the new owners, Compass.  During all this turmoil, I was involved in the Persian Gulf War.  Little did I know it would last forever.  I kept the account with over a $2000 balance for convenience, in case we came back to Beaumont.  Lately I noticed that I had not received a statement for months so I called. 

The main Customer Service office said that my account had been 'deactivated' and advised me to go to the branch where I opened the account to deal with it.  Of course this is impossible.  So they transferred me to the local branch customer service line.  I was kept on hold for 30 minutes, at which time a recording came on that informed me that the bank was closed.  By my calculations it was 11:00 AM on a Monday and not a holiday.  In case you don't know, satellite telephone calls are extremely expensive.

I sent email to Customer Service.  Eventually they responded, telling me to contact the local branch.  The circle was complete, and I was expected to start the run-around again at $10 per minute.  Now I suppose I will have to hire an attorney to get my money back.  That probably won't cost much more than $2000, will it?
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#1 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Laurie - (U.S.A.)

WWW.OTS.GOV File a complaint with them -

I have used the Office of Thrift supervision when WAMU and GEMB tried to scam me on my credit card accounts.  Both refused to deal with and FIX THEIR ERRORS!  As soon as they received the complaint from OTS -the matters were resolved within a few weeks.

Their errors -
removal of mailing address without consent and refusal to accept payment from me, claimed my account never existed. (WAMU)

Removal of mailing address + posted fraudulent charges to rarely used dept store account at the same time they removed the mailing address from account records  (GEMB)  
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#2 Author of original report

Isn't that Sweet

AUTHOR: Brian - (United States of America)

    They're very helpful, but there's a catch:  You are unlikely to get to talk to a live person at 1-800-COMPASS.  You can listen to some very boring music while you're on hold though.  An interesting thing I learned today is that their automatic teller system still advises me that I have a balance of exactly what I thought it should be, and mentions nothing about the account being frozen, dormant, inactive or whatever they are calling it today.  I even got a witness to call and back me up on that.  Just in case the information changes before tomorrow. 
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#3 UPDATE Employee

BBVA Compass Social Media Team

AUTHOR: BBVA Compass - (USA)


My name is Carolina Aramayo; I am a member of the social media team
here at BBVA Compass Bank.

We would very much like to discuss this experience with you. Please contact us at your earliest convenience, our email address is To verify authenticity, please call 1-800-COMPASS; Ask the customer agent to look up my contact information in our corporate directory, ePhoneBook, and transfer you to me. Please do not disclose any private information that may violate the security of your account.

BBVA Compass strives to provide the most courteous and responsive

Thank you.
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#4 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: mr rik - (USA)

Now I see why they have 263 reports today.

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#5 Author of original report

Your naivete will have a natural and logical consequence.

AUTHOR: Brian - (United States of America)

A look at the fine print of the contract signed when a safety deposit box is opened reveals that in essence the signer has given to the bank whatever property he has put into that deposit box. When times are good people will be allowed open access to their safe deposit box and the property that is in it. This also applies to their bank accounts.

But when times get really bad, many may find that the funds they have placed on deposit and the property they thought was secured in the safe deposit box now belong to the bank, not to them. Although this was probably not explained to them when they signed their signature card, this is what they were agreeing to.

Additionally, Compass Bank and Bank of America employees have reported that Homeland Security has issued orders to banks across America which announce to them that "under the Patriot Act" the DHS has the absolute right to seize, without any warrant whatsoever, any and all customer bank accounts, to make "periodic and unannounced" visits to any bank to open and inspect the contents of "selected safe deposit boxes," and to seize them at the discretion of the Agent.

DHS memos also state that banks are informed that any bank employee, on any level, that releases "improper" "classified DHS Security information" to any member of the public, to include the customers whose boxes have been clandestinely opened and inspected and "any other party, to include members of the media" and further "that the posting of any such information on the internet will be grounds for the immediate termination of the said employee or employees and their prosecution under the Patriot Act."

My bank account probably does exist somewhere.  It will remain dormant until it can be legally seized, because Compass Bank refuses to reactivate it unless I make a long and expensive trip back to Beaumont.  Even then I doubt that anything would be done.  Eventually it will be turned over to the State, but you can bet that Compass is getting their cut in one way or another.  The State may return the money, but they will not be in a hurry about it.  My mother's IRA was seized this way, and it took her 2 years to get the money back.  In the meantime she had to make do with Social Security.

Anyone who thinks they can trust Compass Bank with their valuables is going to be very unhappy when they find out that a great deal of the Bank's effort goes into thinking up ways to cheat them out of their money.
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#6 Author of original report

You better read your account agreements.

AUTHOR: Brian - (United States of America)

The process of the bank and the State splitting up the money they steal from inactive accounts is called "escheatment," and it is, in fact, legal.  My mother's IRA was grabbed this way, but fortunately she noticed, and it took her two more years to get her money back from the state.  It used to take 5 years to declare an account abandoned.  Some states have now lowered this to one year.  Here is a direct quote from Compass's Account Agreement:

     "Dormant accounts may be subject to a service charge based on the dormant status. Charges are not reimbursed for inactive accounts that are later reclassified as active. If funds are remitted to the state, you may file a claim with the state to recover the funds. For security reasons, we may refuse a withdrawal or transfer from accounts we internally classify as dormant if we cannot reach you in a timely fashion to confirm the transactions authorization. In the case of interest-bearing accounts that become dormant, we also may reduce the rate of interest or cease paying interest as disclosed on the applicable schedule of service charges and in accordance with applicable state law. We may be required to transfer the balance in any account that remains dormant, or that is otherwise considered abandoned or unclaimed for the period of time described by applicable state law to the applicable state agency as abandoned or unclaimed property."

This would seem to indicate that all you have to do to get your money back is ask for it.  That is a lie.  They are going to do everything they can to keep your money, and the Attorney General of Texas is not going to help you because the State profits as well.  At Compass Bank, they do not notify you of their intent to deactivate and freeze your accounts even though they have your address, telephone number, and e-mail, and if you do figure it out they make it impossible for you to talk to anyone who can do anything about it.  Obviously they consider it profitable to do this. 
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#7 Consumer Comment

Bogus review

AUTHOR: coast - (USA)

"I have heard that they also steal the contents of safe-deposit boxes if you do not access them for 12 months."

You heard incorrectly.

"Compass Bank steals accounts if they think you are not paying attention."
"I kept the account with over a $2000 balance"

Nope. Don't believe that happened. Your account may have been deactivated but the money is still there or they have given you a justified reason why it isn't.
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#8 REBUTTAL Individual responds

No offense but..

AUTHOR: Termaime - (United States of America)

Banks dont steal money dude thats real illegal i think you a liar
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