Report: #1119946

Complaint Review: Higher One

  • Submitted: Fri, January 31, 2014
  • Updated: Fri, January 31, 2014
  • Reported By: BenderIsGreat — Texas
  • Higher One
    115 Munson St
    New Haven, Connecticut
  • Phone: (203) 776-7776
  • Web:
  • Category: Banks

Higher One Higher One is a scam, and you con't have to use their services, despite what you've been led to believe New Haven Connecticut

*UPDATE Employee: Thank you and clarifications

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Higher One is a banking service that is typically used as a form of college refund services. Students whose colleges use Higher One as a refund service are generally led to belive that the Higher One card is the only form of refund preference, although that isn't the case. It's not legal for a college to force students to become customers to a private banking entity, and if you dig hard enough, the Higher One site does offer the option to receive your refund to your personal bank account, but the information isn't exactly clearly displayed, and it's a bit difficult to request this preference.

I have heard that if you cut up the card upon receiving it you will receive your refund check in the mail, but I personally wouldn't attempt this as I can foresee all kinds of delays and BS on Higher One's or your school's behalf. When I spoke to a Higher One representative about receiving a check from my school, I was told that my school did not issue refund checks, so I'm not really certain what would have happened to my refund if I had cut up my Higher One card and never changed my refund preference with them, which still doens't sound legal, but a lot of illegal activities take place that go unreported or undetected because people don't know their rights, or don't have the funds to pursue legal action.

Higher One is a scam service that chargeds all sorts of penalties and fees to use their service. It's really not a good way to receive your refund, so I recommend you change your refund preference as soon as you receive the card in the mail, then cancel your account with them without using their services. Despite gaining millions by leeching fees from their student customers, Higher One is not interested in providing decent customer service to the people they glean their millions from. 

After a falling out with Higher One regarding an incident with my account that left me in the negative, thanks to Higher One reaching into my account as they pleased, and exceptionally rude and poor customer service, I changed my refund preference to my personal bank account and closed my Higher One account.

Higher One has done nothing to address my issue except accuse me of being in the wrong. I refuse to discuss anything further with Higher One until they drop their "my way or the highway" tactics, and I have submitted a formal complaint to the BBB about their deceitful and predatory business practices. I urge anyone else who has experienced underhanded dealings with Higher One to do the same.

My only regret in dealing with Higher One is that I did not change my refund preference and close the account as soon as I received the card. Shame on them and the schools who push this scam card onto their students.

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/31/2014 03:36 PM and is a permanent record located here: 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. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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Updates & Rebuttals


#1 UPDATE Employee

Thank you and clarifications

AUTHOR: Lauren, Higher One CRC - ()

Hello and thank you for expressing your candid feedback about your experience with Higher One. We're always taking the student experience into account and trying to improve our service to students so we're truly grateful for feedback like yours.

We want to make sure students are aware that they have choices when it comes to how they receive their financial aid refund money. When the Higher One card arrives in the mail, it is simply a tool for the student to choose their financial aid refund preference. They use it to log online and select how they want to receive their money: either a direct deposit into an OPTIONAL Higher One checking account, a direct deposit into a domestic bank account they already have or a paper check in the mail. If a student elects to open an optional Higher One checking account, the card then becomes a Debit MasterCard linked to that account.

If a student does nothing - that is, receives the card in the mail and does not go online to choose a refund preference of cuts up the card - per requirements set by the Department of Education, Higher One will issue a check to the address the student has on file with the school after a 21-day default period.

Please know the choice is yours with Higher One.

Thank you,
Higher One

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