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Report: #22982

Complaint Review: CROSS COUNTRY BANK - Woodinville Washington

  • Submitted:
  • Updated:
  • Reported By: Woodinville WA
  • CROSS COUNTRY BANK Wilmington Delaware Woodinville, Washington U.S.A.

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I saw an ad on TV one night for Cross Country Bank.

I got the number .first it sound idea to rebuild my credit, a low-limit credit card I could make regular payments on. So I gave them a call; they took my application and determined they would give me a credit limit of $300 and to expect the card in the mail.

Two weeks later I got the card in the mail called to activate it. But I did not charge on the card at first because I wanted to wait for the first billing statement. I thought I did the smart thing and not long after first billing statement arrived. It showed that I had an account with them and nothing else, no signup fees showing.

So I decided it was OK to start using the card. I made 2 charges on the card; one for $20 and another for $40, a total of $60 against a $300 limit. I charged no more until the bill arrived. Then I would pay the $60 on it no problem to pay it off right away.

To my surprise the billing statement showed $230 of "signup fees" for a card with a credit limit of $300, fees which were undisclosed and never mentioned in any of my contacts. The two charges were there, yes, as well
as the 80% signup fees. EIGHTY PERCENT. Not even loan sharks charge that much.

I picked up the phone and gave them a call. No 800 number; a long distance call from Washington to Florida. After a labyrinth of transfers and menus, all on my dime, I finally got someone on the line and explained the
situation. It was like talking to a wall; no matter what I said, the person on the other end had only one line "Sorry sir I can't help you with that. You have to write to the bank yourself "

I asked for the bank direct number and I got the same line again Then I went on the web looking for a mailing address. I wrote to them and asked them to removed $230 charges, charged never disclosed to me, or close
my account and would send it the $60 which I charged.

Weeks late I got a letter from them state the they won't take off the $230, and my account with them is closed so I can't use the card anymore. At this point I had the card less than two months. Then come the next billing
statement, now with a "late fee" charged. A "late fee" of $40! I made the payment, but the next bill showed another $40 "late fee" anyway.

I talked with them for months. Then they began calling me; from 20 to 50 calls per week, at all times of the day and night, 5 AM on Sunday mornings. The callers were abusive, threatening, blustering. I made some more payments but it didn't matter; another $40 was added every month regardless of how much I paid.

Finally they offered a deal; if I would send $140 with a check number over the phone on that day then they would close the account. I did this; I sent the money. But that wasn't the end; the next billing statement showed
me owing over $500. What the hell?

I called again and they denied ever making any deals, and continued to threaten, continued to call. To this
day they are calling me every day, all times of day. I have paid over $400 to them in all, and they show on my credit report as owing them over $700. Despite the account being closed they continue to add $40 every
month and continue to threaten, and to add insult to injury, they are still offering "deals" to finish thing off.

I will declare bankruptcy before I will give the racketeers at Cross Country Bank another penny. These people are liars and crooks and their collection agents are the rudest people I have ever run into on the
telephone. I doubt there is any "bank" here; I was getting calls from their "collections" people before I had even missed a payment.

This is a fictitious bank that issues credit cards for no other reason than to collect from people. They are not collecting any more from me.

DON'T GET A CREDIT CARD FROM CROSS COUNTRY BANK. Run screaming instead.

Edward
Woodinville, Washington

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 06/18/2002 06:06 PM and is a permanent record located here: https://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/cross-country-bank/woodinville-washington-98072/cross-country-bank-ripoff-business-from-hell-delaware-florida-22982. 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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#5 Consumer Suggestion

Unfortunate Consumer

AUTHOR: Josh - ()

POSTED: Sunday, June 30, 2002
First issue you mentioned is 80% interest ... well, that's not exactly accurate. You may have been billed $230, but it wasn't interest. If it were, it would be nearly 400% interest, considering your charges totalled only $60 (interest is a computation of balance, not limit). This amount is a fee (or fees), and although chokingly large, not illegal ... there are legal limits on how much interest can be charged on revolving credit (I believe Prime Rate plus X%, although I don't know what X is currently).

Second, a closed account means they will no longer allow you to charge on it, not that they don't expect you to pay it back or be subject to the repayment terms you agreed to. And I can't say I blame them for closing the account if they received no payment for the first two months the account was open, and it was already over the credit limit (I'm assuming $230 in fees, $60 in charges, probably around $5 in interest the first month, a late fee of $30, $6 in interest the second month, and now a late fee of $30 and overlimit fee of $30 = $391/$300 after two months, approximately)

If they are in fact calling you, as you say, 20 - 50 times a week, at all hours day and night, you may have some recourse. The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) protects the consumer from just this. I'd have to go back and check, but I believe in most states, legal call hours are 8am - 8pm 7 days a week. And maximum number of calls are one Right-Party Connect (meaning they talk to the account holder) per week. If they are violating the FDCPA, contact your state's Attorney General and see if you can get assistance.

Couple tips that might help out:

FDCPA only technically applies to third-party collection agencies, although most companies who use in-house collections voluntarily abide by these rules.

A right party connect (RPC) means they talk to the account holder...no answer, answering machine, kids answer, etc, means they can keep calling unlimited times until they get that RPC. If you aren't going to pay, can't pay, don't want to pay, or whatever, answer the phone. They will ask for you, "May I speak to John Smith?" ... answer, "This is John Smith". Now they jump into collection mode, "Mr. Smith, this is Joe Nobody from The Big Bad Bank, calling about your past due credit card" ... cut them off with "Ahh, ok, thank you" and hang-up. They just made a RPC, established their identity, and the call ended - viola, no more calls for 7 days. Granted, this has to be done weekly, but it works. If they call back, call them out "Are you aware you are in violation of the FDCPA?" and hang-up again. Use the acronym, I assure you every collector knows what FDCPA stands for ... and most know they are PERSONALLY liable for fines up to $5000 for violating it, and the company they represent is liable at a much higher rate.

Last tip, move to Pennsylvania. They can't garnish wages, sue you, put a lien on your property, they can only call once a MONTH per RPC, and they can't even call more than once a week if you don't answer. They can't call on Sunday, they can't call you at work if you submit a letter requesting such.
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#4 Consumer Suggestion

Unfortunate Consumer

AUTHOR: Josh - ()

POSTED: Sunday, June 30, 2002
First issue you mentioned is 80% interest ... well, that's not exactly accurate. You may have been billed $230, but it wasn't interest. If it were, it would be nearly 400% interest, considering your charges totalled only $60 (interest is a computation of balance, not limit). This amount is a fee (or fees), and although chokingly large, not illegal ... there are legal limits on how much interest can be charged on revolving credit (I believe Prime Rate plus X%, although I don't know what X is currently).

Second, a closed account means they will no longer allow you to charge on it, not that they don't expect you to pay it back or be subject to the repayment terms you agreed to. And I can't say I blame them for closing the account if they received no payment for the first two months the account was open, and it was already over the credit limit (I'm assuming $230 in fees, $60 in charges, probably around $5 in interest the first month, a late fee of $30, $6 in interest the second month, and now a late fee of $30 and overlimit fee of $30 = $391/$300 after two months, approximately)

If they are in fact calling you, as you say, 20 - 50 times a week, at all hours day and night, you may have some recourse. The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) protects the consumer from just this. I'd have to go back and check, but I believe in most states, legal call hours are 8am - 8pm 7 days a week. And maximum number of calls are one Right-Party Connect (meaning they talk to the account holder) per week. If they are violating the FDCPA, contact your state's Attorney General and see if you can get assistance.

Couple tips that might help out:

FDCPA only technically applies to third-party collection agencies, although most companies who use in-house collections voluntarily abide by these rules.

A right party connect (RPC) means they talk to the account holder...no answer, answering machine, kids answer, etc, means they can keep calling unlimited times until they get that RPC. If you aren't going to pay, can't pay, don't want to pay, or whatever, answer the phone. They will ask for you, "May I speak to John Smith?" ... answer, "This is John Smith". Now they jump into collection mode, "Mr. Smith, this is Joe Nobody from The Big Bad Bank, calling about your past due credit card" ... cut them off with "Ahh, ok, thank you" and hang-up. They just made a RPC, established their identity, and the call ended - viola, no more calls for 7 days. Granted, this has to be done weekly, but it works. If they call back, call them out "Are you aware you are in violation of the FDCPA?" and hang-up again. Use the acronym, I assure you every collector knows what FDCPA stands for ... and most know they are PERSONALLY liable for fines up to $5000 for violating it, and the company they represent is liable at a much higher rate.

Last tip, move to Pennsylvania. They can't garnish wages, sue you, put a lien on your property, they can only call once a MONTH per RPC, and they can't even call more than once a week if you don't answer. They can't call on Sunday, they can't call you at work if you submit a letter requesting such.
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#3 Consumer Suggestion

Unfortunate Consumer

AUTHOR: Josh - ()

POSTED: Sunday, June 30, 2002
First issue you mentioned is 80% interest ... well, that's not exactly accurate. You may have been billed $230, but it wasn't interest. If it were, it would be nearly 400% interest, considering your charges totalled only $60 (interest is a computation of balance, not limit). This amount is a fee (or fees), and although chokingly large, not illegal ... there are legal limits on how much interest can be charged on revolving credit (I believe Prime Rate plus X%, although I don't know what X is currently).

Second, a closed account means they will no longer allow you to charge on it, not that they don't expect you to pay it back or be subject to the repayment terms you agreed to. And I can't say I blame them for closing the account if they received no payment for the first two months the account was open, and it was already over the credit limit (I'm assuming $230 in fees, $60 in charges, probably around $5 in interest the first month, a late fee of $30, $6 in interest the second month, and now a late fee of $30 and overlimit fee of $30 = $391/$300 after two months, approximately)

If they are in fact calling you, as you say, 20 - 50 times a week, at all hours day and night, you may have some recourse. The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) protects the consumer from just this. I'd have to go back and check, but I believe in most states, legal call hours are 8am - 8pm 7 days a week. And maximum number of calls are one Right-Party Connect (meaning they talk to the account holder) per week. If they are violating the FDCPA, contact your state's Attorney General and see if you can get assistance.

Couple tips that might help out:

FDCPA only technically applies to third-party collection agencies, although most companies who use in-house collections voluntarily abide by these rules.

A right party connect (RPC) means they talk to the account holder...no answer, answering machine, kids answer, etc, means they can keep calling unlimited times until they get that RPC. If you aren't going to pay, can't pay, don't want to pay, or whatever, answer the phone. They will ask for you, "May I speak to John Smith?" ... answer, "This is John Smith". Now they jump into collection mode, "Mr. Smith, this is Joe Nobody from The Big Bad Bank, calling about your past due credit card" ... cut them off with "Ahh, ok, thank you" and hang-up. They just made a RPC, established their identity, and the call ended - viola, no more calls for 7 days. Granted, this has to be done weekly, but it works. If they call back, call them out "Are you aware you are in violation of the FDCPA?" and hang-up again. Use the acronym, I assure you every collector knows what FDCPA stands for ... and most know they are PERSONALLY liable for fines up to $5000 for violating it, and the company they represent is liable at a much higher rate.

Last tip, move to Pennsylvania. They can't garnish wages, sue you, put a lien on your property, they can only call once a MONTH per RPC, and they can't even call more than once a week if you don't answer. They can't call on Sunday, they can't call you at work if you submit a letter requesting such.
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#2 Consumer Suggestion

Unfortunate Consumer

AUTHOR: Josh - ()

POSTED: Sunday, June 30, 2002
First issue you mentioned is 80% interest ... well, that's not exactly accurate. You may have been billed $230, but it wasn't interest. If it were, it would be nearly 400% interest, considering your charges totalled only $60 (interest is a computation of balance, not limit). This amount is a fee (or fees), and although chokingly large, not illegal ... there are legal limits on how much interest can be charged on revolving credit (I believe Prime Rate plus X%, although I don't know what X is currently).

Second, a closed account means they will no longer allow you to charge on it, not that they don't expect you to pay it back or be subject to the repayment terms you agreed to. And I can't say I blame them for closing the account if they received no payment for the first two months the account was open, and it was already over the credit limit (I'm assuming $230 in fees, $60 in charges, probably around $5 in interest the first month, a late fee of $30, $6 in interest the second month, and now a late fee of $30 and overlimit fee of $30 = $391/$300 after two months, approximately)

If they are in fact calling you, as you say, 20 - 50 times a week, at all hours day and night, you may have some recourse. The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) protects the consumer from just this. I'd have to go back and check, but I believe in most states, legal call hours are 8am - 8pm 7 days a week. And maximum number of calls are one Right-Party Connect (meaning they talk to the account holder) per week. If they are violating the FDCPA, contact your state's Attorney General and see if you can get assistance.

Couple tips that might help out:

FDCPA only technically applies to third-party collection agencies, although most companies who use in-house collections voluntarily abide by these rules.

A right party connect (RPC) means they talk to the account holder...no answer, answering machine, kids answer, etc, means they can keep calling unlimited times until they get that RPC. If you aren't going to pay, can't pay, don't want to pay, or whatever, answer the phone. They will ask for you, "May I speak to John Smith?" ... answer, "This is John Smith". Now they jump into collection mode, "Mr. Smith, this is Joe Nobody from The Big Bad Bank, calling about your past due credit card" ... cut them off with "Ahh, ok, thank you" and hang-up. They just made a RPC, established their identity, and the call ended - viola, no more calls for 7 days. Granted, this has to be done weekly, but it works. If they call back, call them out "Are you aware you are in violation of the FDCPA?" and hang-up again. Use the acronym, I assure you every collector knows what FDCPA stands for ... and most know they are PERSONALLY liable for fines up to $5000 for violating it, and the company they represent is liable at a much higher rate.

Last tip, move to Pennsylvania. They can't garnish wages, sue you, put a lien on your property, they can only call once a MONTH per RPC, and they can't even call more than once a week if you don't answer. They can't call on Sunday, they can't call you at work if you submit a letter requesting such.
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#1 Consumer Suggestion

Pay your bill now

AUTHOR: julia - ()

POSTED: Sunday, June 23, 2002
I am sorry for your problems. You should have read your disclosure of terms when you applied for the credit card or the credit card agreement sent with the card. Most people avoid reading the fine print. These notices are considered binding legal documents and as with any credit card or loan if you use the services (i.e. make purchases or authorize charges) you agree to the terms of the credit card and accept them.

I work for a bank and know quite well how many consumers expect something for nothing. Far too often consumers fail to read the contracts before signing them and then cry wolf when faced with the penalities caused by their own actions. If you want to ruin your credit don't pay your bill.

You will get your summons to appear in court in front of a arbitrator (selected by the bank) explain you were ignorant and never read the agreements. The arbitrator will find you liable and will have to pay not only the bill you owe plus all associated court cost and attorney fees.

If you are still sitting there thinking you won't get sued, think again! In today's economy and with the fdic cracking down on banks catering to high risk individuals, banks by the thousands are utilizing all legal means to collect on debts even if they are a small balance. Banks can and do attach leins to property, garnish wages and place claims on tax refunds.

Do yourself a favor. Pay your bill now before you have to pay a much bigger bill. Next time read before you sign or use!
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