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Report: #312993

Complaint Review: E*Trade - Internet

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  • Reported By: Indianapolis Indiana
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  • E*Trade Internet U.S.A.

E*Trade Financial E*Trade takes nearly a month to open a savings account! Ridiculously bad customer service causes a never-ending avalanche of errors. Internet

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In case you think what I am about to tell you is a rare occurrence, I was told by more than one of E*Trades very own Customer Non-Service Reps that what I was going through was "not upcommon". I also found other examples of customers being treated the same way as I was on the net, and they are included at the end of this account for comparison. Anyway, here's my story:

On 01/31/08 I got on E*Trade's website and signed up for their Complete Savings Account, then paying 4.4% interest, which was way better than my regular bank. I got an email back afterwards assuring me that in 2 to 3 business days the initial deposit would be transferred from my regular bank checking account to my new and shiny Complete Savings Account, and life would be wonderful.

I waited until after the three business days were up, and called in to ask what the delay was. I was told that in order to verify my identity they needed me to fax a copy of my driver's license and social security card. They said it was because I was using an identity theft protection service (LoudSiren, similar to LifeLock). I was OK with that, so I dug out my social security card and faxed it along with my driver's license the next day. The only thing that bugged me at that point was that they didn't bother to contact me in any way to tell me what they needed; I had to call them first.

On 02/08/08, a couple days after I faxed the info requested, I finally got a call from E*Trade telling me that they needed me to fax my driver's license and social security card. Evidently nobody enters information into a computer over there. I told them I had already faxed them on 02/06/08, and they proceeded to keep me on hold for about 25 minutes while they tried to find the fax. They never did, but I was told not to worry - that it would be processed soon anyway in about 2 to 3 more business days.

So after waiting for yet another three business days, I called them on 02/14/08 to find out yet again what the hold up was. As icing on the cake, E*Trade had decided to drop the interest they were paying on my non-existent Complete Savings Account from 4.4% to 4.1% somewhere in the mean time, making it even less an attractive proposition than it had already become. I was told by a nice young man named Matthew Sato that they had no record of the fax in their computer, and that sometimes they "get lost" if they are not readable, or if they don't go to the proper fax number. He suggested that I blow up the SS and DL cards as large as possible so they would be more readable, then fax them to a different number that he gave me. He told me to include my phone number so he could call me back and let me know that he got it. I did as requested that same day.

I still hadn't heard anything back by the next day, so I called Matt up to ask if he got the fax. He said no, but "the guy who is normally at that fax number isn't in today" (I wish I were making this up), and he gave me his direct fax line. That day I faxed the info they requested for the third time, along with a note on the cover sheet that said "Try not to lose it this time!".

I called in once after that in order to get confirmation that the fax was received, but was unable to get Matt on the phone, or anyone else who could find out for me. I called again on 02/20/08, and talked to a new guy, name unknown, who informed me that Matt evidently got the fax, but that by the time he did, the computer had already cancelled the account because it took longer than 10 days to get the info. He suggested that I start over from scratch with their website. I of course told him there was no damned way I was going through all this again. He asked me what I wanted him to do, and I said "go back in time three weeks and activate my account, or failing that, get an account opened for me ASAP". He told me that there was nobody there who could do something like that. I would need to call back the next day during regular business hours and talk to a manager. Wonderful. While I was on the phone with him, the E*Trade Bank commercial came on with the talking baby that touts the wonders of their Complete Savings Account. I mentioned the irony to him, and promised him that an account of my many sufferings at the hands of their "customer service" was going to end up on as many blogs as I can possibly find. Hence the reason you are now reading this.

So it's the Next Day, February 21, three weeks to the day after signing up for a savings account that would take "2 to 3 business days" to open, and I'm talking to another new guy, Kevin Stokes. Kev has me wait while he checks to verify that my driver's license and social security card are on file, and lo and behold, they are! He transfers me to a different guy, Mike Whylie, who can generate another account number for me, and make all my dreams come true. While I am waiting to get my new account number, the call is cut off, and I have to call him back. I get someone else on the phone, an older woman by the sound of it, didn't catch the name, who can't transfer me to my new friend Mike because he's on another call. She communicates with him somehow (via email or IM), and he texted that I will have to send in a check from my regular bank checking account in order to fund my E*Trade Complete Savings Account because the verification of my regular bank's info was "rejected". I told her there was no way I was doing business via snailmail, so just tell me why it was rejected, and I'll get the problem fixed. She couldn't, but said she would have My Good Friend Mike call me at work before the end of the day to give me my new account number, which I would have to reference when I send in my check via snailmail. Right after I hung up with her I signed on to E*Trade's website, and it showed my regular bank account had been entered, and was at "unverified" status. I clicked on an option to Verify Online, and filled in the necessary info. After a few minutes, I got a messge back saying that my account was verifed. According to their website, I am now able to transfer money from my checking account to my new Complete Savings Accout IF I HAD ONE. So if I can do this myself on their website, then why can"t they??? Needless to say, I did NOT get a call back from My New Best Friend The Uncaring Slack-Jawed Idiot Mike by the end of the day.

The next day, on February 22, now three weeks and one day from the date I signed up for my E*Trade Complete Savings Account That Would Take Only Two To Three Business Days To Open, I called E*Trade up and asked for Mike Whylie. I got his voice mail. I left my name and work number at around 9:20am, reminding him that he was supposed to have called me the previous day, and told him to call me back that day. There was no way that I could get an account opened unless he gave me the new account number to write on my check that I would have to now send in via snailmail. But it doesn't really matter any more, because My Good Friend Mike The Worthless Scumbag NEVER CALLED ME BACK TO GIVE ME THE ACCOUNT NUMBER. And by never I mean NEVER. As I write this, a full week has passed since Mr. Whylie supposedly generated that new account number for me. It's been six days since I left voice mail reminding him that he owed me a call. That makes it nearly a month since I signed up for their now world famous Complete Savings Account That Would Take Only Two To Three Business Days To Open. If he hasn't called me back by now, I'm pretty damned sure that he never will.

After this disgusting experience with E*Trade, and finding untold numbers of similar horror stories on the internet, I decided not to open a savings account with them after all. Even if they did give me a new accouint number, and I mailed in a check to open the account, it would have taken about a month total just to open a savings account - something that a real bank could do in a matter of minutes!. The good news is that, after waiting for most of the day for a call back from E*Trade, I contacted Discover Bank the afternoon that I left voice mail for My Good Friend Mike Who Saved Me From Making A Terrible Mistake By Making Sure That I Would Never Do Business With E*Trade For Any Reason Whatsoever, and they set up an MMA savings account for me at 3.8%, only 0.3% lower than the E*Trade offer. They even arranged to have the money transferred from my existing checking account to get the account funded - all in under 10 minutes! And the money was transferred from my existing checking account into the new money market account within one business day, just as Discover Bank promised. E*Trade literally could not accomplish in over three weeks what Discover Bank could get done in less than 10 lousy minutes of my time!! Discover Bank even gave me $20 cash for opening my new account because of a special they were running that month. I'm glad I found someone else to take my $12,000 because there is no way that the extra 0.3% APR E*Trade offers is worth the intense aggravation caused by E*Trade's so-called "customer service".

Needless to say by now, it is my contention that E*Trade customer service just plain sucks. I really don't remember ever dealing with such a disorganized, incompetent, and uncaring group at any other point in my life. The only thing they are skilled at is saying "I'm sorry" over and over again until you want to climb right through the phone line and bash their collective faces in. I don't care how many times they say "I'm sorry" when their actions indicate over and over again that they don't give half a d**n if they ever get my business or not!! E*Trade advertises their Complete Savings Account on TV using that cute commercial with the talking baby. In it, they boast that they open "a thousand new accuonts a day". What they are not telling you is that their less-than-useless customer service people can make it virtually impossible to open that account, so you have to be extremely persistent if you want it to ever happen. Based on my experience, it's just way too much time and effort to get a slightly better interest rate, and then end up having to continually worry that your money is being handled by people who don't know what they are doing!

The punch line to the joke is that this happens all the time, not just to me in this one particular instance. Here are some other examples that I found on the net, some almost identical to mine, some even worse:

I tried to set up an account at E*Trade's bank. I wish I had read more of the reviews first. It's almost as if they don't want me to set up an account with them! I've been met with nothing but resistance at anything I've tried to do. Fortunately they don't have any of my money, at least not yet.

I was actually trying to open a small amount Cd because of the rate. But it never happened. I had spoken with 2 customer service reps that said they were waiting for my ss card and driver license copy. After about a month of going back and forth I finally spoke with a rep that said well the account had been closed after 10 days of it being opened because they needed info. Ok, so why didn't the other 2 reps tell me that? Wasting my time and my money loosing money. Why? Incompetant people or bank or both.

Dishonest SOB's. They froze my account with more than a 100K total assets. After a mix up with another account, I received a terse letter explaining while they are sorry, they took all appropriate actions! The only problem is, I was told the matter would be cleared up in just 24 hours...when it initially occurred. 7 and half months later, SEVEN AND A HALF MONTHS later they send me a non-apology in essence. I have begun legal proceedings against them. Absolutely the worst!

I have been with E-Trade for about six months, and I'm so frustrated with their lack of respect and concern for the customer's needs. They placed a restriction on my account because "they were unsure if I was the one making purchases," though if they were that concerned they could have called me. When I called them after being denied access to my account at the atm, that's when they claimed they need to verify some of my transactions. it's been five days and I still can not use the atm, transfer money to another account (that is also with them), check my balances or do any other banking transactions with them.

Etrade deserves a negative star for how incompetent they are. I just closed my account after 4 months. They took two months just to get my wife added to the account. Customer service is the worst. They had me fax in her info twice and did not bother to call back. Said I didn't send it. Finally got someone who amazingly found it!!! Then when she logged in, one of these new security questions which is done by a third party service asked her where her ex-husband lived!!! Now how unethical is that. I called and they said that it is not their problem. YES IT IS! You have my money, you respect me by not asking my wife such questions. OH, and because she did not know the answer, it blocked her. So I had to call to get her switched back on, which only took 50 minutes!!!! Not a week after that, I looked at my account balance in my savings (5.05%apy) and $1000 was missing!!!! Plus, my two transfers were stopped! I called and got a run-around for three days. Finally they admitted they messed up and put the money back in. Didn't offer anything but a shallow apology. I don't know what is going on up there but I am not standing around to see. I have closed both my and my parents accounts with them and moved to another provider. Everyone beware of Etrade.

From There are way too many websites complaining about E*Trade to even count, so this is just a small sample.

Mr. Justice
Indianapolis, Indiana

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 02/28/2008 01:40 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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