Compass Bank deposited check into WRONG account – refuses to correct its mistake

Reader mail:

I had a check mailed to my bank for deposit. It had my checking
account number typed on it for the depositing account. Someone with
thick fingers blundered it and deposited it to an AT&T account
instead. After multiple phone calls and trips to the local bank, I
still haven’t been able to get Compass Bank to correct the error. They
claim it was intended as a payment to AT&T! This all happened over a
year ago! I’m looking into what I need to do to get resolution on
this, but it’s not looking too good. Can I sue them in small claims
court (the amount was for $700+)? Any suggestions?’

In the future, don’t waste your time and energy on phone calls and trips to the bank, especially if you do NOT record the calls and conversations at the bank.
To prevail in court, you need to prove the following:

  • That Compass received the check.
  • That Compass  Bank did NOT deposit it in your account.
  • That Compass Bank refused to correct the error.

I’m assuming that you have the canceled check from whoever gave it to you and that’s how you know that it was deposited in the AT&T account.    It should show the account number you typed and obviously is made out to you, so the only thing left to prove is that Compass Bank refused to correct their error.

Some courts require that you send a WRITTEN demand prior to filing the lawsuit, so I suggest you do that.

Prepare your FACTUAL SUMMARY of events in chronological order, such as:

[DATE]:  mailed check for $…. made out to [you, your  business name] to Compass Bank for deposit to my account # [number].  My correct account number was typed on the check.

[DATE]:  [describe what happened next, list as many dates and summaries for calls and bank visits as possible]

And of course include your demand for immediate payment of the amount of the check + your damages.

I would request the interest according to the highest rate I’ve been paying.  If I paid 20% interest on credit cards, that’s $140 for one year for a $700 error.   Of course it would also include any bank fees incurred, such as NSF fees or account fees for dropping below the minimum balance for free accounts, etc.  It really depends on your individual situation.

Someone who subsequently had their phone or electric shut off because they didn’t have the money has far greater damages than someone with plenty of cash on hand.

Also, this is the kind of dispute I would ENJOY handling.

I provide dispute resolution services as part of the Flat Fee Debt Settlement.

I fully document my attempts to resolve the issues, I record the phone calls, communicate by fax and provide affidavits for my client if the dispute ends up in court.

I love to help people get their money back.

I’ve been providing these services to clients and they just paid the $300 CreditActivist fee, but I could also work on contingency, meaning that I get paid when you get your check.  I’ll try to create a separate dispute resolution services page this weekend.

In cases of documented wrong doing by corporations, the fee paid to me is part of the damages.  However, most corporations will not pay damages unless you sue.  I once had the Compass Bank attorney send me a $60 check to compensate for a $6 ridiculous fee — AFTER I published the press release: My 5/6/04 Compass Bank Press Release: A $6 Fee Instead Of A Reward For Returning $500

Here is an example of  collection lawyers conspiring with a dental office to DEFRAUD my client:

Fairfax Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery attorneys Cawthorn and Picard’s Illegal Collection Practices

They sent a partial refund and finally reported the judgment as paid (as required by law), but they did not pay my fee and they still overcharged my client.

She could have filed a complaint with the Bar, the attorney general and/or in state or federal court for numerous claims.

But, she has a job and a life and at least we had partial results and she enjoys the satisfaction that we exposed the crooks and the TRUTH about their deplorable practices are available free of charge to the public.

If these crooked attorneys don’t clean up their act, they will certainly be sued by OTHERS who find our fraud documentary and they can use it in their lawsuits to establish that Cawthorn & Picard defrauded other consumers.  I’ll be happy to provide my sworn testimony to authenticate our documentaries.

So I hope you finally get your money after submitting your written demand (review YOUR small claims rules).

If you decide to sue, be aware that you may actually be required to arbitrate (according to the bank terms), but I would ignore that and sue in small claims anyway.  It is quite likely they would settle after you served them.

And of course you could also publish your own documentary at any of the free blogs sites or at Liars and Cheats EXPOSED.
Also, I’m assuming that this is NOT the BBVA (formerly Compass Bank) I wrote about at BBVA Compass Bank CLOSED my Accounts to RETALIATE for my publications. It was always very confusing that there were two Compass Banks in America.

Obviously, keep in mind that your account might be closed too.

Good luck!  And feel free to post questions here and I hope you’ll update with the outcome.

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