An Experience At A Local ATM Machine

[Reader Submitted] LETTER: For over ten years now, I have been using the ATM at Bank Of America as my default method of deposit. It is far more convenient and less time consuming to do so, as opposed to the lobby hours and wait time. I am very happy with their banking services.

A few years back, as an added measure of convenience, BOA did away with ATM deposit envelopes altogether. Now one could simply access his account at the ATM, and directly deposit cash or checks.

Over the years I have deposited over $100,000 this way and never was there any glitch whatsoever. That is, until March 17th, 2012.

Late one evening I went to make a deposit. I had two checks in hand. One for $17 and one for $100. I received a surprising message from the ATM after slipping the $100 check in. “Your check cannot be deposited or returned, no receipt is available.” I was so surprised that I started a new transaction and tried to deposit the $17 dollar check. I was hoping against hopes that when the slot opened for me to deposit the next check, I would somehow be able to salvage my first check of $100. Needless to say, that did not happen. I decided to “risk” the $17. check to see what would happen.

What did happen was that the ATM responded saying, “ Your check cannot be deposited or returned.” However, this time I was issued an image of the scanned check.

I called the bank to complain. After their own internal investigation, I received a letter informing me that the bank only located the $17 check. Naturally I immediately called BOA and reminded them that I did deposit a second check and truly the $100 check would also be found if I was given an opportunity to investigate. The bank was not taking too kindly to my arguments and frankly, I was running out of convincing words.

Finally as a last resort, I asked to be forwarded a copy of video footage from the time of the deposit and following day when the ATM would have been opened by bank employees. The representative asked me a few details pertaining to the $100 check, and said she will have the lead investigator call me. He never called.

Within a week I received a second letter from the bank informing that I was being given full credit for the $100 check. They informed that my claim had indeed been vindicated.

I still completely trust the system and still do not hesitate to use the ATM machine for deposits. As I stated above, I am still completely satisfied with Bank Of America and will continue on as a happy customer. However, when depositing a large check now, I hold it up for the video cameras to see and make sure that it is clear that I am putting it in to the ATM.

I do not expect any further such issues, however, needless to say, if such an event occurs again within the next ten years, I will become far more weary of using the ATM for deposits.

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  1. Is there any other way to keep proof that you have a check besides for holding it up to the camera? i use Wells fargo and i dont know where the cameras are.

  2. There is at least one bank in Lakewood that was bought out by another larger bank. There are sometimes no credit given for cash deposits. Always have a check deposited along with the cash.

  3. Fyi, my $40.00 incident with the drive-thru ATM at that location occurred on March 13. At least I received a transaction receipt, so I didn’t have to spend too much time dealing with this aggravation.

    Maybe there was some kind of malfunction during that week??

    Makes you kind of wary though..

  4. Now that we live in a technological world, machine glitches are bound to happen. Bank of America has excellent customer service, and they took care of this issue right away.

    If you ever feel that an issue is not being taken care of properly, file a police report.

  5. why didn.t you just go into the bank and talk to the manager the next morning? Im sure they would be able to clear it up easily.

  6. Maybe you mean leery.
    Definition of LEERY
    : suspicious, wary —often used with of

    I use Wells Fargo ATM and I like their system very much. They print out a photo of my checks and they print out a receipt. It’s an efficient and modern machine.

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