Idiotic Online Banking Problems

A while back The Wife expressed dissatisfaction with Stagecoach Bank. (Not the actual name of the bank in question.) She wanted to switch to another bank and that was okay with me. Stagecoach Bank had done something rather stupid with putting a hold on a cashier’s check and that caused us to delay closing escrow on Soffit House, which got me pretty steamed.

Also a while back, the partners at the firm told me that they had a great banking relationship with Big Manhattan Bank (also not the real name of the bank in question), which had a few branches in California. They were so happy with it that they were willing to bank by courier — the bank’s courier would come every other day to the office and run stuff down to Santa Clarita where the nearest branch was, and they didn’t have to do anything. And at the time, direct deposit was available only to people who had their personal accounts with Big Manhattan Bank, which was at the time not me because I was with Stagecoach Bank.

The Wife and I heard that Big Manhattan Bank was going to open an office up here in our part of the world soon, so we resolved to wait until that happened, and switch.

After a time, I stopped being irritated at Stagecoach Bank because it stopped charging me a fee for keeping a savings account. And then it stopped charging a fee for keeping a checking account. And in fact my experiences with Stagecoach Bank got better and better and I was pretty happy with it by the end of the day.

But then Big Manhattan Bank bought out Distressed Cascadian Bank (again, a pseudonym), also known as DisCas, which had some local branches. And to promote the newly-created Really Big Manhattan Bank, we got a promotional flyer saying “DisCas is now Big Manhattan!” and offering us a $100 incentive to open up accounts with direct deposit there.

So we did it. The Wife had apparently not ever gotten over her irritation at Stagecoach Bank and hey, a C-note is a C-note.

We went to the local branch, which was covered in the corporate logo of Big Manhattan Bank. We signed a banking agreement with Big Manhattan Bank, spoke with a representative who identified himself as working for Big Manhattan Bank, gave us a business card with the Big Manhattan Bank name and logo on it, tapped into a computer that had Big Manhattan Bank’s name on the splash screen, got issued checks (both temporary at the branch, and custom checks that came in the mail) and ATM cards with Big Manhattan Bank’s name and logo on them.

So the time came to pay bills for the month. I went to and put in our chosen user name and password. Nothing. It didn’t recognize me at all.

I had The Wife try. She opened up her computer, and got right on. She passed it along to me and I registered all our vendors and got bills set up. But I still couldn’t get on with my computer. And that didn’t make any sense. And I couldn’t check on the account’s status so I was walking around with no idea of how much money I had in the bank from day to day. This makes me anxious to not know how much money I have. Even if it’s not a lot, at least I know.

So after a week of this, I called customer support and the CSR on the other end said, “Oh, are you a former DisCas customer?”

“Well, no. It was a DisCas bank and–“

“So are you a– sorry, finish what you were saying, sir?” (At least she apologized for interrupting me.)

“The branch used to be a DisCas bank, but then you guys bought it, and when we went there to open up the account, it was all Big Manhattan.”

“So you are a former DisCas customer.”

“Well, not really, but –“

“Try using I can’t help you with that but I can give you a phone number to call for support for that website.”

I tried It worked great, first time out. The Wife said that it had never even occurred to her that I would be using anything but, that she wouldn’t have imagined or dreamed of going to Big Manhattan Bank’s website.

Made me feel kind of stupid.

Burt Likko

Pseudonymous Portlander. Homebrewer. Atheist. Recovering litigator. Recovering Republican. Recovering Catholic. Recovering divorcé. Recovering Former Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. House Likko's Words: Scite Verum. Colite Iusticia. Vivere Con Gaudium.