Chase incorrectly claims woman is dead

Just when you thought you knew all the ways that Chase could possibly screw up someones life, they come up with a new one, claiming you are dead.  God only knows what possessed Chase to claim this woman was dead when she was in fact very much alive.

SANFORD, Florida– A Florida woman says she’s having numerous financial troubles because of a bank error that caused Chase Bank USA to declare her dead last November.

Wrenella Pierre has filed a lawsuit and Chase officials said Monday they’re investigating how the mistake happened.

When Pierre and her husband built their home in 2007, they got two mortgages through Chase.
According to the lawsuit, the bank notified credit-reporting agencies last year that Pierre had died. They sent a letter of condolence to the family, saying someone from the bank would be in touch about the mortgage.

Pierre says she notified bank officials that she was alive and also went to a local branch to correct the mistake.

A month later, the lawsuit alleges, credit agencies still reported her dead.

JPMorgan Chase guilty (again) of fraud

There are quite a few cases of alleged or admitted fraud that JPMorgan Chase has been involved in recently I’m losing count.  Well here is another one (Wall Street Journal, JPMorgan Settles Muni-Bid Case, 7/8/11).  Does this bank have an ethical bone in its body?

J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. agreed to a $228 million settlement to charges it rigged nearly 100 transactions involving municipal-bond auctions, federal and state authorities said.

It is the third, and largest, settlement reached with a bank in a continuing investigation into an alleged nationwide conspiracy to rig municipal-bond bidding processes. Banks bid for the business to invest the proceeds municipalities raise by selling bonds. Last year, Bank of America Corp. agreed to pay $137 million and in May, UBS AG agreed to pay $160.2 million.

The Securities and Exchange Commission, in a civil lawsuit, alleged that J.P. Morgan, the nation’s second largest by assets, manipulated the bidding process from 1997 to 2005. The SEC said agents handling the auctions gave J.P. Morgan a “last look” at all the bids, thereby allowing J.P. Morgan to win the auctions. The SEC complaint also alleged J.P. Morgan submitted intentionally losing bids to allow other banks to win auctions, and steered business to the agents that rigged the bids. The SEC said the rigging happened on at least 93 transactions in 31 states.

The New York-based bank said in a statement that it does not “tolerate anticompetitive activity or violations of law” and that the investigation focused on “a small desk that was discontinued.” The bank also pointed out that the employees, who are no longer at the bank, hid their actions from management.

J.P. Morgan said the net total it would pay was $211.2 million: $51.2 million to the SEC; $50 million to the Internal Revenue Service; $35 million to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency; and $75 million to the states involved. The bank said the payments wouldn’t materially affect its earnings.

There are concurrent court settlements with the various parties involved and there is some overlap, so while the agreement with the states is actually for $92 million, $17 million of that will go to other agencies, said Susan E. Kinsman, a spokeswoman for Connecticut State Attorney General George Jepsen, who headed the investigations for the states.

It is the second settlement J.P. Morgan has reached with the SEC in just over two weeks. In late June, the bank agreed to pay $153.6 million to settle charges its employees aggressively sold a complex debt security while failing to inform the investors about certain material facts.

The muni-auction settlements also included enforcement actions from the Federal Reserve and the OCC demanding that the bank increase its risk compliance management.

Federal tax laws require proceeds of municipal-bond sales to be invested at fair-market value. Bidding agents typically organize a process in which banks compete on bids for the investment business in order to ensure the fair-market-value test is met.

The Justice Department has identified more than a dozen banks as alleged co-conspirators in the bid-rigging probe.

However, federal and state agencies allege widespread collusion between the bidding agents and big banks corrupted the process across dozens of states during the late 1990s and first half of the 2000s. The Justice Department has identified more than a dozen banks as alleged co-conspirators. To date, 18 people have been charged.

“When powerful financial institutions … conspire with each other to intentionally violate regulations designed to ensure fair investment prices, the integrity of the municipal marketplace becomes corrupted,” said Elaine C. Greenberg, head of the SEC’s Municipal Securities and Public Pensions Unit.

As part of its deal with the Justice Department, J.P. Morgan won’t face a criminal antitrust prosecution if it meets a series of conditions, including cooperating with the investigation. The bank also admitted and accepted responsibility for the illegal conduct of its former employees.

The SEC also said Thursday that it has barred former J.P. Morgan vice president James L. Hertz from the securities industry based on his guilty plea last December in connection with municipal-bond transactions. Mr. Hertz has been cooperating with the probe.

Chase’s $10,000,000 overdraft solution

Making an account overdrawn by $10 million to restrict access to an account sure makes it sound like Chase doesn’t really know what they are doing.

I opened a joint account and I’ve been a loyal customer of Chase for about 12 years. I have great credit history. I deposited several hundred dollars when I opened an additional checking account online last weekend. Then, when the business week started, I got a series of 4 text messages telling me my account was overdrawn by $9,999,135.00  and did I want to cover that overdraft with a transfer from my other accounts. Ha. Like that would be possible.  I didn’t get a call from a Chase person–just the shocking texts. And then when I called, they said “Oh. Yes. That’s our way of locking down your account in case there has been fraud.” Sure, because a sudden $9,999,135.00 withdrawal doesn’t freak me out as much as real fraud. If they want to do that, I at least deserve a personal phone call to explain. instead, they’d rather give you a heart attack by sending you a phantom text message with an almost $10 million dollar apparent w/d. That is beyond stupid.

Then they said there was a problem with my SSN and I had to go to the SSA to get a piece of paper verifying I am me and then make more time to go in to a Chase branch. Seriously? Who has time for that? And I’ve been a verified customer for YEARS. Then I got smart and told them it prob wasn’t my SSN with a problem; it might be the joint account holder. They said “Let me look. …oh….hm…Oh you’re right.” What I don’t understand is, why does Chase even “open” an account that isn’t verified? I cannot access the initial deposit until this mess is resolved. Chase should simply deny the application instead of taking my money and then locking it up. They should approve me but not the other holder, whom I have known for years and saw the SSN card myself in order to enter the info online for the application. They should let ME access my money. Why they would ‘approve’ an account only to promptly close it is RIDICULOUS. they are not protecting me from fraud–they are removing my own access to my own money. Right now, fraudsters are more likely to get my money than I am. I cannot believe Chase’s policies are so ridiculous. JUST DENY THE APPLICATION. Don’t accept it, immediately restrict it, and then keep my money. When I get this mess resolved, by re-opening the account that I JUST opened 7 days ago, I will be sure to close it for good. I am not doing anymore business with Chase. I will open this account at Wells Fargo or Some local credit union instead of dealing with Chase’ stupid policies and very very impersonal banking. I even requested a manager contact me, and they wrote me back saying, sorry. You have to call us again. We can’t tell you anything.

Please just talk to us Chase

A reader sent us this:

We need help on trying to determine what we owe chase on a vehicle.  We were making payments regularly, but business went bad and had to file bankruptcy so the truck had to be included.  While weathering job loss and poor economy we were unable to maintain bankruptcy payments.  I have tried to repeatedly to contact them to make the back payments or work out something.  They would not respond and then sent a wrecker to reposses it, but it wasn’t here.  We want to settle the debt, but don’t know what to do.  We feel that our hands are tied.  We don’t want the truck to go back b/c we feel that we wouldn’t have any way of capping the ceiling of the debt.  We feel that they are crooks and don’t know what is in our best interest in handling this matter.  Has anyone had a similar issue with any results?

Chase can’t properly identify own check, has innocent man jailed

Chase seems to have done just about everything wrong in this case.  First, they had a man jailed claiming he presented them with a forged check. That check was valid and had in fact been issued by Chase bank itself.  Second, Chase let the man stay in jail over the weekend rather than doing everything they could to make sure he got out after they determined he was no in the wrong.  Third, after an entire year of trying to get Chase to even acknowledge the mistake (much less reimburse him for all the costs he experience because of their mistake) they only apologized after the local media ran a story and contacted Chase.

Here is the story:

AUBURN, Wash. – Buying his own home was a big accomplishment for construction worker, Ikenna Njoku, of Auburn. He’s only 28 years old.

“I was really excited. For the first time, I actually got to buy a lawn mower, mow my lawn and everything,” said Njoku.
Njoku qualified for the first time home buyer rebate on his tax return.
“It was really important, I had a vehicle I was looking on paying off,” said. Njoku. And it wasn’t just any vehicle. “It was a 2001 Infinity I-30, silver…just like my favorite car, “he said.
Njoku signed up to have the rebate deposited directly into his Chase Bank account. But when the IRS rebate arrived, there was a problem.  Chase had closed Njoku’s account because of overdrawn checks in the past. The bank deducted $600 to cover what he owed them and mailed him a cashier’s check for the difference–$8,463.21.
But when Njoku showed up at the Chase branch near his house intending to cash the check, he was in for a nasty surprise.
The check had Njoku’s name and address on it and was issued by JP Morgan Chase. But the Chase Customer Banker who handles large checks at the Auburn branch was immediately suspicious.
“I was embarrassed,” Njoku said. “She asked me what I did for a living. Asked me where I got the check from, looked me up and down—like ‘you just bought a house in Auburn, really?’ She didn’t believe that,” he said.
The Customer Banker said the check looked fake, so she took it, along with Njoku’s driver license and credit card, and called Bank Support.
After waiting for about 15 minutes, Njoku said he got impatient and told Chase he was leaving to do an important errand. By the time he got back, the bank was closed. Njoku said he called customer service and asked them what he should do. He says they told him to go back to the bank the next day to get his money.
But when Njoku arrived, it wasn’t the money that was waiting for him.
“They just threw me in jail; they called the police and said this guy has a fraudulent check,” Njoku said.
Auburn police arrested him for forgery – a felony crime.
“I was like – you’re making a mistake, you’re making a mistake, don’t take me to jail, I got work tomorrow. I can’t afford to miss work,” he said.
Njoku was taken to jail on June 24, 2010, which was a Thursday. The next day, Chase Special Investigations, realized it was a mistake. The check was legitimate. The Investigator called Auburn Police and left a message with the detective handling the case, but it was her day off. So Njoku stayed in jail for the entire weekend. Finally, on Monday, he was released.
Auburn Police Commander Dave Colglazier said Chase could have done a lot more to let them know they’d locked up an innocent man.
“We do have a main line that comes into our front office,” he said. “There are ways to reach someone 24/7 at a police department.”
For Njoku, going to jail for five days meant a lot more than just losing his freedom. He said the entire time he was “just stressed out…trying to figure out what was going on with my vehicle.  I love my vehicle,” he said.
Njoku’s car had been towed from the bank parking lot and his check seized as evidence.
“I had to wait a couple of weeks,” he said, “and my car got sold, auctioned off.”
Njoku says he didn’t have the money to pay the impound fees and fines to get his car back before it was sold.  He said he also lost his job because he didn’t show up for work while he was in jail.
After all of that, Njoku said he never heard a word from Chase.
“They haven’t even sent me a letter or apologized,” he said. “It’s been a year we’ve been trying to contact these guys.”
Finally, A Seattle attorney offered to help. Last week, Felix Luna sent Chase a scathing letter. Read the attorneys’ letter to Chase
“It’s one thing to make a mistake,” Luna said. “It’s one thing to make multiple errors of judgment like Chase has made and then, once you realize that your error has caused such harm to somebody else, to just ignore it for a year. I think he deserved better. I think all their customers do.”
Like Njoku, KING 5 had a difficult time getting answers from Chase. A week after first contacting them, they sent a two line e-mail.
“We received the letter and are reviewing the situation.  We’ll be reaching out to the customer,” wrote Darcy Donoahoe-Wilmot, from Chase Media Relations.
But on Thursday, Chase issued an apology.
Njoku said that even after he got out of jail, he said was confused and upset. “For a month, two months, I was just down and depressed,” he said.
He’s still happy he bought his house, but sad that his experience with his own bank was so humiliating.
“They treated me like a criminal,” he said.
Here is the follow up story:

AUBURN, Wash. – Chase Bank has issued an apology for having a customer arrested for trying to cash a Chase cashier’s check at a bank branch in Auburn.

Ikenna Njoku, 28, was accused of forging the check which had been mailed to him by Chase. The customer banker who handles large checks for the Chase branch told KING 5 the check looked fake, so she called police. Njoku was arrested and taken to jail June 24, 2010.

Read the original story here

The next day, Chase Special Investigations realized there had been a mistake and the check was legitimate. According to the police report, the investigator left a voice mail for a detective, but it was her day off, so no one heard the message until the following Monday.
Njoku spent five days and four nights in jail before being released.
“This is a very unfortunate situation,” wrote Darcy Donahoe-Wilmot of Chase Public Relations. “We apologize to Mr. Njoku and deeply regret what happened to him. We are working quickly to understand all the details so we can reach a fair resolution.”

New Chases mortgage modification class-action lawsuit

A class action lawsuit has been filed against Chase Home Finance LLC and JPMorgan Chase, N.A. in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, alleging that defendants reneged on a promise to modify troubled mortgages.  The class action is brought on behalf of the following class of persons:

All mortgagors in the the State of California whose home mortgage loans are or were serviced by Chase Home Finance LLC or JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. and who (a) have attempted to obtain permanent loan modifications from Chase Home Finance LLC or JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A. through the Home Affordable Modification Program (“HAMP”) or similiar loan modification programs; and (b) have made payments pursuant to a HAMP Trial Period Plan (“TPP”) or any similiar temporary modification agreement offered by Defendants.

For more information on the Chase Home Finance & JPMorgan Chase mortgage loan modification class action lawsuit, read the Chase Home Finance & JPMorgan Chase class action lawsuit complaint.

For information about this class action, contact paralegal Nick Wallace or attorneys Gretchen Obrist or Lynn Sarko at 800.776.6044 or via email at

WordPress Themes