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Washington Mutual Bank
Old 04-30-2008, 03:37 PM   #1
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Washington Mutual Bank

I opened a free checking account with lifetime checks at WaMu recently. Mainly, I wanted a bank with convenient branches in my after-retirement location. Today, they told me that my paychecks will be held for two weeks because I could not produce a pay stub. I work for a small business that doesn’t write out pay stubs and frankly, I’m not about to show them the paper I have that shows the by-monthly breakdown. I really put up a stink and a manager approved my deposit for immediate availability today. The teller whispered to me that next time I ought to cash my check at the bank that issued the check and bring the cash over to WaMu, some four blocks away. There are so many things abut this that bug me, particularly that if I did have a pay stub, I wouldn’t want to show it to anyone at the bank, what right do they have? In 50+ years of banking, this is the first time this issue has come up. I was lucky I didn't deposit it in the ATM!

So, I’m drafting a letter asking them to waive this rule for my account if they are interested in keeping my business. Funny thing is that banks seem to really want the over 50 age group, after all we do put a lot of lump sums through banks. (I have two other open checking accounts; maybe I won't phase one of them out after all.)
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Old 04-30-2008, 03:48 PM   #2
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How aggravating! I agree, they have no right to do that.

For all I know, my bank could be the same way. My paychecks are deposited electronically. For a while, my bank was holding the funds for two or three days. That was aggravating since I am a federal employee! It's not like my employer is going to bounce a check. However, it appears that my bank has stopped doing that.
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Old 04-30-2008, 03:56 PM   #3
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I have deposited one or two paychecks at WaMu before and the hold was only a few days, understandably because it was a new account. It might not get much older!
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Old 04-30-2008, 04:02 PM   #4
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So where is this mysterious after-retirement location? Northern California? I would imagine that you have a lot of options - - nearly anywhere away from SF would lower your expenses, from what I understand.
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Old 04-30-2008, 04:57 PM   #5
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I've never had that with WaMu...used to deposit checks but switched to direct deposit about 10-12 years ago. DD is always available immediately.

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Old 04-30-2008, 05:10 PM   #6
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So where is this mysterious after-retirement location? Northern California? I would imagine that you have a lot of options - - nearly anywhere away from SF would lower your expenses, from what I understand.
Hopefully, at least for a while, I'll be in the neighborhood instead of the financial district when I need to go to an ATM or branch. My other two banks are convenient to work but aren't as close to home--those WaMu's are everywhere.

I'm starting to seriously think about options out of the City but may have to stay near my HMO which seems to limit me to very expensive areas.

Or I could do as one of my great aunts did; she kept $15,000 in a Whitman's Sampler candy box, apparently for ready cash, no ATMs back them. Legend is she travelled from the mid-west to California with a lot of cash sewn into the hem of her skirts. I still have a fondness for that chocolate.
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Old 04-30-2008, 05:16 PM   #7
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I've never had that with WaMu...used to deposit checks but switched to direct deposit about 10-12 years ago. DD is always available immediately.

R
To be fair to WaMu policy, I should add that my employer writes the pay checks in ink, that might be a red flag for them. Four years ago on April Fool's Day we had a break-in at the office. They broke into a file cabinet, got the checks and TYPED themselves pay checks. Long story but the funniest part was that they ate all of the food in the office and a banana peel returned to my desk was taken in as evidence.
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Old 04-30-2008, 05:17 PM   #8
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I know some people that still do that, too - - maybe just two or three thousand, and maybe not in a candy box, but the same idea. It's probably very convenient sometimes, but I would be afraid to do it!

Health care has become important to all of us in the past few years, as health expenses go through the roof. I can see why you want to stay near your HMO.
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Old 05-01-2008, 09:59 AM   #9
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... particularly that if I did have a pay stub, I wouldn’t want to show it to anyone at the bank, what right do they have?

What data, pray tell, would be on a pay stub that c/would cause you to be so paranoid?
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Old 05-01-2008, 01:30 PM   #10
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What data, pray tell, would be on a pay stub that c/would cause you to be so paranoid?
Gross income, income tax withheld, etc. The one paper I do have from my employer also shows what they paid me last year, what my raise was.... It is truly an internal document, on yellow lined paper, at that! Paranoid?
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Old 05-01-2008, 05:50 PM   #11
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WaMu is out of the dog house. I heard from the manager. Apparently there was a mis-communication, the hold should be two days, tops for a new customer, for a local bank, never two weeks. No pay stub is required.
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Old 05-01-2008, 05:56 PM   #12
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what right do they have?
They're giving you cash in exchange for some little printed piece of paper you're handing them.
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Old 05-01-2008, 05:59 PM   #13
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They're giving you cash in exchange for some little printed piece of paper you're handing them.
Are those little numbers on the statements the same as cash? Time for me to take a class in Econ. 101.
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Old 05-01-2008, 06:17 PM   #14
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Time for me to take a class in Econ. 101.
You may be interchanging "cash" with "currency." Currency is a subset of cash. But not all cash is currency.
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Old 05-01-2008, 06:31 PM   #15
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You may be interchanging "cash" with "currency." Currency is a subset of cash. But not all cash is currency.
Interchange, oh, I get it, like the freeway. Nevermind, please refer to my signature line.
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