Bank of America waiving more fees automatically


Bank of America has come to its PR senses and decided to join other large banks in extending automatic waivers for certain fees in Sandy-hit areas.

The bank previously generated some negative headlines, to which it has become somewhat accustomed, for its insistence that Bank of America retail customers call in to customer service representatives if they wanted a fee waiver for hardship. Most other banks proactively waived fees, including the fee a customer pays when they use an ATM provided by another institution.

Some Bank of America customers took the bank to task via social media. The Wall Street Journal notes that one woman called the move "petty and classless." Another said she called the bank for help with waiving her fee, and the "customer service had no idea what she was talking about."

One commentator noted, that  "Of course, for those who have no electricity, phone, or Internet -- or cannot get around because of storm damage -- these requirements make assistance impossible."

It was probably a wise move to waive the fees, which will not likely have a meaningful effect on the bottom line, though it held the potential to sully the bank's reputation, which it has struggled to revive in recent years. Through all of this, Bank of America was not completely tone deaf. It contributed $1 million to support relief efforts, including $500,000 to the American Red Cross Hurricanes 2012 fund.

For more:
- here's a Deal Journal item

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