AUTO-PAY, ACH, and....Was I wrong? Update. 
Tuesday, December 29, 2015, 11:07 AM
Posted by Administrator
I have written previously on the subject of letting creditors take money directly from your bank account. In that entry, I reported what some bank-people had told me about stopping these payments when, for instance, you are anticipating filing bankruptcy or otherwise object to allowing a creditor the power to dip into your money.

Sometimes, it is a good idea to wait to file bankruptcy. Do you need your tax refund money to fix your teeth or your roof? In the meantime, maybe you want to stop paying your bills...including the payments that come right out of your account (though, of course, allowing payments to come right out of your account WAS a BAD IDEA).

Here is my understanding (based on conversations with even more bank-people than previously including two who...based upon my past experience....know what they are talking about):

1) Stop the ACH payment. (Put a "stop" on it same as you would stop a check.) BUT, the creditor could try to take $1 more or a $1 less than the amount you agreed upon and this could/would result in the "stop" not working. You could dispute the payment with the bank but, in the meantime, you won't have the money.

2) CLOSE THE ACCOUNT. Don't sort-of close it (I mention this because it seems to me some bank-people are work adverse and many are lose-an-account adverse). Close it. Don't link it with a new account. This may take a few weeks to accomplish (because of checks needing to clear), so, open another account (at another bank+), NOW and start doing check-writing out of the new account.

Two things (really, three):
A) The "+" I have next to "at another bank" is there for a reason: Go to another bank. Even if your present bank would like you to open the new account there. Why? Because of the sayings "Just because you are paranoid doesn't mean people aren't out to get you." also, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." and "A stitch in time saves nine." (Note: I am a great believer in the truth of old sayings. The truth in them is the reason they have stood the test of time. So, I say: "Go the extra mile." and start fresh at a new bank.*)
B) DON'T LET ANY CREDITORS DIP INTO YOUR NEW ACCOUNT. (Buy a book of stamps at the post office. Send creditors a check. This puts 2 wonderful layers of security between your money and people you owe it to: SPACE----the distance your check will travel from the mailbox to, for instance, a creditors PO Box in Des Moines, Iowa......and TIME--the time it will take your check to travel by truck and plane to Des Moines. Let the SPACE/TIME continuum work for you!)
C)The "*" after "...a new bank." is also there for a reason. I will do an entry about credit unions, soon, and explain. (Update: I did write about it....see the entry, above.)

The use of computers, satellites and fiber optic cable to digitally/electronically transfer funds over great distances in sub-milliseconds is a wonderful thing......for big corporations...NOT (usually) for you and me.

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