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Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please??? (Resolved Nice!!)

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 6:34 pm
by adam61
Like many here I saw Ally's 1% bonus for new money deposited by 10/21 and jumped on it. I made sure to register correctly. deposit the funds before 10/21, never touch them, and meet all other stipulations which I read closely. Well here's the issue and I'm sure there's a bit of blame on my record keeping, but I feel very taken advantage of. I deposited $85k on 10/18 and they show that. However their system doesn't log if you were registered or not, and when I noticed on the forum people were getting their expect your bonus soon e-mails I did not.

So I reached out first by secure message then 3 phone calls, escalating each time extremely politely. I got a final response from a manager today saying their system says my e-mail didn't fully register and I would be out the $850 too bad no backup options. In hindsight yes I wished I saved the October e-mail saying congratulations on enrolling, but it deleted as it's over 90 days old. They said I should have gotten an e-mail in January, but as I wasn't properly enrolled I didn't get it. So it's he said/they said at this point and they aren't bending.

Just really want to know what my options are I left it there 5 months at a not top of market rate for that great bonus, trusting everything was cool. My next thought was to respond I was sorry they weren't able to resolve it equitably and file an OCC and State compliant and see if anything comes of it (unlikely since I lack compelling proof). But, I wanted to hear come Boglehead options?

Final Message below with resolution...
Well lesson learned for better record retention, but also some good news. I called with my last courteous, but direct phone call and gave the case number and was immediately transferred to a manager who reiterated they were sorry, but they had to apply the bonus fairly to those who specifically followed the rules and because I had no documentation there was no further recourse.

I politely stated I understood their position, but as I felt it was bad faith since I followed every other possible rule and it was disappointing to me they got me on a "gotcha" I would follow up with a compliant to the OCC and CFPB and a certified letter to them to that effect. The manager placed me on hold for a good 10-15 minutes to "check something". She came back on and said they were researching in more detail and would call me back by EOD.

About 15 minutes later a very nice lady who said she was a VP of Customer Relations said since every single other step was followed and it was unclear in their database research why the e-mail didn't make the bonus list and was not paid I would have the $850 credited by EOD Friday. :D

So lesson learned for next time don't trust the system make a copy of everything, but big points to Ally for owning up that it was likely a glitch on their side and fixing it promptly. Thanks for the advice for now and the future Bogleheads!!

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 6:44 pm
by Jags4186
You can file a CFPB complaint, write to attorney general, etc. but I’ve noticed banks in the last 1-2 years are not as quick to jump to complaints of these kinds.

I’d move the money now if that’s what you want as there is no need to keep the money there in order to be bonus eligible.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:05 am
by adam61
Ok any other tips or thoughts? Going to make the call this week, on how nuclear to go.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:14 am
by Doohop65
The long and short is they owe you nothing and probably aren’t going to bend. I had a similar instance with another large bank and their “gotcha” stipulations to receive a bonus.

I suggested to the branch manager that opened my accounts this was a great way to have my money leave along with any other future relationships. She didn’t care. Rules are rules and I didn’t meet them was her take.

I suggest you do what I am doing. Find another institution and move on. The days of good faith are long gone. I don’t know that there is anything we do about it. I suggest you work the system to win as financial institutions are doing the same.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:23 am
by RickBoglehead
This ^^^

When you got the email that confirmed your enrollment, you could have saved it, printed it, etc. It was very clear that the email you enroll with needed to match the email that was primary on the account. First thing I did was verify what email was primary, then registered. I carefully followed the instructions, got the confirms when I expected them, and got my $2,000 of bonus last week (funds removed in mid-January to Vanguard).

There were no games here, no attempts to hide anything or deceive anyone. Those that followed the laid out procedure got a bonus, or more than one if you carefully followed the procedure (individual account receives and holds funds).

I'd suggest the OP move on.

Some years back TCF Bank added fees in the fine print of a multipage statement (fine print took many pages). I never saw it, saw the $10 monthly fee right away, went into branch, complained. Assistant Manager said that Branch Manager needed to make his numbers. I said "do you mean his account closing numbers?" and closed my accounts. Walked to PNC (along with many others). Opened my individual and business accounts, all free, all low/no minimums. Finally they made the business accounts have minimums and required me to have several for my DBAs. I asked them to fix it, they said sorry, and I left them. Huntington seems to be keeping their word so far.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:37 am
by MikeG62
adam61 wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 6:34 pm
Like many here I saw Ally's 1% bonus for new money deposited by 10/21 and jumped on it. I made sure to register correctly. deposit the funds before 10/21, never touch them, and meet all other stipulations which I read closely.

I got a final response from a manager today saying their system says my e-mail didn't fully register and I would be out the $850 too bad no backup options.
It always seemed to me that Ally would look for any opportunity to avoid paying the bonus based upon some technicality. This is why we placed the funds at Ally in October and did not have any activity in our accounts between those deposits and the posting of the bonuses (leaving the funds in the original no penalty CD's (one for my wife and one for me) even though we could have closed and re-opened new no penalty CD's when the rate increased by 10-15bps). Figured better safe than sorry.

Is there anyway you can contact your ISP and see if they can get a copy of the e-mail you said you got?

I'd push back on the manager's comment about your e-mail application not "fully" registering. What does that mean? Do they have some record of a failed attempt to register or your application stalling in their system right before clearing the final hurdle? Or is his comment a different way of saying we 'never" got any application for you whatsoever?

Beyond that, with little leverage I guess I'd contact Ally back and tell them that I believe I met the intent/spirit of the program by placing "new money" at Ally in October and not withdrawing it during the retention period. I would say I did not (like many others) immediately move my funds out on January 16th (you can send them a link to the hundreds of posts on this forum about the 1% bonus). Further, I'd point out that if Ally takes this unreasonable position, I would immediately move all funds out of Ally and close my accounts. I'd never do business with them again.

Good luck.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:49 am
by onourway
I'll take another tack.

Why are you automatically deleting email after 90 days? What purpose does that serve? Saving email costs nothing and creates an invaluable database for you to reference. I would change that policy immediately.

Are you backing up your computers? If so, simply restore the email from a backup. If you are not backing up, that is your second task for today. Set up a complete, automatic, off-site backup, and consider this an $850 lesson, which is honestly, a relatively cheap way to get it compared to the stuff I've seen people lose many time before.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:58 am
by GoldStar
I'd move on and take it as a lesson learned that you need to keep better records when you take advantage of bonus offers - don't auto-delete your emails simply because they are 90 days old - or - if you want to keep that policy then be sure to save the important ones off somewhere.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:38 am
by indexfundfan
On Nov 16, 2018, there was another email from Ally that let's you know how much bonus you can expect. Did you receive that? This email is not 90 days old yet.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:59 am
by RickBoglehead
indexfundfan wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:38 am
On Nov 16, 2018, there was another email from Ally that let's you know how much bonus you can expect. Did you receive that? This email is not 90 days old yet.
That email would have never come, which is why they didn't get the bonus.

MikeG62 wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:37 am
It always seemed to me that Ally would look for any opportunity to avoid paying the bonus based upon some technicality. This is why we placed the funds at Ally in October and did not have any activity in our accounts between those deposits and the posting of the bonuses (leaving the funds in the original no penalty CD's (one for my wife and one for me) even though we could have closed and re-opened new no penalty CD's when the rate increased by 10-15bps). Figured better safe than sorry.
We put the money in two individual accounts, then bought the No Penalty CDs. When the rates when up, we closed them, moving the funds into the individual accounts, then opened new CDs. We did this a total of 3 times, so we had four different sets of CDs during the promo period.

During the promo period, our joint checking and joint savings had several dozen transactions in total, but not a dime touched the two individual accounts or the CDs.

Ally paid the full bonus to each of us, because we followed the rules.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 12:27 pm
by adam61
Yes I followed every rule. Registered on promotion website first. Deposited $85k on 10/18 it never moved (still hasn't actually). Used primary e-mail from account. Got congrats e-mail but let it delete (STUPID ME), but they won't make any good faith effort. They said their system shows an attempt by that e-mail to register, but it wasn't on the final list.

Escalated to supervisor, got a no, escalated to manager, got a hard no. And that's where I'm at. No physical proof, but an obvious good faith effort on my part to meet every criteria, and didn't know anything was wrong until I was about to receive the $850 I expected.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 12:55 pm
by GoldStar
adam61 wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 12:27 pm
They said their system shows an attempt by that e-mail to register, but it wasn't on the final list.
Did they explain to you why it was an "attempt" but not "on the final list". This seems to indicate even if you had the email confirmation they would still deny you. What does "email didn't fully register" actually mean?
Sorry to hear of your trouble with this - as I recall they had some fine print which was open enough that it likely gets them off the hook.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:11 pm
by adam61
Basically like I started but never read the conditions and hit submit, but I remember the congrats page and e-mail so that's not true. They said they don't dig in any further it's either on the list and gets paid or isn't and doesn't, sorry no recourse bud.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:19 pm
by 02nz
Seems like the lesson is not to delete your emails. I don't bother deleting any email anymore - I'll never even approach the size limit in Gmail, and search is instant.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:19 pm
by caffeperfavore
Jags4186 wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 6:44 pm
You can file a CFPB complaint, write to attorney general, etc. but I’ve noticed banks in the last 1-2 years are not as quick to jump to complaints of these kinds.
Is the CFPB still acting on any of these complaints? Given the current administration's and the director's hostility to its very existence, I've heard that the agency is essentially sitting on things as higher ups are squashing investigations. [I'm not trying to get into the politics, I'm seriously asking if it's worth the trouble and if CFPB is still a resource here.]

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:31 pm
by Jags4186
caffeperfavore wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:19 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 6:44 pm
You can file a CFPB complaint, write to attorney general, etc. but I’ve noticed banks in the last 1-2 years are not as quick to jump to complaints of these kinds.
Is the CFPB still acting on any of these complaints? Given the current administration's and the director's hostility to its very existence, I've heard that the agency is essentially sitting on things as higher ups are squashing investigations. [I'm not trying to get into the politics, I'm seriously asking if it's worth the trouble and if CFPB is still a resource here.]
I can’t tell you what they are doing, I can just tell you that CFPB complaints don’t seem to be making the banks do anything. Sure, a bank will respond to a complaint, but instead of in the past “what can we do to get this right” type of response you’re now getting “our determination is X and we are standing by it”. There is nothing you can really do at that point.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:35 pm
by SlowMovingInvestor
I also normally take a pdf print of the final page when I've signed up for a bonus, as well as a pdf print of the offer (or if paper, keep the paper copy) etc.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:59 pm
by indexfundfan
RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:59 am
indexfundfan wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:38 am
On Nov 16, 2018, there was another email from Ally that let's you know how much bonus you can expect. Did you receive that? This email is not 90 days old yet.
That email would have never come, which is why they didn't get the bonus.
If it were me, I would have clarified with Ally on 11/16 whether I qualified for the bonus. If I didn't get a confirmation, I would have pulled out the money at that point.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:01 pm
by libralibra
post removed

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:10 pm
by ERISA Stone
I received an email in October when I enrolled and when I deposited the funds.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:06 pm
by adam61
Well lesson learned for better record retention, but also some good news. I called with my last courteous, but direct phone call and gave the case number and was immediately transferred to a manager who reiterated they were sorry, but they had to apply the bonus fairly to those who specifically followed the rules and because I had no documentation there was no further recourse.

I politely stated I understood their position, but as I felt it was bad faith since I followed every other possible rule and it was disappointing to me they got me on a "gotcha" I would follow up with a compliant to the OCC and CFPB and a certified letter to them to that effect. The manager placed me on hold for a good 10-15 minutes to "check something". She came back on and said they were researching in more detail and would call me back by EOD.

About 15 minutes later a very nice lady who said she was a VP of Customer Relations said since every single other step was followed and it was unclear in their database research why the e-mail didn't make the bonus list and was not paid I would have the $850 credited by EOD Friday. :D

So lesson learned for next time don't trust the system make a copy of everything, but big points to Ally for owning up that it was likely a glitch on their side and fixing it promptly. Thanks for the advice for now and the future Bogleheads!!

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:26 pm
by GoldStar
adam61 wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:06 pm
Well lesson learned for better record retention, but also some good news. I called with my last courteous, but direct phone call and gave the case number and was immediately transferred to a manager who reiterated they were sorry, but they had to apply the bonus fairly to those who specifically followed the rules and because I had no documentation there was no further recourse.

I politely stated I understood their position, but as I felt it was bad faith since I followed every other possible rule and it was disappointing to me they got me on a "gotcha" I would follow up with a compliant to the OCC and CFPB and a certified letter to them to that effect. The manager placed me on hold for a good 10-15 minutes to "check something". She came back on and said they were researching in more detail and would call me back by EOD.

About 15 minutes later a very nice lady who said she was a VP of Customer Relations said since every single other step was followed and it was unclear in their database research why the e-mail didn't make the bonus list and was not paid I would have the $850 credited by EOD Friday. :D

So lesson learned for next time don't trust the system make a copy of everything, but big points to Ally for owning up that it was likely a glitch on their side and fixing it promptly. Thanks for the advice for now and the future Bogleheads!!
Nice! Congrats! Good for Ally but unfortunate you had to threaten a complaint to get action.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please??? (Resolved Nice!!)

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:37 pm
by Katietsu
I believe I had the same glitch. My husband and aIf each registered and saw a screen congratulating us. Within a day or so, DH received a confirmation email. I did not. Since it was still during the sign up period, I went through the process again. This time I received an email. Had I not been involved with two registrations, I would probably be in the same situation as the OP.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:20 am
by caffeperfavore
Jags4186 wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:31 pm
caffeperfavore wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:19 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 6:44 pm
You can file a CFPB complaint, write to attorney general, etc. but I’ve noticed banks in the last 1-2 years are not as quick to jump to complaints of these kinds.
Is the CFPB still acting on any of these complaints? Given the current administration's and the director's hostility to its very existence, I've heard that the agency is essentially sitting on things as higher ups are squashing investigations. [I'm not trying to get into the politics, I'm seriously asking if it's worth the trouble and if CFPB is still a resource here.]
I can’t tell you what they are doing, I can just tell you that CFPB complaints don’t seem to be making the banks do anything. Sure, a bank will respond to a complaint, but instead of in the past “what can we do to get this right” type of response you’re now getting “our determination is X and we are standing by it”. There is nothing you can really do at that point.
Thanks, this is what I've been hearing as well, that banks and other financial institutions feel like they have free reign right now to do whatever they want, knowing that they're probably going to be able to get away with it. Now that I think about it, I would still file a complaint in the hopes that it will be put into a file that is eventually unearthed and used to take action against them at some point, just not in the next couple years.

Re: Ally 1% Bonus, Advice Please???

Posted: Wed Feb 20, 2019 7:28 pm
by gmc2017
GoldStar wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:26 pm
adam61 wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:06 pm
Well lesson learned for better record retention, but also some good news. I called with my last courteous, but direct phone call and gave the case number and was immediately transferred to a manager who reiterated they were sorry, but they had to apply the bonus fairly to those who specifically followed the rules and because I had no documentation there was no further recourse.

I politely stated I understood their position, but as I felt it was bad faith since I followed every other possible rule and it was disappointing to me they got me on a "gotcha" I would follow up with a compliant to the OCC and CFPB and a certified letter to them to that effect. The manager placed me on hold for a good 10-15 minutes to "check something". She came back on and said they were researching in more detail and would call me back by EOD.

About 15 minutes later a very nice lady who said she was a VP of Customer Relations said since every single other step was followed and it was unclear in their database research why the e-mail didn't make the bonus list and was not paid I would have the $850 credited by EOD Friday. :D

So lesson learned for next time don't trust the system make a copy of everything, but big points to Ally for owning up that it was likely a glitch on their side and fixing it promptly. Thanks for the advice for now and the future Bogleheads!!
Nice! Congrats! Good for Ally but unfortunate you had to threaten a complaint to get action.
I have the same problem as the OP. I've messaged Ally requesting the bonus but no reply yet.

What is the OCC?