- Posts: 1
- Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2011 12:57 pm
- Location: SoCal
MAJOR PROBLEMS WITH PAYPOWER CARD. I have an ONLY1 card that I have used for the past year without any problems (except for Quicken download with doesn't work). I was recently contacted by BLACKHAWK NETWORK to transition over to a new PAYPOWER, which I was told was the same card, same company (METABANK/BLACKHAWK), but had a lower reload fee (acutally the monthly fee is HIGHER) and was replacing ONLY1. They said it was no different, only internally, but a "smoother process" and I was instructed to go online to order a card in my name which would be mailed to me, which I did. It took almost a month to get the card but I finally got it and activated the card as instructed.
IT HAS BEEN A NIGHTMARE EVER SINCE!! Every time I go to use the PAYPOWER, even though I have a credit balance, my purchases have been declined even though I have available credit. This has happened TWICE in the past week causing me much embarassment, loss of use of my funds, loss of sale price opportunity, several round trips to Loehmann's, and hours of phone calls and research trying to resolve the issue. The first incident, , I had available credit on my card ($58.40) which was confirmed via email alerts as well as confirming with an agent over the telephone when I called in to obtain routing numbers for my tax refund direct deposit. There were also problems with my log-in at the website which the agent said were internal, which he resolved and reset for me. Later that same day, when I went to make the purchase for which I had intentionally loaded my PAYPOWER, the transaction was declined, even though I had more than enough verified funds on the card to cover the purchase. When I called the number on the card at the point of sale to resolve the issue, I waited on hold for over 40 minutes, holding up the cash register line and draining my cell phone battery. When I finally got a live representative on the line, I asked to speak with a supervisor and was put on hold again for another eternity. Eventually, my call was "elevated" to someone who barely understood English, who could do nothing more than read me a scripted apology, but could not take any other action ("didn;t have tools") to resolve the matter or clear the hold. I was told that my card was "on hold" status" and that there was no one I could speak to and that "the corporate office was closed and someone from corporate would call me first thing tomorrow morning."
Of course, no one contacted me the next morning so I spent hours calling the number on the card only to get placed on hold for 40 minute stretches and then be disconnected, or finally get a supervisor who could do nothing more but refer me back to the website for a number to call (which is the same number on the card which I had been speaking) or advising me to "write a letter". When pressing further, I was told by the representative at number on the PAYPOWER card (888-633-9432) that they are actually "GIFT CARD MALL.COM" and that they cannot resolve any problems. I tried contacting Chad Becker at BLACKHAWK on his direct dial which I had on file for my previous ONLY1/Quicken download problem, left several messages for him which were never returned, and when pressing O in the voicemail options as instructed, my call was mysteriously routed to SAFEWAY, of all places, which is somehow mysteriously affiliated with BLACKHAWK/METABANK. While again on hold over there (apparently the entire SAFEWAY/BLACKHAWK/PAYPOWER staff all go to lunch simultaneously and there is absoultely NO ONE in the entire organization(s) available to take a telephone call during lunch hour Central Time.....my other line rang and surpise...it was BLACKHAWK fraud division randomly calling me FOR MY OWN SECURITY because I had several CREDITS from Staples on my card!!! Well, apparently, I had returned office supplies to Staples ((my new laser printer doesn't use the same ink, etc. and a few other token items) and was given the choice of Staples gift card, cash or a credit/debit card refund, and I opted for a credit/debit card refund which was credited to my PAYPOWER card only because I thought it would be more convenient. Mind you, the refund was nominal amount (about 50 bucks), but for some reason triggered a full blown PAYPOWER FRAUD INVESTIGATION ALERT.
Apparently, John Grey, Fraud Risk for BLACKHAWK, reviews all accounts and my account was sitting in the pile on his desk to review and was temporarily suspended because of the returns I had CREDITED to my card from Staples, "FOR MY OWN SECURITY". Now mind you, these were CREDITS not DEBITS to my account and they were NOMINAL...transactions less than $100...C'mon. John aplogised, miraculously lifted the hold within seconds, assured me this wouldn't happen again and I was good to go. OR so I thought.....I asked for his phone number or way to contact him again if I had any further problems, but was told there was no way to contact him or anyone else except to call the 888-633-9432 call center number....
Well, the next day I had one more Staples return (a couple file boxes-wrong size)....credited to my PAYPOWER...no problem.....went to use the card last night....Available Balance $35.40, Purchase transaction for $29.22 DECLINED!!!! Tried calling the number on the card, same deal as before. Long holds, limited English, nothing anyone can do. Apology. "No tools". Was told someone would call me first thing this morning. Of course, no call. They told me to call "corporate" on Saturday between 8 and 2 Central Time. Of course, I call and am placed on long holds, (27 minutes, disconnect, another 27 minutes) finally speak to several "supervisors" who tell me my card is blocked for at least 1 -2 business days; they "don't have the tools" to unblock; "corporate is closed" on weekends and holidays (Monday is a holiday); they could do nothing else but give me a "ticket number" and read me a scripted apology. Again, I am told there is no telephone number for "corporate", all incidents are "routed" to corporate "risk management team" with a "ticket number", ."risk management" doesn't have a telephone. Of course, no one ever has a last name or ID number; when pressed, I am told by Lisa, the "lead Supervisor" that she is the only Lisa in the entire company, and that the "company" (this time) is SERVICE CENTER SOLUTIONS, a third party provider for BLACKHAWK.
I want to take advantage of sale prices this holiday weekend (President Day) and am now told it will be at least 1-2 days AFTER TUESDAY of next week, long after the sales are over, before I will hear back from anyone to unblock my account. THIS IS THE SECOND TIME THIS WEEK THIS HAS HAPPENED. I WANT MY MONEY NOW.
UNBELIEVABLE.....I just rececived a call from Arlene in "Risk Management" demanding that I drop everything, pull out all my receipts for my Staples returns, including receipts for my original purchases from Staples (not with Paypower), and fax them to her. She was extremely argmentative, trying to pick a fight, very combative, grilling me, firing off questions and cutting me off mid-sentence while I was trying to answer her. When I requested to speak with her supervisor, there was a long debate over "manager" versus "supervisor" who was not available anyway. When I asked to speak to my previous contact at Rick Management, John Grey, I was told he was only an "analyst who reports to a Manager". After almost an hour, and only after I got assurances from her that she "may" be able to "review the fax" and "possibly" release the block if gather all the documents and that she "had the authority to release the block", if I got the fax to her right now, I reluctlantly agreed to drop everything I was doing (writing this post) to send her the documents.......when suddenly, without doing anything, miraculously, the block was lifted. She apologized perfusely, telling me "this was all done for my own security", there should be no problem with my card, the available balance is $35.40, any other debit card would have done the same thing, etc. But when I tried to get answers from her to figure out what had happened, she continued to argue, telling me that "she apologized", "didn't have the tools", (frequent PAYPOWER buzz-lines), this was outside her job area and that I would have to call 888-633-9432 for any other questions and she was ending the call.
I HAVE HAD NOTHING BUT PROBLEMS WITH PAYPOWER/BLACKHAWK AND AFTER THIS LAST TRANSACTION I WILL FIND A NEW DEBIT CARD COMPANY TO USE. Bottomline, buyer beware: 1) they held my available funds for no reason two times in one weekt; 2) have caused me to miss sale opportunities I was planning on (thereby costing me money) 3) caused me great embarrassment and credibility at my favorite retail store 4) cost me time and gas ($$$) making 2 wasted trips to Loehmann's 5) caused me a great deal of time and aggravation dealing with their "Risk Management" people as if I were some kind of criminal ("For my Own Security") 6) wasted hours and hours trying to get through to anyone at 888-633-9432 to resolve the problems. 6) Online "log-in" is almost always down, referring me to call Customer Service. I was going to use PAYOWER to direct deposit my tax return this year, but not any more.
ANOTHER DISSATISFIED CUSTOMER