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Old 04-07-2021, 04:26 PM   #34216
4691mls
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On March 25th I paid several bills online out of my checking account, including the electric power bill which was due by April 1st. I got a confirmation number for that payment which I wrote down.

Today (April 7th) I was balancing my checkbook and discovered that the power company payment had never cleared. I went online to my power company account and it was showing as past due.

I called the power company's customer service and found out that my confirmation number is useless. The woman didn't even want it. All she would do was take my payment over the phone.

I asked how am I supposed to know if any of my future payments go through, given that apparently the confirmation number means nothing? She said I can go online to my account the next day and see if it still shows a balance. Why should I have to do this ??

And to top it off, she kept accusing me of yelling. I was not yelling. I live in an apartment building with thin walls and I don't want my neighbors knowing my business. I was speaking firmly but politely, not using any foul language or anything like that.

So now I guess every month I will have to log into my power company account TWICE - once to pay my bill, and a second time a couple days later to make sure the payment actually went through.
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Old 04-07-2021, 04:53 PM   #34217
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Originally Posted by 4691mls View Post
On March 25th I paid several bills online out of my checking account, including the electric power bill which was due by April 1st. I got a confirmation number for that payment which I wrote down.

Today (April 7th) I was balancing my checkbook and discovered that the power company payment had never cleared. I went online to my power company account and it was showing as past due.

I called the power company's customer service and found out that my confirmation number is useless. The woman didn't even want it. All she would do was take my payment over the phone.

I asked how am I supposed to know if any of my future payments go through, given that apparently the confirmation number means nothing? She said I can go online to my account the next day and see if it still shows a balance. Why should I have to do this ??

And to top it off, she kept accusing me of yelling. I was not yelling. I live in an apartment building with thin walls and I don't want my neighbors knowing my business. I was speaking firmly but politely, not using any foul language or anything like that.

So now I guess every month I will have to log into my power company account TWICE - once to pay my bill, and a second time a couple days later to make sure the payment actually went through.
Just curious, but are you using your banks bill pay or the electric companies site to pay?

It does seem very strange that a confirmation number is no help.
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Old 04-07-2021, 06:19 PM   #34218
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So now I guess every month I will have to log into my power company account TWICE - once to pay my bill, and a second time a couple days later to make sure the payment actually went through.
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Just curious, but are you using your banks bill pay or the electric companies site to pay?

It does seem very strange that a confirmation number is no help.
The the "Log on to my power company account twice" comment seems to suggest it was the power company's own system, not the banks. If so, this is really outrageous, and you should do more than vent and rant here. If a customer service manager can't help you, then complain to your board of public utilities and anyone else who'll listen. Media consumer advocates, perhaps?

If it was in fact the bank's system, then of course it's not the power companies fault, any more than a check lost in the mail would be their fault, and the bank's confirmation number wouldn't mean anything to them obviously.

However the attitude of the rep you spoke to is a problem in either case. I find from experience that CSRs who are so concerned with telling customers how THEY want to be treated rather than being concerned about how they are treating the customer (you know, the person who it is their job to treat respectfully and serve?) are often the most incompetent and ill-informed CSRs. They seem to be so busying looking for ways to demand respect from you, that they have no intellectual capacity left for learning their company policies and procedures, nor do they think being informed and accurate in such matters is of any concern, compared to the task of making sure they themselves are not disrespected. So you might want to simply call back during a a different shift and speak to another rep or a manager who actually seems to care about serving customers. I would not be surprised if you found out that there IS a way to verify payments with their confirmation number after all.

ApK

Last edited by ApK; 04-08-2021 at 10:38 AM.
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Old 04-07-2021, 07:29 PM   #34219
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I always write the confirmation number in my bank book, figuring that it'd be useful in an instance like this. Otherwise why do they give it? I'd ask for a manager, sounds like the person answering the phone didn't care to help you much.
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Old 04-08-2021, 02:27 AM   #34220
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I always write the confirmation number in my bank book, figuring that it'd be useful in an instance like this. Otherwise why do they give it? I'd ask for a manager, sounds like the person answering the phone didn't care to help you much.
I do this, too. In my case, when I pay my credit card bill I write the payment date and confirmation number on the bill. They also offer an email confirmation, which I always ask for.
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Old 04-08-2021, 06:57 AM   #34221
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I always write the confirmation number in my bank book, figuring that it'd be useful in an instance like this. Otherwise why do they give it? I'd ask for a manager, sounds like the person answering the phone didn't care to help you much.
I used to take screen captures, but stopped. My bank has a history of the transactions going back a year.

I guess it is possible that something could go wrong and my bank may screw up, but I get cross checks (account activity and daily balances emails) that I thought the confirmation numbers were redundant.
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Old 04-08-2021, 07:07 AM   #34222
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...

If it was in fact the bank's system, then of course it's not the power companies fault, any more than a check lost in the mail would be their fault, and the bank's confirmation number wouldn't mean anything to them obviously.

...
ApK
Wouldn't it depend on where "it got lost in the mail"? If it got "lost in the mail" once the power company received the mail, I would say it is the power companies fault (although hard to prove for regular mail).
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Old 04-08-2021, 09:53 AM   #34223
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Wouldn't it depend on where "it got lost in the mail"? If it got "lost in the mail" once the power company received the mail, I would say it is the power companies fault (although hard to prove for regular mail).
Dude. (?!)

I think it's well understood, particularly in context, what "lost in the mail" means.

Did you honestly think I meant, or that readers would assume I meant, that "lost in the mail" referred to the loss or mishandling by the recipient of an item that had previously been delivered by mail?!
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Old 04-08-2021, 10:34 AM   #34224
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It was the power company's online payment system, which I have been using for a long time with no problem until now.

I hate making phone calls and I am not someone who thinks quickly enough in such a situation. I found the power company also has a place on their website where you can email customer service so I will probably try following up that way. At least they won't be able to accuse me of shouting at them....
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Old 04-08-2021, 11:07 AM   #34225
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Dude. (?!)

I think it's well understood, particularly in context, what "lost in the mail" means.

Did you honestly think I meant, or that readers would assume I meant, that "lost in the mail" referred to the loss or mishandling by the recipient of an item that had previously been delivered by mail?!
bro!! Since they aren't honoring a confirmation number, I would also assume they are the type of company that would use an excuse like "it must have got lost in the mail" even it was still sitting in their mail room, it fell behind a cabinet in their mail room, they just threw it out, ...
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Old 04-08-2021, 11:11 AM   #34226
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It was the power company's online payment system, which I have been using for a long time with no problem until now.

...
Thank you for the clarification.

Makes you think about stuff like this when companies say "would you like a confirmation number?".

Reminds me of the Seinfeld skit about car reservations:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4T2GmGSNvaM
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Old 04-08-2021, 11:20 AM   #34227
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bro!! Since they aren't honoring a confirmation number, I would also assume they are the type of company that would use an excuse like "it must have got lost in the mail" even it was still sitting in their mail room, it fell behind a cabinet in their mail room, they just threw it out, ...

Indeed! But I'M not them, nor am I that type, and it was MY comment you challenged, not theirs!

Note, I would only harp on you for this in the Vent and Rant thread...cuz I'm allowed to, you know...vent and rant. :-)
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Old 04-08-2021, 11:25 AM   #34228
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Reminds me of the Seinfeld skit about car reservations:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4T2GmGSNvaM
Funny cuz it's true. The rep's look at the end was immensely satisfying.
Though I think my favorite part was "I hate everybody, why would I like him?"

Last edited by ApK; 04-08-2021 at 11:28 AM.
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Old 04-08-2021, 05:59 PM   #34229
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Indeed! But I'M not them, nor am I that type, and it was MY comment you challenged, not theirs!

Note, I would only harp on you for this in the Vent and Rant thread...cuz I'm allowed to, you know...vent and rant. :-)
You are correct, I shouldn't have quoted you. I ment to challenge the power company, not your statement.
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