Saturday, June 23, 2007

A payment a day keeps the bill collectors away

Please Kali. Talk to your lost children. Speak to them. In words of one syllable. Maketh with the sign language. Draw pictures if you have to. Send visions. Smoke signals. Carrier pigeons. Pull out Vicki Lawrence and play "Win, Lose or Draw." But get this point across. If you want to pay your car bill, you need to provide the right account number. And no, yelling at me won't help.

There must be some magical point in the learning curve of life where the average adult manages to learn enough to find a job, drive a car and remember that the green paper things are "money." Anything else just slips past - like water over the edge of a flat earth.

This phenomenon seems to especially affect people who shop at Wal-Mart. Maybe there is something in that Sam's Cola after all!

At any rate ...

This woman comes up and wants to do a MoneyGram Express Payment for her car payment. Fine.

I do all the typing and I can't send it. Wrong receive code. "Ma'am - are you sure this is the code?"

"I'm sure. They called me this morning to tell me that I have to make a payment or they are going to start reposession." Great.

So I try to look up the name of the company. She's claiming it is GMAC, located in Kent, Wisconsin. I should have known. I should have known.

"Ma'am, I've got ten different GMACs - depending on which particular one you used too finance the car. None of them are in Wisconsin. And this one here is just one number different than the code you gave me. Are you sure it isn't one of these?"

"No. She gave me the code this morning. And it is in Wisconsin. I know. I'm going to call."

"That's fine ma'am." She calls. Sure enough. It is the code I told her. And she wants the GMAC in Huntington, West Virginia. Wisconsin, West Virginia. It all starts with W. So does wine.

I bet the crazy woman wrote the stuff down when they woke her up this morning threatening to repossess her truck. That must have been some kind of bender if she can't even write straight.

So I try again. And this time, it won't let me send because the account number is wrong.

"Ma'am, are you sure this account number is right?"

"Yes. I copied it down right. Don't you know how to work that thing?" Okay. All right. That is not helping. And you are officially not on my good side now.

"Ma'am, I can't send it if the account number isn't correct. You do want the money to go toward YOUR car payment don't you?" That settles her down. And she calls again.

This time, she has to give personal information to get her account number - so they know who she is. And they REALLY want to talk to her. I hear her arguing with the GMAC person. Then they really tie into it over how much she is going to send.

Apparently, $100 is NOT what they told her to send to avoid repossession. "Well, I told them I could only send $100." Pause. "Well, it's going to have to be enough. I don't have any more." Pause. "Why are you being like this?" Pause. "Well, I don't have it." Pause. "That's not really any of your business." Pause. "Can you just give me my account number please." Pause. "I'll try to send more tomorrow." Pause. "Yeah, you too buddy."

Sure enough. She had the account number wrong. The third time was the charm though and her payment went through fine.

What was she rolling you ask? A 2006 Ford F-150. Hardly an economy car.


The Sassy Editorialist said...

How utterly frustrating that must have been. I hate when people blame me for their mistakes.

snood said...

Nothing like not being able to make your payment on your gas guzzling pickem up truck.

DolfanDad said...

I think this is the perfect irony! She can only pay $100 payment on a car that probably costs $350/month with a lease, and the gas probably costs $60 per fill. She should have said "$100 is all I can send! I just filled up yesterday and that costs $70! What do you want me to do, walk!?" That would have been priceless.

X_LA_Native said...

I just filled up yesterday and that costs $70! What do you want me to do, walk!?
That's about the level of logic I'd expect...LOL!

Sanne said...

I am just really puzzled about the "none of your buisiness" remark. I used to do collections and we asked people why they did not pay. They would come with the "It's personal" excuse. My stock reply.
"Well, ma'am. It IS my buisiness. You are not paying me my money as agreed in the contract you signed. Now I want to help you and come to an agreement but if you are not being honest with me I am going to have to take further steps. And you are not going to like that."
it is like talking to children sometimes. I once had a huge shouting competition with some guy who did not pay his bills because he hired a caravan for a 3 week vacation. And he was screaming at me where I got the nerve to tell him that he should not have done that. Well it is my money you are spending there. PAY YOUR BILLS.
Ugh, people.

Anonymous said...

I worked customer service for Wally World, and I found out once from Moneygram that you can send the person's payment to any of those GMAC recieve codes---it's all really the same place, just different locations. As long as you have the right account number, the payment will go through. Same goes for all other Moneygram bill payments..........

Jina said...

That is so funny. I had this happen to me yesterday!

The lady kept telling me she had sent MoneyGrams before, and I kept telling her that I understand that, and her information is already in the system (Oh so it MUST be true, imagine that...) I kept getting an error code saying that the account number was an invalid length for that company. She kept retorting with, "I just called them and that's what they gave me." We went rounds on this for almost ten minutes. I finally got her to understand that I cannot just make the payment POST to this magical account number she gave me, and even if I could it would do nothing for HER account. She finally called again, and d'oh, she forgot the FIRST number.....

Anonymous said...

This lady will be first in line when the IQ cleansing brigade lands their ships on Earth.

ashley said...

my best friend works at that collection agency. it would be amazingly awesome if she was the one the lady was talking to.