Date Received: 2018-01-15T00:00:00
Product: Credit card debt
Issue: Took or threatened to take negative or legal action
Consumer Consent Provided to Share Complaint: Consent provided
Consumer Complaint: I just received a refund check from CITI for the fraudulent fees they charged on protection plans. I was unaware of such a refund and did an internet search to see if this was a joke. As I find out it was not a joke, I became very infuriated. One because they had stolen from me without my knowledge. Two, because they refused to provide assistance or protection when I needed it and here they were already charging me for it.
Back in early 2008, I got caught up in the housing bust, lost my job, and hand two large medical bills. I had always paid my bills and had a very good credit rating. Seeing I was heading into a financial crisis, and before it hit, I contacted all my creditors. I explained the situation and all of them were very helpful. They made arrangements to ease the financial stress until I got back on my feet. Within two years, I paid all my creditors off. But there was one exception, CITI.
CITI from the start would not provide any assistance or adjustments in payment terms. While trying to work a new payment plan out, I kept my payments current with CITI. Even though I was current on payments, most of the time their representatives were very rude and treated me as a criminal. All I was asking was to reduce my payments temporarily. And here they had me paying for a protection program without my knowledge and they could have used this to help me. I made several calls and wrote letters with no results. I made one final desperate call and talked to a lady that was actually very nice. She explained that CITI will not provide assistance as long as I was current on payments. She said I must be behind three payments before assistance can be applied for. I thought that to be unwise and even talked to a supervisor. The supervisor backed her up and said to stop making payments. Then after the third missed payment, call back and apply for assistance. Reluctantly I stopped making payments. Then after the third payment was missed, I called and all XXXX broke loss. To them, I became a low life and I should pay my debt in full all at once. Absolutely no assistance was to be provided, dont even apply.
Over the next several weeks, I tried to work things out with CITI. I even told them I would sign a contract where they would be the first debt paid off after the house sells. I thought I was getting somewhere with them until I received a debt collection letter from a North Carolina collection agency, XXXX XXXX XXXX ( XXXX XXXX XXXX ). I actually had a phone conversation with CITI the day before the collection letter was received. I contacted XXXX XXXX XXXX via letter letting them know I was working directly with CITI on the debt dispute and had no knowledge of them being hired by CITI on this matter. I called CITI and they said nothing about handing my debt over to a collector. XXXX XXXX XXXX kept hounding me so I asked them to send me proof they were hired by CITI to collect this debt. XXXX XXXX XXXX never provided any document showing they were hired by CITI to collect. While still working directly with CITI and thinking we were finally working out a repayment plan, I am served a notice that XXXX XXXX XXXX filed a lawsuit against me for the debt. What the heck! I contacted CITI immediately about the XXXX XXXX XXXX lawsuit and at first, they had no knowledge of it. But then came back and said, oh yes, XXXX XXXX XXXX is collecting on the debt and all correspondence must go through them. This was the first time that proof was given that XXXX XXXX XXXX was hired to collect on the debt. I was led on by CITI as if things were going to be worked out while XXXX XXXX XXXX was filling the lawsuit. And here again, even though I had not approved of the protection program, CITI was charging me for the protection program and not using it to protect me. What creeps!
There is a lot more to this story but in summary, I can only imagine CITIs and XXXX XXXX XXXX reasoning for approaching my debt in this manor was they did not believe me and felt they could get much more out of me. By the time things came to a peak between us, their fees, penalties, and jacked up interest rate had almost doubled the debt. I did pay them off but not after a lot of XXXX from them. Because of them and as XXXX XXXX XXXX threatened it would, my credit rating remained horribly low for another four years. All this cost me and my family a lot of undue stress and financial XXXX aches for XXXX years total. It did not have to be this way. No other creditor was like this and they were all paid off as promised. At the beginning I was honest and up front. I contacted them well before my financial crises hit rock bottom. But unlike all the other creditors, they want to strong arm me. I think CITI and XXXX XXXX XXXX should be penalized for such underhanded and treacherous treatment as I am sure I am not the only one that was treated this way.
Company: CITIBANK, N.A.
State/Zip: KY 411XX
Company Response to Complaint: Closed with explanation
Was Company Response Timely: Yes
Did Consumer Dispute Company Response: N/A
Complaint ID: 2781571
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