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How Do You File a Complaint Against a Bank?

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Let's face it, banking institutions are not infallible. If you run into a major banking dispute that cannot be resolved by recourse to the top levels of management at your branch, you may consider filing a compliant with the appropriate Federal Reserve Board. Bank complaints can be handled both by the Fair Housing Act and by the HUD -- Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Make sure to document all relevant information about your banking complaint claim in your letter to the Federal Reserve. Include contact information for yourself, your banking account information, if it relates to your complaint, and contact and address information for your branch. In addition, create a dossier of the officials at the bank who handled (or perhaps, in your opinion, "mishandled") your case.

Finally, of course, you will need to write up the nature of your complaint -- be as specific as possible here. Provide dates, names, amounts, and applicable laws or regulations so that the Federal Reserve Board officer who investigates your banking claim will be able to quickly move forward.

The Federal Reserve may then investigate your complaint and ask you for additional or supplemental information to verify your letter. The Federal Reserve Board will likely get back to you within one or two months -- although it can take 60 plus days to resolve serious banking problems, particularly if the institution is unwilling to admit blame or if banking associates contest complaint information or statistics.

If a banking disagreement cannot be resolved via a Federal Reserve investigation, or if it does get resolved, but not in your favor, you may opt for legal action. Be aware that fighting a major banking company in court can be costly and can lead to drawn out litigation fees.

Balance your desire to rectify your banking situation against your financial wherewithal, it may not be worth your time or money to pursue the matter to court. Furthermore, your banking branch may be willing to meet you half way under some circumstances and provide you premium protections or other advanced services to compensate for whatever caused you to file the banking complaint in the first place.

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