$150 Checking Account Bonus at 1st Mariner Bank - Available Nationwide


Update: The checking account bonus appears to have expired. Also, for future reference, please note that readers have reported that 1st Mariner Bank will reject applications if one has 3 or more ChexSystems inquiries within the last 2 years.

1st Mariner Bank is offering a bonus of $150 for opening its Classic Direct Deposit Checking Account with $200 and activating a direct deposit within 90 days. This is listed on the bank's front page and in the bank's promotions page as of 10/7/2010.

There's also a $50 bonus for referring a friend who opens a checking account.

Here's the small print of the offer:

A service charge of $15.00 will be assessed if account is closed within 90 days. Classic Direct Deposit annual percentage yield of .50% is effective as of 7/28/10. Subject to change. One bonus per new account. Account must receive a direct deposit at least once every 90 days.

The Classic Direct Deposit Checking has no monthly fees, no minimum balance requirements and it offers free checks. There's also a bonus of up to $10 when you turn in your old checks.

I used the bank's online chat service to get more info on this promotion. According to the CSR, you can qualify for this bonus by applying online, and you don't need to be a resident of their local market area. Before applying, you might want to use the chat service. The CSR asked to record my name to ensure the bonus would be credited to the account once the direct deposit hits. I was told that the application process would not involve a hard credit inquiry which can ding your credit score. According to the CSR, "when opening the account online or over the phone we do perform a soft hit on your credit."

1st Mariner Bank's branches are located in several Maryland cities including Baltimore, Annapolis, Westminster, Bel Air, Columbia and Easton. There's also a branch in Shrewsbury, PA.

The bank is also having a CD special which I just reported on in this post. Also in that post I reviewed the financial health of 1st Mariner Bank. Its ratings are a little weak as it's working to comply with regulators demands to raise capital levels. The bank has been a FDIC member since 1962 (FDIC Certificate # 31286).

Credit for this find goes to FW member VerbalK who mentioned the promo in this FW thread.

Other Bank Bonuses

To find other bonus deals at other banks, please refer to the bank bonus page which has all of my recent bank bonus blog posts. There are also additional bonuses listed in the checking account deals forum.

Related Pages: checking account

  |     |   Comment #1
so I'm going to do it!  shal I give them your name that you referred me so you get $50?  what is your name?
  |     |   Comment #2
This was very simple to do and flowed very smoothly.  A window popped up with signature card to print out and sign and mail in.  There was no place to put who referred.  The only thing to be careful about that I could see is when funding the account it says only $50 is required to open the Classic DD Checking but to qualify for the $150 it says you must deposit $200 and it isn't clear if that is the funding amount minimum or any deposit.  Also, you get your choice of funding from a checking or savings account as well as credit card but the CSR wasn't sure if it would go through as a regular purchase or a cash advance.
  |     |   Comment #3
Does anybody know if incoming ACH is allowed as a substitute for direct deposit?
  |     |   Comment #4
it does say at the very bottom of the referall promo page that you need to have a direct deposit only once every 90 days instead of the normal monthly requirement if that helps.  I did not notice any information about using ACH instead of dd when I did the application.
  |     |   Comment #5
It also lets you fund $2500 from credit card which is an extra $50 for me.
  |     |   Comment #6
To  adityanm,

how? Even funding by credit card does not count for cash advance, but how you can get cashback for it? Any details?

  |     |   Comment #7
Besides, do they allow to use AMEX to do the initial funding?
  |     |   Comment #8
According to the CSR via chat ACH will not qualify and Visa/Mastercard are only accepted.
  |     |   Comment #9
To #6, by using a card like shwab visa that gives 2% rebate
  |     |   Comment #10
My chat with the bank:

A 1st Mariner representative will be with you in a moment.
You have been connected to Nortisha Thomas.
Nortisha Thomas: Hello, how are you?
Steven: fine thank you
Nortisha Thomas: That's wonderful! Once your direct deposit hits, the credit will be applied within 5 business days after.
Steven: ok thank you. what is the bank's definition of direct deposit?
Steven: are you still there?
Nortisha Thomas: A electronic deposit coming from a third party. It can not be from another account.
Steven: I dont understand. If a deposit is coming from a third party it will always be coming from another account
Nortisha Thomas: When it comes from a third party; for example your employer. The money does come from their account, but they then send the funds through a third party processing center, and it then comes to us.
Steven: So its ok if it comes through ACh?
Nortisha Thomas: No ACH's do not count. It has to be maybe from your employer or maybe social security, something like that.
Steven: What if they process through ACH?
Nortisha Thomas: It will come to the account but will not qualify as a direct deposit for the promotion.
Steven: ok thank you have a nice day
  |     |   Comment #11
$15 service charge for closing inside of 90 days is incorrect. Fee schedule says $30. Beware.
  |     |   Comment #12
If funding account by credit card, is there a fee charged by the credit card company? If so, that would likely be more than any cash back received.
  |     |   Comment #13
#12 it all depends on how the originating company processes it - as a purchase or a cash advance.  Many investment companies let you buy stock, bonds, fx, etc using a credit card and you must ask if it processes as a cash advance which will cost us money or as a purchase which gives you reward which is 2% in my case as well.
  |     |   Comment #14
I received an error message when attempting to open the account online, which directed me to call the bank.  The CR was friendly and tried to open the account for me over the phone, but she also got an error and said I had too many recent Chex System inquiries to open an account.
  |     |   Comment #15
Funding by credit card is most likely processed as "cash advance", then user would be hit by cash advance fee, and higher interest rate.  So be careful.
A 1st Mariner representative will be with you in a moment.
You have been connected to Kati Wood.
Kati Wood: Hi mike.
mike: Hi Kati
mike: I'm about to open a checking account online. What are my options for funding it?
Kati Wood: ACH using a routing number and account number or Credit/Debit Card with a Visa or Mastercard logo
mike: oh, do you accept funding by credit card?
mike: Is it going to be cash advance or purchase?
Kati Wood: “ If this is a credit card and not a debit card tied to your checking account, use of the credit card for funding is subject to the terms and conditions of the agreement entered into with your credit card issuer and may be processed as a cash advance by your credit card issuer resulting in a higher rate and/or additional fees. First Mariner Bank has no influence or control of the processing of your credit card transactions. If you have questions about the processing for this new account, please contact your credit card company directly.”
mike: ok, great.... that's all i wanted to know
mike: thank you.
Kati Wood: Your welcome. Have a nice day
  |     |   Comment #16
it's always determined by the originator so if 1st Mariner is passing the buck then I would say that for sure if anyone funds their 1st Mariner account with credit card, they will get a cash advance fee and no rewards unless their credit card company gives rewards on cash advance amounts.
  |     |   Comment #17
I called my credit card issuer (USBank) to make sure it was not a cash advance.  The rep said 1st Mariner put it in as a purchase and ensured me everything was ok.
  |     |   Comment #18
My Citi CC showed as a purchase too
  |     |   Comment #19
Bank of America said cash advance
  |     |   Comment #20
Chase United Airlines card posted as a purchase.
  |     |   Comment #21
be careful on Citi CC, they will code ANY transaction from banks as cash advance...
  |     |   Comment #22
I asked when you would get the $150 bonus and they said the Friday after your direct deposit is made.
  |     |   Comment #23
I opened my a/c and after a bit I opened a/c for my wife.  I get the $50-  I'm trying to figure out how to get the $50- also for my wife.  Anyone out there want to be helpful?   Hahaha.  The CSR was terrif.  They use CHEX (@#$%!!!).  I told CSR if we 2 are approved, we"ll buy CDs too.  Stay tuned.
  |     |   Comment #24
I'm looking to open an account and would like to help someone on top of me getting an extra $50 bucks with a referral. Let me know if anyone is interested. My email is [email protected]
  |     |   Comment #26
#24, I'll paypal you $25 as soon as they give me $50 referral for your opening checking account at 1st Mariner, anybody else?
  |     |   Comment #27

I am planning to open the account online today. Anybody who wants to split  the $50 referral can email me on

[email protected]
  |     |   Comment #28
Did anyone use PENFED Cash Rewards Visa for initial funding?  How did that work?  Was it qualified as a purchase?
  |     |   Comment #29
Also which credit bureau's report should I unfreeze?  Do they do a soft inquiry for id purposes?
  |     |   Comment #30
Let me know anybody wants the $25 referral  bonus. I will paypal $25 as soon as  they give me $50 for your checking account opening. Email me on [email protected] and I will send the invite rightway.

  |     |   Comment #31
I am planning to open the account online today. Anybody who wants to split  the $50 referral can email me on

[email protected]
  |     |   Comment #32
I'm ready to open an account also.  if anyone want the referral bonus, email me at [email protected]
  |     |   Comment #33
same here ready to open an account. email me for referral bonus. [email protected]
  |     |   Comment #34
I have got many responses.  So no longer in need of referral.  Thanks everyone!

-- update for comment #32
  |     |   Comment #35
what's about the $10 for returning your old checks?
  |     |   Comment #36
Do I need to input any Promotional Code in online application? Thanks a lot!
  |     |   Comment #37
I am planing open an account, anyone willing to share the bonus, please email me at [email protected]


  |     |   Comment #38
Can anybody confirm which of the following credit cards for initial funding qualifies as a purchase (not cash advance)? thanks.

chase freedom, chase united mileage plus card, Citi AAdvantage visa signature
  |     |   Comment #39
#38... I used a chase freedom card and it came through as a purchase (not a cash advance)
  |     |   Comment #40
going to open an account soon, any one want to split the referral?

[email protected]
  |     |   Comment #42
I plan on opening an account and would like to split the $50 with someone


[email protected]
  |     |   Comment #43
Anyone know of alternative means for the direct deposit besides a payroll deposit and I understand it only has to happen every three months but for how long?


[email protected]
  |     |   Comment #44
Anyone have problems enabling online banking? I get "Error Code: 90103" when trying to enroll.
  |     |   Comment #45
Don't waste you time if you have a large number of Chex Systems inquiries.  First Mariner will take your funds and deline your application.  At that point you have to wait to get your funds retrurned.  Be careful!!!!!
  |     |   Comment #46
I will be opening an account today.  If someone wants to split the referral bonus with me, post a comment with your email address.  Address your response to Art.


  |     |   Comment #47
Art or anyone else,

Email me at [email protected] if you'd like to split a referral bonus.
  |     |   Comment #49
Ugh, apparently I had too many inquiries. And yes, they withdrew the $200 I deposited. I asked to have a supervisor call me back about this. Apparently if you open the account by phone they'll do the check over the phone and deny you on the spot.
  |     |   Comment #50
I had 5 inquiries in the chexsystems in the last 6 months and got turned down.
  |     |   Comment #51
I have 0 inquiry in the last 6mo, but have 4 inquiries in the last 12 months and my application was rejected (even though they drafted $200 from my bank).  Now i have to wait for them to refund my money.  I'm so mad.
  |     |   Comment #52
Add me to the list of Chex systems inquiry denials.  It's pretty poor that their online application system doesn't deny the application during the application process, and not AFTER they withdraw your money to open the account. 
  |     |   Comment #53
They are running some rip off scheme on prospective customers, shame.
  |     |   Comment #54
I opened the accounts (CD and checking) on Friday morning by phone.  I probably have a prodigious number of Chex inquiries, but they haven't said anything so far.  I hope it all goes through ok.  I gave ACH and account numbers for the funding, but the money hasn't come out yet.  The Chex denials are pretty unfair.  I don't chase too many new account bonuses, but I have a lot of CDs in my "ladder".  If I open, say, 6-month and 12-month CDs at the same time at the same bank, they often run 2 Chex inquiries.
  |     |   Comment #55
After being told, via email, that I was denied due to Chex Systems inquiries, I asked it was possible to apply again. I received this response:

Thank you for contacting the customer service department at 1st Mariner Bank. You can apply again after you have been removed from Chex Systems. In order to find out if you have been removed from Chex Systems, you would have to contact them at 1-800-428-9623.
  |     |   Comment #56
I am another too-many-chex-inquiries victim waiting 7 business days for my initial funding to go back on my debit card. Online chat was helpful:

Kati Wood: We only allow 3 in a 2 year period

So keep that mind before you apply.
  |     |   Comment #57
I applied morning of the 7th and received email notification at 4:55 that day saying I was approved. They withdrew my funds on the 7th as well.  Today on the 15th I get a letter stating denial due to chexsystems too many inquiries!  I am so mad.  Now I have ANOTHER INQUIRY that results in NOTHING NADA except they owe me $200!
  |     |   Comment #58
It is a scam. They took out money from my credit card and now say they cannot open my account due to chexxsystem without telling what is adverse in my record. Is there any way to teach them a lesson?
  |     |   Comment #59

Are you guys their local customers who live in the neighborhood? This could be a reason if you get turned down.
  |     |   Comment #60
on what basis is it legal for them to take our money if they have yet to decide to open an account for us and then decide against us and apparantly do it often enough it is a habit and or standard policy and procedure for them?????  how can that be legal????
  |     |   Comment #61
How can this be legal (issuing account numbers, withdrawing 5k from a credit card for deposit into 2 accounts), requesting a signature card and then issuing a denial.  All while taking away access to your money for days on end? 

Did ANYONE get approved?  Because if this is set up to deny just about everyone who applied, then yes, we should do something about this.  We should issue a formal complaint with the Fed Reserve and FDIC.  They cannot just take adverse action against everyone, can they and blame chex?
  |     |   Comment #62
Did anyone get approved and stay approved? It is starting to look like a short-term deposit enhancement trick. No wonder this bank's numbers are poor.
  |     |   Comment #63
**** it, applied at 10/11, the money was cleared on 12/13 with my credit card. Today i got a denied letter which was print at 10/13. It is so ridiculous.
  |     |   Comment #64
I was approved on the 11th and my account is still open...
  |     |   Comment #65
My husband and I both applied last weekend.  We both received denial letters in the mail today.  The same thing as everyone else - they didn't like our Chex history.  The funny thing is my husband has only opened maybe 3 accounts in the last year.  The only upside is that it does not look like they withdrew any funds from our primary checking accounts.
  |     |   Comment #66
This bank is immoral, without ethics, crooks, cunning and the CSRs are idiots, to say the least.
  |     |   Comment #67
They never intended to pay the bouns either, but how do you prove intend in court of law?

I had only two inquiry in the last 12 month, one on Oct. 22 2009 and one in Nov. 2009 and that was a reason to turn me down, come on Bank you are all crooks, return my $400 ASAP, I will never ever deal with you again.
  |     |   Comment #68
I filed a complaint wiht the FDIC via https://www2.fdic.gov/starsmail/index.asp; please also file a complaint as they are probably more likely to take action if multiple people complain.
  |     |   Comment #69
I just filed two complaints aginst the bank via the link given by anonymous #68.
  |     |   Comment #70
I am ready to open an account.  Anyone willing to split the referall fee, please email me.  Thanks.
  |     |   Comment #71
I filed a complaint as well
  |     |   Comment #72
They assigned me an ACCOUNT NUMBER right away, but after one week I still got no further reply. No holding on my old checking account either. I bet they would send me a denial letter soon. This **** bank did such **** things. I'll file a claim against them as soon as I get the denial.
  |     |   Comment #73
Let the Fed Reserve know, too.  This is an outrage:  http://www.federalreserveconsumerhelp.gov/

Banks should not be able to take your money and then send you a denial after they have essentially received a "free" loan from the consumer.  Bad, bad, bad...
  |     |   Comment #74
Just received a decline letter, saying we have negative chex systems report. Agent from First Mariner advises if you have more than 3 inquires, you will be turned down.
  |     |   Comment #75
Spoke to a supervisor about the 'scam', he said they are protecting the bank from check kiting, hah! They are offering a promotion they don't intend to give to anyone. 3 inquires in 2 years on chex system, no more, and then maybe you will be approved.

Those of us with many CD's laddered, etc, will in no way have less than 3 in 2 years. They state they do not have to put a disclaimer on # of chex systems inquires.

What a waste of my time, and stamp to send in my signed completed application.

Very very dissapointing on how un-professional this institution is.

I would join a bandwagon to complain in a group to FDIC or any other consumer org.
  |     |   Comment #77
People, stop blaming yourself, this bank is running a cun artist game of bait and deny. It does not matter how many chexsystems inquiry you have, you will be denied. The bank is financing their short term debt with free money.

Complain to FDIC and the FEDs and will see what happens.
  |     |   Comment #78
No normal human being has less than 3 inquiries in 2 years in their chexsystems file, they know that and are playing with people emotions of free money, which they have never to fulfill or pay out. 

File complain, it is only recourse now.
  |     |   Comment #79
  |     |   Comment #80
Silly me opened my account and once approved, submitted a direct deposit form with my employer. So not only am I awaiting the return money i funded from my debit card, I'm also forced to wait until my direct deposit "fails" so my payroll check can be printed and then mailed. Frustrating!
  |     |   Comment #81
I just received a denial letter after 10 days. Arggg!

FDIC here I come with complaint......................
  |     |   Comment #82
I am one of the many who were denied the account after 5 day they withdrew money from my another bank account. Now how do I get money back, beside waiting for them to cut a check for me? Can I ACH money back, but I don't have an account with them as it was denied.

They shouldn't withdraw money then deny the account. They could have withdraw the money once they approve the account. I do think this is like a scam played by the bank.
  |     |   Comment #83
I filed a complaint online too. https://www.federalreserveconsumerhelp.gov/FormComplaint.cfm?source=jump

Please take time to file a complaint. I think there will be a better chance that they look into it when there are a lot of people who filed the complaint. It happened to us, but hopefully we can help to prevent it from happening to more people.
  |     |   Comment #84
  |     |   Comment #85
It's been 11 days since my money was talen out via ACH, no sign of the money being returned yet.

This bank is run by thieves. Calling does not help, online chat same old story you will get it back in 5-7 business days, liars!
  |     |   Comment #86

Please take a moment to file the complain


we don't want to be taken for granted.


  |     |   Comment #87
I started a thread in the banking forum with the below comment.  Ken, I urge you to start a new blog entry about 1st Mariner Bank's practices, noting the e-mail and complaint links.  People should understand what they are getting into before even thinking of starting an application with 1st Mariner:

Despite initial acceptance of application, accepting initial funding for the account, and receiving a welcome e-mail from 1st Mariner, ultimately getting denied if one has 3 or more ChexSystems inquiries within the last 2 years (with now a 4th inquiry from 1st Mariner) and having one's funds locked up at least 3 - 5 days before getting them back.


If you're as unhappy as I am with 1st Mariner Bank's policies, besides the Better Business Bureau and the appropriate regulatory agencies, please send your complaints to:

Pat Wellbrock, Director of Consumer Affairs, [email protected] Her department is responsible for receiving and processing all consumer complaints.

You can also file an online complaint with the FDIC here. The institution information is:

First Mariner Bank
1501 South Clinton Street
Baltimore,MD 21224
(443) 573-4800

From FWF poster depreshun on 10/13:

What a crappy sign up. My account was confirmed and $2500 pre-authorized on my Schwab card. Received a welcome e-mail. I attempted to set up online access since the account number was included in the confirmation. It kept rejecting. After a painful chat session with a CSR, they now tell me the account was denied due to "too many recent accounts at other financial institutions". I explained my concerns for their apparent process. Awaiting a call back from a manager. I will post the outcome as a data point, once I know.

[update] Well, no luck. Katie at 1st mariner still would not open the account. She said it gets denied if there have been more than 4 bank inquiries in the last 2 years. [edit from glxpass: per Mary Scheufele of 1st Mariner, it's actually 3 ChexSystems inquiries in the last 2 years; 1st Mariner would be the 4th inquiry.]  I, of course, respectfully asked her to have their process reviewed. The chexsystems pull is done before funding and approval. Other banks send off an "under review" notice then either open your account or deny it. Her reasoning for an initial approval and respective "account opening" was "we have paperwork that new customers must fill out and return within 30-days of account opening. We want to be sure customers have time to complete it before the 30-days is up". My response to that was "why would I want to waste my time filling out paperwork and mailing it only to discover that my "approved" account ended up being "denied"?". She told me she would pass along my concerns to her management.

In summary, if you're a person who takes advantage of bonuses for opening checking accounts or chases rates by opening RCAs, 1st Mariner will gladly accept your application, allowing funding your account (even with a credit card), and then will reject your application for excessive ChexSystems inquiries and return the funds to your credit card 3 - 5 days later, reversing any CashBack or rewards you might have gained.

The net result: no $150 bonus from 1st Mariner, your funds tied up with 1st Mariner before they are credited back to you, and one more ChexSystems inquiry that might affect your ability to open checking accounts at other banks or CUs who are sensitive to recent ChexSystems inquiries, yet who at least have the integrity to reject your application during the application process.

Although 1st Mariner might have done nothing illegal, complaints to the above-mentioned agencies are very appropriate, especially WRT to their holding on to people's funds 3 - 5 days and giving the initial impression that opening one's account was successful.
  |     |   Comment #88
I was actually approved, but they refuse to let me have access to my initial funds (already charged from my CC) for 7 business days.  My balance is still zero.  It's a scam every way you look at it.  They get a free loan whether you are approved on not.  I'm sure they'll come up for some reason why they don't pay you the $150, assuming you even get that far.
  |     |   Comment #89
To #88, FDIC is waiting for your complaint. Your case proves that this bank is outlaw. Don't let them push you around. At the end, probably you will receive the denial or some excuse form them to throw you out.
  |     |   Comment #90
Just read this:



  |     |   Comment #91
I received a letter in the mail saying the account cannot be opened. I had been approved and issued an account number when I opened the account online. Received a letter from one Kati Wood. Called her and was told the bank has a "policy" to deny applicants with over 3 enquires in the past TWO YEARS!. There is no law which prevents me from opening multiple accounts and closing them. As long as they are in good standing. And what I fear most is they requested my signature card which I mailed out promptly. I hope they do not share my personal details with scammers. This is the only bank where when you call, the default option is Spanish. English is option 2. Sounds like a bunch of privacy theives out on the prowl to gather your confidential details and then wreck havoc. Just Avoidddd this bank at all costs....
  |     |   Comment #92
EVERYONE, all of us have been scammed of our personal information, outside bank accounts or credit card number, and many of us, our original signatures which we submitted on the signature cards.

This bank obviously has a history of deceptive practices, and is in trouble, and appears perhaps could be some 'bandit' employees/management/ownership, that have found a way to collect this data. This data is worth alot to international theft rings, and I wouldn't put it past this group of collective thieves. Katie Wood is a popular lady, she writes the decline letters, she answers the phones....this is very worrisome to me.

And...send them the email addresses of all your friends and they will pay you $50! So they can lure in thousands more unsuspecting persons; at no cost to them, since they don't open any accounts!

It is in all of our best interests to get the Feds involved in looking into this....so please take the time to report to both the Federal Reserve, and the FDIC.
  |     |   Comment #94
This bank did a phishing schemes on all who applied. Most of your personal info may be sold to thieves and the international crime gangs, watch out.........
  |     |   Comment #95
They are giving me run around for my money when I ask when I will receive the initial deposit....

..." Nortisha Thomas:  Is there a number I can reach you later. I will have to contact the correct department to see when your credit is scheduled to hit your account. It usually takes 5-10 business days."...

It took, 12 days to reject me and I have to wait another two weeks from today to receive the initial deposit. Crooks
  |     |   Comment #96
I read the bank is under FDIC order to raise capital.  Maybe this is their way.  If they're seized, I'll have

a $5k tax loss.  They're not very up front with their ways.
  |     |   Comment #97
To #96. You are to kind when you said: "They're not very up front with their ways.", how about they knew that this is a fraud but did it anyway.

They are liars, crooks, thrives, scamers, @#@# and if they go under we lost our deposits for good. This is how they finance their cease and desist letter from FDIC
  |     |   Comment #98
Well said @97, they entered our opening deposits as income with no liabilities entries in their ledger,

Creative financing anyone! This is fraud on a grand scale. File complaint with FDIC at once.
  |     |   Comment #99
Seems this bank's shady practices could make for a nice TV expose. Anyone from Baltimore got caught up in this to push the right buttons?
  |     |   Comment #100
Thanx re the tv tip  I was tv producer for 30 years.  I'll look into this NOW!!  If you have letter from bank saying thanks for OPENING a/c, you have proof you have an a/c with them and are protected by FDIC. 

I'm notifying FDIC and OCC, etc.
  |     |   Comment #101
If you funded by credit card, complain to the credit card firm too.  I'n waiting to see if the bank is seized Friday.  Hold on to their letters stating "thank you for opening an account".  That's lewgal evidence you

can use to collect from FDIC.  I'm waiting to hear it all is striking the fan.
  |     |   Comment #102
Always remember:  If it sounds too good to be true, iy probsbly is.
Kevin Lynch
  |     |   Comment #103
On behalf of the bank, I want to apologize to those of you who applied for an account and were declined. This offer was meant for local customers in the Baltimore area and not intended for a national audience. We do a manual review of each account application and, as noted above, we do look at the number of inquiries from other financial institutions. Due to the overwhelming response from this and other blogs, we weren't able to manage the volume of funding refunds in a timely manner. We never intended to keep your funds any longer than necessary. We have taken steps to provide refunds to those of you who are still waiting for them. Thanks.  
  |     |   Comment #104
Kevin Lynch - I, for one, do not accept your apology. You should have included your stipulations in the offer and not told us that the application was approved, taken our funds, had us mail in signature cards and added another Chex inquiry on our files. You only now decided to apologize after seeing that we're all complaining to every applicable agency, and the last thing your scamming bank needs is more problems with the federal govt. Your bank's days are numbered and it's only a matter of time before being shut down.
  |     |   Comment #105
Are we to believe Kewvin Lynch is with the bank and sent the reply?  Or is someone toying with us?
  |     |   Comment #107
Has anyone had a good experience opening a/c with this bank?
  |     |   Comment #108
To drhorace - #107,, we all got scamed and defrauded.
  |     |   Comment #109
1st Mariner, a/k/a First Mariner Bank, has a history of FDIC cease and desist orders, some for discrimination against Blacks, Hispanics and women, see FDIC-07-285b and FDIC-08-358k. but also for inadequate financial and management practices. In particular, potential depositors might want to consider:


available for inspection in its entirety at:


In skeletal form:

FDIC-09-302b ordered 1st Mariner Bank to cease and desist from the following unsafe or unsound banking practices:

1.   inadequate level of capital protection for the kind and quality of assets held

2.   inadequate earnings to support operations,  maintain capital levels, and support loan      

      loss reserves

3.  operating with excessive levels of adversely classified loans or assets

4.  operating with inadequate management policies and practices

5.  operating with inadequate liquidity

and more.

For an exploration of what this means, a contemporary article may be found at:


One expert stated therein:"You have a bank with a number of problems, and they haven't
cured the problems that were raised in the informal proceedings," said Bert Ely, a banking
analyst with Ely & Co. "Now, you get the formal order, and that's another step toward
eventual takeover of the bank."

Kevin Lynch
  |     |   Comment #110
To JustMe #104- you are absolutely right, we should have had those stipulations in the offer. To Anonymous #105, yes, I am with the bank. My email is [email protected] if you or anyone else would like to communicate directly with me.
  |     |   Comment #112
A partial success story.

I opened an account online on 10/11 (joint account with my wife, myself as primary). $200 was taken from my external account the next day. I registered the account online... no problem. After reading all the negative posts, I called the bank and was told the account was in order. Over the next few days, there was no problem accessing the account online. In fact, a couple of transfers I made to the account were shown. I arranged for direct deposit of my social security in order to receive the $150. So far so good.... although I won't know for sure until after the first DD next month when I should be getting the bonus.

I asked the CSR if my wife could open an account, with me as joint holder, arrange for DD, and receive the bonus. I was told that would work. So on 10/12, I opened another account online, received an account number and arranged for ACH funding. BUT, her account was denied due to Chexsystems inquiries. Perhaps the inquiries from opening my account tripped the switch. Regarding the $200, it finally hit my account today, 8 business days after they took it.



  |     |   Comment #113
FLASH  FLASH  FLASH    My bank shows $5k returned by First Marine Bank,,   PRAISE tHE LORD!!!
  |     |   Comment #114
I wrote #112 above... I called SS the other day to arrange to DD to 1st Mariner account. Even though first payment won't be made until next month, 1st Mariner paid the $150 today!
  |     |   Comment #115
Since I was turned down for an account due to the ChexSystem report, I ordered a free report online from the company.  I was SHOCKED to see that I had FIVE (yes, 5) inquiries from 1st mariner in three days!  For a bank that only allows 3 in two years they sure shredded my report!  Everyone should order their free reports and review any inquiries from 1st Mariner.  I have contacted Mr. Lynch to request he personally contact ChexSystem to repair the damage.  I urge you all to do the same.  https://www.consumerdebit.com/consumerinfo/us/en/index.htm
  |     |   Comment #116
First Mariner removed $200 from my account to fund an account they declined and held my $200 for 17 days before they put it back.  It was actually out of my account longer than that which may have been my other bank.  Now to check to see what kind of damage they did my credit records.
  |     |   Comment #117
I wonder if the title could be changed. It seemed they turned down opening request from non-MD residents much more often than any place else. I'll remember this bank, IN A BAD WAY.
  |     |   Comment #118
I took the time to post a review of this bank.  The review cross-posted to this web site's forum.  Others (well, one other specifically) believes that I was complaining frivilously and simply didn't do my homework and ask the right questions with the bank prior to posting my inappropriate review.  Please feel free to share a summary of your experience with the bank either as a review or as a comment on this thread here:


  |     |   Comment #119
Do people just come here for one-shot complaint and go away?

I would like to be a regular poster here and contribute positively and regularly in savings accounts and reward checking accounts.
Special 18-Month CD at 1st Mariner Bank in MD - Available Nationwide

1st Mariner Bank is offering a special 2.00% APY 18-month CD and IRA CD. Minimum deposit is $500. This is listed on the bank's front page and in the bank's promotions page as of 10/7/2010.

I used the bank's online chat service to get more info on this special. According to the CSR, the CD can be opened by phone even if you don't live in their market area. The CD can be funded by an ACH transfer from your existing bank. The CD rate should lock at the time the...

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2.30% 18-Month CD at 1st Mariner Bank in Maryland

1st Mariner Bank is offering a 2.30% APY 18-month CD special. Minimum deposit is $500, and the maximum is $100,000. The special is listed on the bank's front page as of 2/23/2010, and it can be opened by phone or at one of the bank's branches. I was told by the CSR that they can accept out-of-state deposits, and the CD can be funded via an ACH transfer from an existing checking or savings account. According to the CSR, the special rate is good at least through 2/24/2010. Rates are...

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2.30% 18-Month CD at 1st Mariner Bank in Maryland - Local Only
1st Mariner Bank is having a CD special at its branches that runs through 11/29/2009. It's an 18-month CD with a 2.30% APY. Minimum deposit is $500. This special doesn't seem to be listed at the bank's website. A reader commented about receiving email from the bank on this offer, and I just received additional info from a CSR using the bank's chat service.

It's only available at the bank's branches which are located in several Maryland cities including Baltimore, Annapolis, Westminster, Bel Air, Columbia and Easton. There's also a branch...

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3.75% 10-Month Online Hybrid CD at 1st Mariner Bank - $50K Max
Update 2/18/09: The CD rate has fallen to 3.00% APY.

1st Mariner Bank continues to offer a Hybrid Savings/CD Account. The yield has dropped since I last reported on this in July 2008, but it's still very competitive. The current rate is 3.75% APY for a term of 10 months. Minimum initial deposit is $100, and the maximum is $50,000. It requires a checking account, and it requires that you set up automatic monthly transfers from the checking into the Hybrid CD. The transfers must be at least $25, but cannot...

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4.25% 10-Month Online Hybrid CD at 1st Mariner Bank - $25K Max
1st Mariner Bank is offering a Hybrid Savings/CD Account with a yield of 4.25% APY and a term of 10 months. The minimum initial deposit is $100, and the maximum is $25,000. It requires a checking account, and that you set up automatically monthly transfers from the checking into the Hybrid CD. The transfers must be at least $25, but cannot be more than $500 (according to the CSR).

The monthly automatic transfers are what makes this a hybrid of a CD and savings account. All other features are the same...

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