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Valor Credit Union - Add On Cd - Will Allow One Add On Deposit If You Sign Release Form

Francis1
Francis1   |     |   13 posts since 2014

In December, Valor credit union stopped allowing add on deposits to their 7 year add on cd. A lot of us complained. Today I received notice there was a certified letter from Valor for me to pick up at the post office. From https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/...5259&p2810970#p2810970 it appears Valor will allow one add on deposit, 25k maximum, before March. And you must sign a release form to not pursue further action against them. Good deal or not? I wonder what happens if you don't sign the release form? 




Anon1234
Anon1234   |     |   22 posts since 2010
If you bite on the $25K offer, aren't you going to be looking over your shoulder to see what this credit union is going to pull next until the CD matures?  Also, how do you know different members haven't received different (better / more generous) offers?   

The mess has the whiff of a class action suit looking for a place to happen and they are trying to head it off with this latest action.  Valor knows full well that what they have done is wrong, but hope that this token offer will appease members who brought their actions to the attention of the CFPB and NCUA.    Why else would they want a signed release?   Realistically though the only ones who make money on class action suits are the attorneys and maybe the lead plaintiff.  Also, this type of action, even if it were successful,  doesn't guarantee they won't pull more tricks out of their bag to hammer their members before they inevitably go under.    

Finally, the Bogleheads post included a mention of a "no discussion of this settlement" clause in the Valor offer.  Some friendly advice, if you are thinking of accepting, don't forget they are probably monitoring DA, Bogleheads and other sites where the matter is being discussed. 
Francis1
Francis1   |     |   13 posts since 2014
Well I don't even know what my letter says so I'm not discussing my specific offer. But, why would they not allow you to discuss it? Your speculation that the offer may vary has merit in my opinion. Of course they know what they did is wrong. But I don't think that would be enough to offer us something. More like if their legal counsel determined they were at risk. 
I don't know what I'll do with whatever they may offer me. But I am wary of them trying other tricks down the road. They have a new CEO and I'm willing to give him a chance to make things right. But he has to prove himself through actions, not words. 
Anon1234
Anon1234   |     |   22 posts since 2010
I imagine the "do not discuss" clause is so that they won't get bombarded with requests for the same accommodation/deal, either through direct request to the credit union or by following the same escalation channel (complaint to CFPB) which may/not have led to the offer.    That is just speculation on my part, though.

If only a handful of people complained, not expecting anything, and are offered the chance to make a one-time additional deposit of $25K max, their exposure is limited to $25K times the number of people who complained.  If all of a sudden they are bombarded with "I want that deal too" requests from everyone who got one of the add-ons, their exposure is now several orders of magnitude greater.     They are right back where they started, having to deal with taking in potentially $25K from each member with an add-on CD, not as bad as if each member were allowed to add additional funds to top off deposits across their accounts to $250K, for example.

But as you say, you do not know what is in your letter, so you have not discussed your specific offer, which may or may not be like that discussed on Bogleheads. 
dave9354
dave9354   |     |   28 posts since 2010
I have not received a letter concerning the add on feature although I do have the 7 year add on CD. Are  they just sending them to members who complained? Have any other account holders received a letter? Why certified letters? Very expensive!
Anon1234
Anon1234   |     |   22 posts since 2010
I don't know how the credit union is determining who receives these letters.  Yes, the certified letters are an additional mail expense, but they provide proof of delivery to the depositor of whatever it is they are sending/trying to communicate, whether it is an offer like that discussed on Bogleheads, or some other message.    I understand you have to physically go to the PO to pick up certified mail, and sign with specific personal information as proof of delivery.
Francis1
Francis1   |     |   13 posts since 2014
Dave9354 -  I don't know the answers to your questions. But I have thought what if they are only sending the letters to customers who filed a complaint. This would minimize the cost yet would be an attempt to semi satisfy those who filed official complaints. This is all conjecture on my part. 
Anon1234, Your comments make sense, are informative and spot on. Thanks for posting them 
me1004
me1004   |     |   537 posts since 2010
This  is amazing. Let me get this straight.  They are refusing to  honor their contractual requirement. And now, because of fear they will be in legal trouble and serious liability, instead of honoring the contract, they are offering a very limited one-time honoring of the contractual requirements but only if you first permanently waive the contractual requirement at issue and absolve them of all liability? 

That is the worst conduct regarding CDs I have ever seen from any bank or credit union. As far as  I see it, this offer is an admission of guilt and liability! Use it! Someone, really, should sue their asses off, demand damages  that will outright bankrupt them for such conduct. Regulators should bee all over this kind of  conduct -- where are they? Regulators should be bringing criminal charges against the executives running this place!
lou
lou   |     |   680 posts since 2010
It would be great if Francis or anyone else would provide us with a PDF link of the letter with all personal information blocked out or redacted. Love to see the letter.
lou
lou   |     |   680 posts since 2010
Francis, just out of curiosity, who did you originally complain to?
Francis1
Francis1   |     |   13 posts since 2014
Lou, I voiced my complaint here - http://www.consumerfinance.gov/complaint/#bank-account. If i recall correctly I believe they additionally forwarded it to the NCAU. The process was the credit union had to contact us within 60 days so that's probably what the certified letter with the offer was. So,if one didn't register a complaing they probably didn't get a letter from Valor. Just my speculation.
I don't know what I'm going to do with the release form. I don't want to sign it and give up my rights. Here's the thing. Even if Valor was allowed to change the terms (which I don't believe) they did not abide by an NCAU regulation to provide at least a 30 day notice prior to the change. That's a clear violation. 
I understand what they offered, a 7 year add on certificate with unlimited deposits was foolish. But allowing a one time 25K deposit to give up all rights isn't enough. If they offered a say 100-150K cap on all accounts I'd sign the release. But that's just me.