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Balance Transfer Not Accepted

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In the last few weeks, I opened a Discover Miles Card account, which was offering one of the free 0% APR balance transfer deals. I decided to take advantage, to earn some interest on the credit.

Everything went smoothly until today. My Wachovia Visa (operated by MBNA) received the $7,500 and posted it to my account, leaving me with the credit. I called MBNA today in order to have the credit sent to me in the form of a check or a transfer into my Wachovia bank account, but it’s a no go. The only place they can send the check is back to where it came from — Discover Card. Apparently they consider this money laundering, and the person I spoke to is under the impression that this is the first time anyone has ever done this type of balance transfer.

I suggest if you want to to earn interest on your 0% APR balance transfer offers, stay away from using MBNA.

Updated June 17, 2014 and originally published October 20, 2005. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about Luke Landes and follow him on Twitter. View all articles by .


avatar MyMoneyBlog

That’s a bummer, I usually transfer to Citibank, you can request a credit check online, no human acknowledgement required. Or, I guess you can try another CSR?

avatar MyMoneyBlog

You probably still have time to do another balance transfer to another card, yes? Just get MBNA to send it back, and do another BT to Citibank (ask if they let you do it to a checking account directly).

avatar Luke Landes

The CSR at MBNA transferred me to some kind of credit specialist who informed me that transfering money to a credit account without a balance is considered laundering. My account is flagged because of this, so any CSR there would do the same. I am going to contact Discover directly once the money is sent back; the “credit specialist” informed me it might take several days because they may have to “investigate.” I don’t see what the big deal is, transferring balances from one credit card to another seems to be very distant from money laundering.

avatar KN

I encountered this exact same issue with MBNA during this past summer! I opened up a 0% BofA credit card and did a transfer balance to MBNA. I called up MBNA to get a check issued to me for my credit and they gave me the lecture about it being considered *money laundering*. The CSR @ MBNA told me that some people hide their money in the form of large credits on their credit cards. Anyway, when MBNA tried to send the money back to BofA, the money got *lost*. MBNA claimed they returned the money to BofA, but the money wasn’t in my BofA account. Apparently, MBNA sent the money back to BofA, but BofA didn’t know which account # to send the money to. It was an absolute nightmare and took numerous phone calls to straighten out. Sorry to hear you’re encountering the same problems!! p.s. Here’s the MBNA phone # you’ll need to keep handy: 1-866-877-0241

avatar jim

I have an MBNA card and they have Bill Pay, try using the bill pay to pay another credit card that will allow you to receive a check for the balance. I’ve accidentally done this successfully.

avatar JS

I wonder if you could use a Visa or MasterCard debit card for the transfer or if Discover would recognize it as a debit card and not process the transfer. Just a thought.

avatar MyMoneyBlog

Warning: Doing what Jim suggest may very well work, but it also may result in the cancellation of ALL your MBNA cards. Several people have reported this on FW, especially if it a big amount.

It seems like Amex would be hit or miss too. I mentioned your woes in this recent blog post, with a screenshot of the Citi option, hope it helps. A reader reports success with American Express too. Good luck!

avatar Luke Landes

Thanks for the suggestions everyone and thanks for the mention, Jonathan.

At this point, MBNA has informed me they’re sending a check back to the originator, so I won’t have the option of doing anything else with the credit balance on that card. Once it is settled, I’ll try to have Discover perform a balance transfer to an unused Citi card or a debit card. I’m not sure all this trouble is worth the $162.50 in interest (minus taxes) I expect to make.

avatar jim

Hmmm glad I didn’t get in nickedI accidentally double paid a bill a few months ago.