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Check Your ING Direct Overdraft Protection

This article was written by in Banking. 34 comments.


If you have ING Direct’s “Electric Orange” checking account with an overdraft line of credit, check your account if you haven’t done so recently. A number of readers commented today that their overdraft limit has been reduced or eliminated over the last few days.

Divine responded to an earlier post about ING Direct closing customer accounts for bad credit:

I have also had my overdraft changed from $250.00 to $.00. This happened today. I logged into my account yesterday and it was there. I was a little worried so I called up and was told they check my credit report periodically and that was the reason why. The agent did not say anything about my account was going to be closed.

ING Direct’s latest terms of service explain that credit reports are checked occasionally, and the bank may decide to limit overdraft lines of credit based on the latest data.

You shouldn’t rely on overdraft protection; rather, strive to write checks only for what you have in the bank, never beyond your real balance. But mistakes can happen, and if you’re used to having a line of credit that suddenly disappears, you could find yourself in a sticky situation.

Girlthree says:

I received an email today stating that my account was OD by $10.00. I went into my saving to transfer the funds and only then realized that my OD has gone from $1,000.00 to $25.00. Called and got the same response, they are trying to help me save money and letters went out last night. I told the agent that it would have been nice if I received the letter first.

Any changes to your account should come in writing, 30 days before the changes are put into effect. This process of makeing substantial changes without warning is not the way business should be done. This is a poor policy.

Check your account to make sure you’re aware of any changes.

Updated May 20, 2013 and originally published October 10, 2007. 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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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 .

{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar FinanceAndFat

Interesting. I had pretty weak credit when I opened my account, only a couple of months ago, and my line has not changed- $165.

Have they been getting burned by people on the overdraft system? Seems a bit of an odd change.

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avatar girlthree

I would think not, since it is tied to your savings account.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,500 (Platinum)

girlthree: I need to clarify — your ING savings account will NOT be used to cover any overdraft on your ING checking account. From the ING Direct FAQ:

Can I set up my Orange Savings Account to cover me as overdraft?
No. We want to ensure our Customers don’t accidentally exceed the monthly limit of six withdrawals on an Orange Savings Account. But you can transfer money from your Orange Savings Account at any time, 24/7 at ingdirect.com.

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avatar girlthree

Sorry — What I intended to say was that you could use the funds in you savings to transfer to the checking acount.

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avatar tba02

No change for me as of yet. Still at 165.00 not that I ever need it.

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avatar Lulu

My ING line of credit has not dropped. A few months ago when they started to close accounts I got a letter saying my OD was being taken away. I called them and they said it was a mistake and they put it back on.

Since then I have not had any problems and as of 5 minutes ago my OD line is still high. I have never used it and I just pretend it is not there because I do not want to go into OD.

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avatar Dorothy

I have had my account for over a year and ING checked my credit initially when I first opened the account. My credit has not changed since that time and they opened my OD line of credit knowing full well what my credit was like. I have direct deposit and pay it off every 2 weeks and use it again. I made a payment by check to Countrywide that was never received. After 3 weeks, the payment still had not been received so I placed a stop payment. The representative from ING told me to reissue the payment. Based on the advice of the ING rep, I immediately called Countrywide and reissued the payment via ACH using my routing and account number. The next day, ING closed my overdraft line and then bounced my payment to Countrywide. Had they informed me beforehand that they were going to close my line, I would have made alternate payment arrangements for my house payment. Now I have to pay bounce check fees to Countrywide! It is extremely negligent of ING to have done this to their customers with no notice.

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avatar Michele

Just got the email this morning that my 1000 has been changed to 25.

Initially this was done in May and then I received an apology and encouraged to use this account again (see below):

On behalf of my colleagues at ING DIRECT, I wish to sincerely apologize for the email you received regarding the closure of your Electric Orange. Your checking account will not be closed as indicated in the email correspondence. Also, your overdraft line of credit will be active within 48 hours. You are a valued Customer and we encourage you to continue to use this account. Again, I apologize for the inconvenience this mistake may have caused you.

If you have any questions, give us a call at
1-888-464-0727.

Jim Kelly
Chief Operating Officer
ING DIRECT

No warning….just removed my “spending power” and thats that….I think I am going to close both my savings and checking with them as they are not a reliable company

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avatar Chris

Hmm…I have no change in mine. The OD is a convenience (with a fee), but I can’t see closing my account because they decide to revoke it. So long as they are not touching my money, they can do what they want with their open credit lines. I did not sign up with ING for a line of credit, I signed up for an interest bearing account.

If people are abusing the OD feature and they are losing money, I am happy with them reducing or eliminating it on ‘high risk’ customers, if that is what it takes to keep the interest high on all our checking accounts.

$25 sounds like a pretty reasonable overdraft amount anyway. If someone is using $1,000 in overdraft protection, they should probably reexamine their planning strategy. The OD, in my opinion, is something for that “oops!” miscalculation moment, not a “Well, I haven’t got enough money to pay this bill till Friday, so I’ll just use this line of credit to do it anyway” moment.

Just my opinion.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,500 (Platinum)

Chris: I agree. Unfortunately, from some emails I’ve been getting, it sounds like account holders who never used their OD protection are seeing reductions or eliminations of their credit line, due only to a credit report check. I think this is fine, but there should be fair warning (30 days)… not an email after the fact.

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avatar Chris

Flexo: It might not even just be their credit report. ING probably just has a program that identifies risk customers based on a wide range of variables. It could be that they dipped their balances too close to zero so-many times, or have a certain number of transactions that correlate to others who abuse the system. That would explain in my mind why other commenters say they have called ING and had it corrected because it was a “mistake”…the computer program just picked them for whatever reason.

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avatar Phyllis

Mine was closed as well, without notice. My main complaints were one- I didn’t ask for the Line of Credit, it was given to me. I have used it, and I have always replinished the money within 5 days of using it. My credit has not changed- so I’m not understanding why the change all of a sudden. I think it’s backwards for them to open the LOC at the time of opening the checking account, then close it months later, especially if someone was using it wisely and repaying it on time. And my second complaint was just the lack of notice. I found out by suprise when I went to check the available LOC and saw it $0′d out. I should have known BEFORE hand, not after the fact.

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avatar Arher

I recently received the same notice about having my overdraft limit reduced to 0. I am going to take my banking needs elsewhere.

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avatar Ryan

My OD was closed today as well. Based on my conversation with an ING rep this morning, it had nothing to do with my credit score or balance (774 and 85k respectfully). Apparently ING has lost too much money to people who treated the overdraft feature like spendable money and their corporate office made the decision to revoke almost everyone’s access to the feature this week.

The rep said they didn’t run any credit checks and that the corporate office told them they would reconsider reauthorizing the featuer in about 90 days to those that are willing to submit to a credit check and a minimum balance.

Lovely.

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avatar mapgirl

Ryan – It sounds like most people who had it revoked, actually used it. I have it with my ING checking account and my OD balance hasn’t changed, but I don’t think my credit is all that great. It’s at 696 last I checked.

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avatar Bob in Oklahoma

ING Direct recently acquired many of the assets of NetBank.com, the latter having gone under due to their “subprime lending” practices. An ING Direct customer service (haha!) rep with whom I spoke today confirmed that, in the takeover process, ING cancelled all NetBank customers’ lines of credit WITH NO ADVANCE NOTICE. (Yes, she confirmed the “no notice” part of the preceding sentence, saying that “notice was not required by law”… or, apparently, simple “customer relations”.) As a consequence, I’m sure that I’m not alone in having had several payments “bounced”, as well as incurring NSF fees at $30 a pop, plus charges from the merchants who didn’t receive payment. To me, whether notice is required or not, this constitutes outright fraud on the part of ING Direct for the sole purpose of imposing unwarranted fees, and I will soon be taking my business elsewhere.

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avatar Dorothy

I urge everyone who had transactions that were initiated before closure of their accounts to contact the Better Business Bureau. Wether they are required to give notice or not, it is still morally and ethically wrong that they did this without notification hence taking our credibility with merchants and destroying it by making it look like we wrote checks with non sufficient funds and costing us fees along with our reputations. The information is below:

Fax: 302-230-0116

Email: asmulski@delaware.bbb.org
http://www.bbb.org
BBB of Delaware
60 Reads Way
New Castle, DE 19720

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avatar Bob in Oklahoma

Dorothy’s advice is certainly good. After I posted my earlier message, it occurred to me that the Delaware Attorney General’s office might be able to provide some assistance on behalf of those of us who have been shafted by ING.

You can obtain a complaint form and instructions at: link

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avatar Tammy

I had the same thing happen to me too. I had a measly $165.00 overdraft limit on my checking – and yes, I did use it on occasion, and it really helped me at times knowing it was there. I am a single mom, living from paycheck to paycheck – who happen to ONLY get paid every other week. This small overdraft amount was a HUGE piece of mind for me. And I loved my ING checking account, used them all the time to write my checks, and I told everyone how awesome they were.
And then I got the email telling me they were taking my overdraft protection away!
This broke my heart – and now I just do not know what I did wrong. Besides having bad credit which I am trying to repair. This was just not fair. Is there anyone I can complain to about this?

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avatar Lauren

Mine was reduced to $25. Frankly it is a bit inconvenient to me as well, as I only use that account for any unexpected medical payments I may have to make POS. I had my cash in there, plus 250 overdraft, and felt very comfortable leaving my credit card at home when going to the dentist, eye doctor, or doctor. I just withdrew the necessary money from my short term emergency fund and was done with it, no credit card involved.

Not too happy with ING these days. I’ve already moved my long term savings to E Trade with no problems so far. I will most definitely not be using their services as they become more and more like a brick and mortar bank, which they originally sought to provide an alternative to.

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avatar Tammy

My thoughts exactly. I got a “Newsletter” just the other day with the Ceo’s email addy. I suggest we all write to let them know just how we feel. I told him that I thought they WERE becoming just another bank.
ceocorner@ingdirect.com

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avatar George

I don’t understand why everyone is so attached to their tiny lines of credit.

I always wished they would offer an account without overdraft protection.

if you need credit, why not use a credit card, instead of trying to combining checking account and line of credit.

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avatar Dorothy

What people are not realizing is that the line of credit is not necessarily the issue. This is a copy of the response that I sent to the Ombudsman regarding the closure of my OD line of credit:

What you are failing to realize is the intensity of the problem that your company has caused not just to myself but to many, many others. You closed the line of credit with no notice while people had existing transactions drawn from them. You made it appear that people wrote checks or initiated payments with non sufficient funds. This could very well be considered a type of fraud! This not only damages ones reputation with a creditor, vendor, etc. but also causes other problems such as non sufficient funds charges and inability to write checks or use ACH with those certain creditors, vendors, etc. While this does no longer affect me because my line of credit is paid off, it still did affect me the day that you did it. I had 1 transaction pending on my account. Fortunately for me it worked out that the ACH did not immediately clear; however, it could very well have gone the other way. That check was for my HELOC to Countrywide and they would have charged me a return check fee and not allowed me to issue payment via ACH for an entire year. What you did cannot be legal! I am positive that I am not the only one that had pending transactions. I have been reading all of the consumer comments and blogs on several sites and have been corresponding with them. It has nothing to do with my credit being up to your standards or not or with me having an overdraft line of credit or not. It has everything to do with the fact that your negligence has cost your customers overdraft fees and penalties that otherwise would never have existed. You made it appear that numerous people had initiated payments with non sufficient funds. How completely humiliating! You must be held accountable and I am going to do everything I can to see that you are. I have filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and have received information from another gentleman on how to file a complaint with the attorney general. My opinion my not count to you as I am only one individual, but I will make sure that I am heard and that the numerous other customers who have had their reputations scarred due to your negligence are heard! Perhaps then you will understand the message I am trying to convey and not simply believe that I am just some sap that had her line of credit revoked and is angry because of it. This message will be posted on the web.

Disappointed yet again,

Dorothy

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avatar Tammy

Well, for ME – it’s called “protection.” Considering I get paid every other week, I enjoyed the fact that I had a small piece of mind – in case anything went wrong. I do not like credit cards nor do I use them. I got into trouble a long time ago with them.
So I never took on any others. My credit is not so perfect either, so I would have to pay a huge charge on using them.

ING was perfect for me. Simple as that.

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avatar Tammy

Excellent letter Dorothy. I agree with it all too. I too had some pending transactions out there also.

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avatar InspectorFox

Is there any chance of a class action lawsuit? Does anyone know how a class action lawsuit can be initiated? I am ready to fight out against ING’s discriminstion.

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avatar Tammy

I don’t know if there is – but if someone decides to start one – I am in!

I am sending all my business to ETrade. I just opened up an account with them.

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avatar Mohan

ING Direct is way to go: No

Dear Wellsfargo, ING Direct bank has never charged any Overdraft fee, and Wellsfargo shoudl also not charge it, otherwise I will need make ING Direct my primary checking account and close this Wellsfargo acct, and also let my friends know on facebook that INGDirect charges no overdraft fees.

Hello, for recent $10 overdraft fee , can you please refund that ? there was a bank error with dates which led to overdraft. I have paid back all the money checking acct to VISA card. Thanks, Avinash

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avatar Duane

Country home loans took out mortage payment when they said they would not causing me around $300.00 in over limit fees i even have a
comfirmation #.any ideas?

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avatar Thomas B.

Does overdraft matter at all? ING does not assess fees for overdrafts, just charges a nominal interest rate. This is true even if you set your overdraft protection to $0.

What’s the significance of the overdraft protection?

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avatar Thomas B.

Does overdraft matter at all? ING does not assess fees for overdrafts, just charges a nominal interest rate. This is true even if you set your overdraft protection to $0.

What's the significance of the overdraft protection?

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avatar C

Does ING do a credit check when applying for an RRSP loan?

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avatar Ruf

The real problem with a ING overdraft line of credit is that they pull your credit report periodically.
This in itself can lower your credit rating at least temporarily…no thanks.
I just got a email today saying the overdraft interest was being increased from 7% to over 11%.
I called them and had the overdraft protection removed or basically reduced to zero.
They tried to talk me out of it but I explained that if a purchase was declined on my ING debit card I would simply use one of my credit cards which have a 5.25% interest rate. BTW, my FICO is 849.
Fortunately, the federal Card Act allows you to opt-out of overdraft protection.
When I opened my ING account 3 years ago ING’s overdraft protection was mandatory.

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avatar C. Sterling Wolfe, Esq.

The number of insane robotic self-destructive actions undertaken by ing toward me through my “ingdirect” account are several times more severe than my worst experience with banking, a large banking institution much larger than ING about 5-7 years ago. When that far bigger corporation’s lawyers got word how horrifyingly stupid and self-destructive the “human bots” including supervisors suffice it to say that the legal department 1) was beyond horrified; 2) rushed to write me a very large check, approximately 100 times that of the chump change they alleged I owed them; 3) “encouraged” a senior VP of that bank to call me and sincerely apologize.

Bless this board for not being overrun by the usual number of “fake happy customers” who call ING angelic, and everybody else just idiots who deserved the treatment they received.

I went with ING because I hate phones, and like doing business online. Go figure. It’s MUCH quicker to simply hit buttons and get things DONE.

ING over a period of months, has breached the customer agreement, with no notice, in almost more ways then I can count. It would take several pages (which have been sent to ING several times, in an attempt to “stop the madness”).

No letter or phone call or correspondance resulted in anything but robots. 1) Robots responding through boilerplate with a human name attached, answering or explaning absolutely nothing, ignoring every problem; 2) Robots who read from screens, followed by supervisors who read from screens, and will not answer ANY question that HELPS ME UNDERSTAND HOW I CAN PAY THEM, GIVEN THEIR CRAZY ACTIONS TO MAKE SURE I CANNOT.

The last little stunt ING pulled on me was to change my PIN without my permission, or notice, so that I was locked out of paying them online, or getting any information from my online account, including balance owed.

This sounds surreal, but I swear on my life this is true, what I’ve said before or hereafter. So I called them after they ignored every communication except with nonsense boilerplate gibberish saying “call them.”

So I called them. I explained that I would like to get them paid, and was not thrilled with an online bank locking me out without my permission so that I could -not- pay them online by hitting a button. They refused to answer -any- question for -ING’s- benefit, as they had refused to explain the repercussions of any of their weird lose-lose actions for months. Reps and tech reps simply repeated a glassy eyed “Sir, ING has refused to do business with you.” Anything I asked, including “what that meant” they would not answer, they would simply repeat that mantra, including sensible items for win-win resolution that would HELP ME PAY THEM. They endlessly put me on hold many times, where I got to listen to endless salespitches how I could “go online to handle things” (or whatever). Well, let’s see. I’m locked out of my online account, per your unilateral breach without notification of my customer services agreement, and anything I’ve ever corresponded to you in writing, you respond with nothing but auto-blather plus “call us.” After endless holds, they would get back on the phone and simply repeat the mantra “sir, we have terminated our business agreement with you.”

After maybe 45 minutes of this stupid self-destructive game, after attempts to get to a supervisor who perhaps would do ANYTHING other than repeat this senseless non-helpful mutual loss loss mantra, I got a “supervisor.”

I explained to a supervisor that horrifically violating terms of service followed by the final locking me out of my online banking account was not terribly win-win of ING. But after she too would only repeat “Sir, we’ve decided to terminate our business relationship,” I asked her to please take a note on the conversation, after she refused to pass me onto legal, or tell me whether I could talk to legal, after she had refused to answer the question whether legal resolution was discussed whether she would terminate the conversation.

I told her to note that ING was preventing me from paying them, refusing to answer any questions, refusing to explain, in any language, let alone english, what the mantra MEANT in the real world they insisted on repeating was not good business for any customer. But perhaps they’d like to consider what the repurcussions of doing that to a trial attorney with nearly a 100% win record against corporations bigger than them, with 25,000 hours of litigation experience against mega-corporations who had lost their minds and couldn’t or wouldn’t even -discuss- win-win matters.

She refused to note that, saying “we have decided to terminate our business agrement with you, and at $350.00 an hour for my time, I had indeed was “far less than polite with her.” I appreciate her then saving me time by simply hanging up on me.

Save the snarky criticism of I should have done “this, that, or the other.” There is, for instance, NOTHING you could think of or communicate to them to solve this I did not try.

EVERY communication I have written to ANY person other than the CEO explaining that their decisions were certainly not “win-win” and might not work out terribly well for them have been ignored, since that last phone debacle.

I HATE to litigate. I want OUT of my nasty profession, where corporations will spend $500,000-$1,000,000 fees just to prove that “we will stop at nothing to crush you” (only to be then crushed, following that writing a big huge settlement check with a ton of zeros).

About the only thing I hate less than litigating or a profession I wish to leave, however, is megacorporations from “idiocracy” programmed for basic self-destruction with lose-lose stupidity.

I will make one last attempt to that e-mail somebody posted to the “CEO-bot,” along with contacting every firm that’s defended them for the last years. Since they wish to waste my time so badly at $350.00/hour, I feel I owe it to them to return the favor and waste their lawyers time too. “Golden Rule, 101.” Clearly, that’s how they wish to be treated. Then if they fail to respond in a win-win fashion, I will refuse to repeat the same act for the fourth month in a row, and I will proceed differently.

Yes, lawyers suck, lawsuits suck, class actions suck, and nobody wins. Except the attorneys. But after they refuse to even consider easy win-wins like oh, I don’t know, this online bank having let me pay them online, I no longer see an alternative after I throw one last “hail mary.”

Best wishes, everybody.

Not sure I’ll respond to any commentary. We’ll see. Not interested in wasting 3 years of my life, no matter how many brinks loads of money I would make off a class action, if they just FINALLY just show SOME common sense and resolve this with my privately, with me having bent over backward so far to “help them help themselves” I have back cramps.

I’ve seen a lot of crazy banks act against their own self-interest. INGdirect is in a league of its own.

C. Sterling Wolfe, Esq., Los Angeles

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