Not sponsored/affiliate in any way, just came out of a stressful situation better than expected so thought I'd share this positive outcome/experience with Discover Bank for anyone in my position or similar—

Since Berkley Properties, LLC is incentivized by a $10/day late fee penalty to keep their autopay system (TWA for RentManager) in a state of severe disrepair, I thought I'd try my luck at my bank's “BillPay” system since it'd allegedly handle pushing money to a recalcitrant payee, guaranteed delivery before a deadline. (For EFT-capable recipients, payments are done through the banking system; other recipients receive a cashier's check by mail.)

Astonishingly, the property management "didn't receive" the check on time, and billed my tenant account for their incompetence. (Miraculously, they "found received it" lying under some other papers in their disorganized office within 2 hours of my stopping by to pester them on the matter…)

On hope, I reached out to my bank asking about this—the delivery was guaranteed 1 or 2 days before the due date, so I had hoped they had something substantiating this—it turns out, they did!

Per our Bill Pay Guarantee, we will reimburse you for any late fees that you incur as a result of a Bill Pay payment arriving after the Deliver By date that was confirmed when you scheduled the payment in the Discover Account Center (up to $50 per payment). In order to resolve this for you as quickly as possible, please reply to this message with the following information:

  1. What was your payment due date?
  2. What date did your payment post to your payee account?
  3. What was the amount of your late fee?

I supplied this information mid-day on a Tuesday (including relevant check numbers to expedite things); the reimbursement posted to my account on Thursday.

Obviously, I'll be making a point of personally handing a written check to the office and getting a receipt each month from here on out—that's less stressful than this whole song and dance, and doesn't incentivize anyone's bad behavior as much, or incentivize my bank to cancel such a generous policy—but if you've relied on your bank's “automatic billpay service” and been burned for it, I can recommend at least reaching out to see if your bank has a policy for this.

(I did ask them if they had an option for certified mail on automatic billpay—I'd be happy to pay the extra fee, I just don't want to have to remember the task every darn month—but Discover Bank did not offer this as of December 2022.)

Update: Hmm. 13 days after I posted this, my landlord announced it'll no longer be accepting in-person payments. I wonder if it's common practice for corporate officers to have Google Alerts set up for their company—cf. CAcert's curious timing in this thread?

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