• Report:  #67908

Complaint Review: Circuit City - First North American National Bank - Myrtle Beach South Carolina

Reported By:
- Myrtle Beach, South Carolina,

Circuit City - First North American National Bank
508 Seaboard Street Myrtle Beach, 29577 South Carolina, U.S.A.
Tell us has your experience with this business or person been good? What's this?
Circuit City promotes "No Interest for 13 Months" credit purchase offers, then permits First North American National Bank, which issues "Circuit City Visa Plus" accounts in some type of affiliation with Circuit City, to uses extremely creative bookkeeping techniques to snare unsuspecting customers of Circuit City's "No Interest" promotional offerings into succumbing to 15.9% interest charges on these supposed "No Interest Purchase" promotions.

We purchased $866.11 in items, not covered by the "No Interest" offer, at Circuit City with our Bank of America Visa credit card. The next day, we purchased a $2,000.00 item on the "No Interest for 13 Months" offered credit plan through First North American National Bank. Additionally, we were persuaded to "return" the $866.11 items purchased the day before, receiving a "credit" on our Bank of America Visa card, and "repurchasing" these $866.11 items on a "non-promotion" basis on the First North American National Bank Visa card.

That night, I read the fine print at First North American National Bank's web site. To begin with, all payments made are first credited to the "No Interest" promotion purchase. If the customer wishes to have payments credited to non-promotion purchases, the customer must notify the bank. There is, however, no method of speaking to a real person at the bank's listed telephone number and no response is received to letters sent to the "Mail Billing Inquiries To" address.

Prior to receiving my first statement, I wished to pay off the $866.11 items immediately and finally made telephonic contact by selecting the telephonic option "Cancel My Credit Card," which was answered by a real person. I made my desire known and was instructed to write a letter with my check. Not only did I write the letter, but I placed my desires onto my $866.11 check to pay off the $866.11 "non-promotinal" purchase. Additionally, I made a large payment on the remaining "Non-Interest" promotion, having calculated the monthly payments required over the next 12 months to make certain that I would not run over the 13 month grace period.

My first statement arrived by US Mail from the bank's Georgia office to my South Carolina post office box. It had been postmarked 11 days earlier and was due in 6 days after receipt. The Postmaster assured me that it was impossible for this statement to have been enroute for 11 days from a neighboring state. Each additional statement received over the life of the promotion was similarly delayed. Of course, if one makes a single payment late, the "No Interest" promotion reverts to "15.9% Accumulated Deferred Finance Charges". Surprise, Surprise!

I also noticed that the "Minimum Payment Due" on each statement would not even come close to paying off the balance by the end of the promotion term, obviously to entice customers into making such minimum payments and then finding themselves at a large pay-off at the end of the promotion term, or with "15.9% Accumulated Deferred Finance Charges."

Subsequent statements revealed, even though I had paid off the $866.11 non-promotion items before the first statement arrived, this $866.11 charge was now accruing interest, as this payment had been lumped in with my "promotion" payment instead. Threatening to return all items to the Circuit City store manager's desk was rewarded by a telephone connection, at the store, with a confidential number to the bank, through which the finance charge was reversed and the $866.11 was credited appropriately.

Having only purchased one (1) television set on "promotion," all of the sudden, the remainder of the $2,000.00 "promotion" balance became 2 separate item balances. Then these 2 separate item balances became 3, with the smallest balance now being credited with my payments. The balance was then reduced to 2 separate items again, with one balance being $866.11 (my goodness, isn't that the original "non-promotinal" balance), and the other item balance being $8.89. Of course, my payments are currently being applied to the now $866.11 "promotional" balance and none to the $8.89 second balance. Should I be late in paying the $8.89 portion of the balance, the entire "Accumulated Deferred Finance Charges" over the 13 month period would become due.

I am not stupid! I have already pre-scheduled the last payment with my bank to arrive at their bank exactly 30 days prior to the last payment due date. But what about other customers of Circuit City, who did not read the fine print and cannot understand just what Circuit City and this bank are doing to lull them into accepting a "No Interest for 13 Months" offer and then snaring them with 15.9% Accumulate Deferred Finance Charges instead.


Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Circuit City

Click here to see why we deleted either a phone number, link or e-mail address from this report.

Reports & Rebuttal
Respond to this report!
Also a victim?
Repair Your Reputation!