Bank of America faces backlash for ending free checking

Posted at 11:12 PM, Jan 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-23 19:09:41-05

(RNN) - Bank of America is ending its free checking option, upsetting some customers enough that they've vowed to close their accounts. 

Customers who had free checking have been moved into accounts where they must maintain a minimum monthly balance of $1,500 or have at least $250 in direct deposits, or they will be charged $12 a month in maintenance fees, the Chicago Tribune reported.

A petition at urged Bank of America to reconsider, as the account rules cause a hardship to low-income customers.

"Many low income families do not meet these requirements. There have been times where I've only had $10 to my name. That wouldn't even cover the maintenance fee," the petitioner stated.

As of Tuesday night, the petition had more than 60,000 respondents.

Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-OH, said the move by Bank of America was yet another example that "trickle-down economic doesn't work." He also noted that the bank will be raking in $3.5 billion a year thanks to the GOP tax bill.

Some account holders plan to move their accounts to protest the decision even though they aren't personally affected by the bank's move.

One man said on Twitter, "I'm a platinum account holder ... with business and personal accounts and several cards. Everything is free for me, but you're going to charge struggling people fees instead? Pulling out my accounts as soon as I can."

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