After spending months on the customer service merry-go-round, a woman called NBC 6 Responds to find out what happened to two credit card payments she says were never applied to her account.
Nannette Siegel says she opened a retail credit card account with the Loft so she could buy her favorite T-shirts.
But what she wasn't expecting was hours on the phone trying to figure out what happened to two money orders she sent for payments.
Siegel has been working to track down the two payments she says she mailed to her credit company months ago.
"Just the hours and hours and hours and hours, spent on a daily basis, listening to a pre-recorded messages, trying to get to someone that is a human being," Siegel said.
In October, Siegel paid her credit card bill the same way she had done every other month. She mailed a $500 money order to Ann Taylor and its bank Comenity to pay off the balance on her Loft Card.
"It wasn't applied to my account," Siegel said. "So I waited and I thought I am going to get a finance charge and late payment, let me get another money order."
In November, she says she sent another $500 money order the same way.
In December, she discovered neither payment had been applied to her account.
She says a representative with the bank told her the money orders were never received and that they would investigate.
"I filled out the paperwork to do the research on who cashed the money order," Siegel said.
She found out those money orders had been cashed, but still not applied to her account. That's when she reached out to NBC 6 Responds.
"They should give me some answers, and it shouldn't take from October to June to take care of it," Siegel said.
NBC 6 Responds sent an email to the Loft's Parent Company and did not get a reply. Siegel then called and told them she had reached out to NBC 6 Responds. She says within hours, she heard back that Comenity Bank found her money. It turns out it had been applied to a closed credit card account with Ann Taylor.
Siegel's $1,000 payment has now been applied to her account and Comenity has reimbursed her for $155 dollars in finance charges. The bank wouldn't give NBC 6 details about how it happened or what she could have done to make sure her payments were applied properly.
But we found she's not the only one who experienced this type of retail credit card confusion.
According to the Better Business Bureau, Comenity Bank has earned an 'F' rating with one of the top complaint categories being billing and collection issues.
The BBB said they found 44 percent of industry complaints in the last year were for Comenity Bank.
A representative for Comenity told NBC 6 in a statement, "Comenity is committed to an exceptional cardmember experience and our customer care teams are recognized across the industry for their customer-friendly approach. They receive extensive training and work with cardmembers individually to resolve their personal situations. Comenity has one of the lowest complaint rates per million active accounts compared to our peers and prioritizes addressing and resolving consumer complaints."
According to a representative, Comenity's statement about a low complaint rate is based on "aggregated data made available in the BCFP (Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, formerly CFPB) Public Database and other available industry data, encompassing all complaint types tracked by the BCFP and a peer group that includes other leading credit card providers."
For Siegel, this was a learning lesson.
"I always made the payments with money orders, I don't do that anymore," Siegel said.
She may be changing how she makes her payments but not what she buys.
"I haven't found any place that has t-shirts, that are that comfortable, and they last awhile and I like them," Siegel said.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau says if you notice a billing error, one way to protect yourself in addition to calling is you should send a notice in writing to the card issuer within 60 days.