Provident Funding is responding to the concerns you relayed during our December 23, 2019 telephone conversation and the complaint you subsequently submitted to the Better Business Bureau.
We have investigated this matter and determined 1) the December 9, 2019 returned payment fee in the amount of $25.00 was properly assessed, 2) the December 2019 late charge in the amount of $24.04 was properly assessed, and 3) no errors occurred on the part of Provident Funding in relation to this matter. Therefore, the two referenced fees, which total $49.04, will not be waived. These determinations are outlined in more detail below.
Our records reflect you enrolled in our monthly autopay service on March 25, 2005, which prompted the enclosed April 15, 2005 notice to be mailed to you. As outlined on that notice, we requested that you notify us if the account from which the payment is drafted needed to be changed or you had any questions. We have confirmed the routing number and account number utilized for our monthly autopay service remained the same for the successfully drafted May 2005 – November 2019 payments.
As you relayed during our December 23, 2019 telephone conversation, prior to the December 2019 monthly autopay being initially drafted on December 5, 2019, you received notification from your financial institution that they had merged with another entity and your account number had been changed as a result. However, we have no record of you notifying us that the account from which the monthly autopay service is drafted needed to be changed prior to December 5, 2019. As such, your original account information was utilized for the December 5, 2019 draft, and on December 9, 2019 we were alerted that your financial institution rejected the draft due to an invalid account number.
On the same day we were alerted of the rejected draft, in accordance with our standard procedures, a $25.00 returned payment fee was assessed to your account, an e-mail was sent to your most recently reported e-mail address to notify you of the returned payment and that a payment needed to be made by December 16, 2019 to avoid the assessment of a late charge, and a notification was also mailed to your most recently reported mailing address to notify you of the returned payment and that a payment needed to be made by December 16, 2019 to avoid the assessment of a late charge. On December 10, 2019, another e-mail and notice were sent to notify you that your monthly autopay service had been discontinued and you would need to enroll again in that service if you wished. Copies of those e-mails and notices have been enclosed for your reference.
We note that the referenced e-mails were system generated and stated replies to those messages would not be read or responded to. Additionally, our records reflect you enrolled in our e-mail notification service on April 19, 2013 and instructed us to utilize xxxx, and that you did not instruct us to utilize a different e-mail address until you spoke with one of our customer service representatives on December 23, 2019 and provided an updated e-mail address of xxxx. Allow me to confirm that the e-mail address for our notification service was promptly updated to xxxx effective December 23, 2019 pursuant to your request.
Concerning the December 2019 late charge, as reflected on the enclosed 2019 payment history, your December 2019 payment was made on December 23, 2019 through a one-time online payment. According to the terms of the enclosed copy of the Promissory Note you executed at the closing of this loan, a late charge will be assessed if a payment is not received by the 1st of the month due date or within the additional 15 calendar days that are provided for unexpected delays or issues. It is the responsibility of the borrower to ensure payments are received in accordance with the terms of the Promissory Note on the 1st of the month and within the grace period to avoid the assessment of a late charge. As we did not successfully receive a payment for your December 1, 2019 installment by the first of the month due date or within the allotted grace period, a late charge in the amount of $24.04 was properly assessed to your account.
While we appreciate your efforts to submit timely payments for this loan, the assessment of returned payment fees and late charges is not based on a customer’s payment history, and we do not offer courtesy returned payment fee and/or late charge waivers. We apply our policies fairly and equally to all customers, and as our representatives previously informed you, we do adhere very strictly to a policy of waiving returned payment fees and late charges only when we have made an error.
Taking all the above into consideration, we have determined 1) the December 9, 2019 returned payment fee in the amount of $25.00 was properly assessed, 2) the December 2019 late charge in the amount of $24.04 was properly assessed, and 3) no errors occurred on the part of Provident Funding in relation to this matter. As stated at the beginning of this letter, the referenced two fees, which total $49.04, will not be waived.
For your records, since your December 1, 2019 installment was successfully received within the same month it was due, no derogatory information has been or will be reported to the credit bureaus and this matter will not negatively affect your credit score.
As of the date of this letter, your next installment in the amount of $xxxx will become due on January 1, 2020 and you have not reenrolled in our monthly autopay service. If you would like to reenroll in that service, you may do so through your ***************** account or by speaking with one of our customer service representatives at ************, option 7. Please be advised that you will need to reenroll in our monthly autopay service by January 2, 2020 if you would like to have it in effect for your January 2020 payment.