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At the end of May '23 I walked into my local WF branch with the instructions from WISE Bank on how to wire 72,000 euros to their Belgian branch. This was my first international transfer. The banker for some reason had me change the Beneficiary to my name, and to my lawyer's address and decided to send it in USD ($77,500) I signed the paperwork because the banker told me this is how it had to be done.

Of course the transfer is denied but not before it goes untraceable for almost 3 weeks. When returned to my account it's $2200 short & WF says they are not responsible for conversion losses. They've asked for no documentation from me ( the transfer instructions I gave them) and refuse to acknowledge that their rep changed the transfer details. Having done numerous transfers since then I now know the rules & regs - which makes it even more infuriating because this transfer order was wrong in so many ways. But, again I was doing what the banker told me had to be done.

Do banks have a "Mediation" dept? It's ridiculous that this would have to go to court when the law (UCC Article 4) is clear. The bank did not follow my instructions(4-A 302) and per 4-A 305 (iii) issuance of a payment order that does not comply with the terms of the payment order of the originator, the bank is liable to the originator for its expenses in the funds transfer and for incidental expenses and interest losses

Any other remedies besides calling my lawyer?

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    If you signed the transfer request and the bank executed what was in that request then the bank did follow your instructions. I suggest you talk to an attorney if you want to consider legal action.
    – littleadv
    Nov 16, 2023 at 23:46
  • It was the bank that told me I had to change the transfer request and the proof I have is the document/ instructions that I brought in and they copied. If you're right then banks have no liability when it comes to dispensing instructions and 4-A 302 is moot: "(1) The receiving bank is obliged to issue, on the execution date, a payment order complying with the sender's order and to follow the sender's instructions" The payment order did not comply with my order and instructions. Nov 16, 2023 at 23:59
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    The instructions is what you signed. It doesn't matter what was in your pocket
    – littleadv
    Nov 17, 2023 at 0:02
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    From what you're describing, the bank didn't change your instructions - you did. Bottom line, if you want to go to court - talk to a lawyer.
    – littleadv
    Nov 17, 2023 at 3:16
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    Sending US$ to a Euro account just means that the conversion happens on the receiving end and is done by the receiving bank. There's nothing weird or wrong with that - it's just a choice you make when initiating the payment (much like choosing US$ or local currency when using a credit-card while travelling). WF didn't do anything wrong just by sending US$ to a Euro account. Ultimately, everything written on the transfer instruction form which you signed is your instruction to WF. Anything else you may have given to them is largely irrelevant.
    – brhans
    Nov 19, 2023 at 13:36

1 Answer 1

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Consider contacting Consumer Finance Protection (CFPB). You can file a complaint with them. I don't have any personal experience with CFPB but I've read that companies take the complaints very seriously.

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