Maribeth Flatley of Elizabeth was looking forward to a trip that was supposed to happen in May.
It was a 21-day tour of Scandinavia, starting off in Copenhagen, Denmark, then weaving through Sweden and Finland, and ending up in Oslo, Norway.
“I always wanted to visit this part of the world,” she said.
Flatley, 71, who uses a cane and an inhaler, took travel insurance to cover the nearly $10,000 trip, and she put the charge on her Wells Fargo credit card.
Then the coronavirus pandemic happened.
“Due to ill health, my doctor said I could not travel,” Flatley said. “I canceled the trip.”
Fortunately, Flatley had purchased travel insurance. The tour company ultimately canceled the trip, but Flatley would have gotten a credit for future travel, not a refund.
On March 26, she sent a cancelation notice to Aon, the travel insurance company. The company sent back a form for Flatley’s doctor to complete.
She gave it to her doctor, and then she waited.
When nothing happened by June, she asked Wells Fargo about the charge. Wells decided to put the charge in dispute, but when a credit showed on her statement, Flatley thought it was a refund through Aon.
But that was incorrect. Flatley didn’t realize it at the time, but the money showing in the account was a provisional credit from Wells Fargo as it investigated the dispute.
Later that month, Aon asked for another doctor’s letter, she said. They sent it in.
Over the next several months, Flatley stayed in touch with Wells Fargo about the money. No one gave her answers.
On Aug. 19, Flatley said, a representative from Wells Fargo said the case was escalated.
“He said this has gone on too long,” Flatley said.
But nothing was escalated except for the red tape.
In September, Aon asked once again for additional medical information from Flatley’s doctor.
“The doctor said he sent them information three times,” she said.
In October, the charge remained in dispute, but no one could from Wells could give Flatley an update, she said.
On Oct. 7, I spoke to a manager at the Wells Fargo, who spent an hour-and-a-half on the phone trying to help me, Flatley said. He said I would get a letter in three days. It never happened,” she added.
A week later, the manager suggested she call the number on the credit card, she said.
So she did. She was transferred to several people and was finally told an “advocate” would call her back.
That didn’t happen, either.
The phone calls continued, and finally, in October, Flatley received an email from a Wells Fargo representative who said she needed two weeks to do further research.
Tired of waiting, Flatley asked Bamboozled for help.
We reviewed Flatley’s timeline, credit card statements and other documents, and we reached out to Wells Fargo and Aon for help.
Wells Fargo said it would review the case, but it didn’t report any updates back to us.