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BofA backpedals on $5 debit fee

BofA Sign-RTS-Lucas Jackson
Bank of America plans to make it much easier for customers to dodge its planned $5 monthly fee for debit cards, a person familiar with the bank's strategy says.

The $5 fee, which has triggered a storm of criticism, isn't going away. But under proposed revisions to the plan, "most of our customers won't pay it," according to the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the changes haven't been finalized.

Bank of America initially had said it would waive the fee only if a customer had a BofA mortgage or $20,000 in accounts at the bank and its Merrill Lynch brokerage.

It's now planning on lowering the minimum balance requirement significantly, although the final figure hasn't been set. Customers also would be able to dodge the charge by using BofA credit cards or making certain direct deposits.

The bank is going to start charging the debit card fee at a yet-to-be-determined time next year.

RELATED:

Chase opts out of debit-card fee

Citibank is next with a new banking fee

Survey: Debit card users may switch banks over fee

--E. Scott Reckard

Photo credit: Lucas Jackson / Reuters

 
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