Bank Tellers Share the Most Heartbreaking Examples of Poor Financial Decisions That They’ve Witnessed

Managing other people’s finances has to be one of the most stressful jobs out there. Bankers at the top of the food chain may be contributing to human suffering, but what about employees in retail branches? 

They want to earn a fair wage while also contributing to the betterment of their community. It’s a sad reality, but when people screw up their finances, it’s usually the bank teller who has to break the news to them. 

It was up to the Reddit bank tellers to explain where they had gone wrong financially after they had either completely ruined or nearly ruined their financial situations due to their ignorance or the foolishness of others. This is what they said about it.

The Forgers Impersonating FBI Agents 

For about a half-year, I worked as a teller. This happened several times at my workplace. An elderly woman, possibly around 70 years old, enters the branch while talking on her cellphone. 

She approaches the counter and declares that she wishes to withdraw the $78,000 cash that is currently in her savings account. Because this raises a lot of red flags for me, I’ve started asking questions about the intended purpose of the funds. She has informed me that she will be taking a vacation to Las Vegas and will need money to gamble while there. To put it another way, $78,000 is a lot of money to spend on anything, let alone a flight.

As a result, I asked her why she didn’t wait until she arrived in Las Vegas to withdraw the funds. Even though she used the magnetic strip on her debit card to verify her identity at the beginning of the transaction, her response was “I lost my debit card.” While everything else is going on, she is still on the phone, but she has set the phone down on the counter. When I’m on the phone with him, I can hear a man’s voice saying “take it all out” over and over.

I get the woman to hang up the phone, and then I call the branch manager and the head bank teller. They then begin interrogating the woman. 

Before going to the bank, she was contacted by three men impersonating FBI agents while they were in the grocery store. They proposed to her that she participate in an undercover operation that they were running. They needed a large sum of money to conduct a transaction at the home of someone they suspected of dealing drugs. After that, agents would arrest the people who were inside the house, and she would receive her money back.  We thank our lucky stars that we were able to stop this before she could access her money. During my brief stint in the banking industry, I witnessed several instances of this. 

When the Puzzle Pieces Just Won’t Fit 

I worked for a company that serviced student loans. A woman who was having difficulty paying her $900 in student loan bills each month contacted a mutual friend. He thought it was reasonable and then inquired about her monthly earnings. 


“No, I’m talking about how much money you bring in each month,” I explained. 

“….40,000,” Effexor says. 

The Most Expensive Book in the World’s History 

I am not a bank teller, but I was present when I overheard a conversation between the teller and a customer attempting to withdraw $40,000 in cash. 

Teller: Could you please explain why you need so much money? We have no control over you doing this, but it is not something we recommend. 

The customer stated, “I need to make a payment to the Internal Revenue Service” (IRS). 

Teller: You can pay with a check if you prefer, and we can also make the necessary arrangements to wire the money directly to them. The Internal Revenue Service, from what I understand, does not want people to pay them in cash. 

Customer: That’s how I’ve been paying them since we began working together. 

Teller: How much money have you already given them? 

Client: Approximately sixty thousand dollars 

Teller: Could you please tell me how the IRS got in touch with you? 

Customer: When they arrived at my house, they informed me that I had not paid enough taxes. It is now my responsibility to repay them. 

Teller: How have you been making your debt payments? 

According to the customer, they went to meet with an IRS agent, who then took their money. 

Teller: Sir, I believe you have been taken advantage of in some way. This is not how the Internal Revenue Service would approach you about unpaid taxes… 

Customer: No, the representative always wore a badge. It was addressed to the Internal Revenue Service. 

Teller: Sir, I’m contacting our fraud specialist. I have a sneaking suspicion that you are being duped. 

Customer: How am I going to get my money back? 

Teller: I’m not sure we’ll be able to get it back. We’ll almost certainly have to involve the police in this situation, and given that you’ll be meeting the con artist in person, they might set up a sting operation. I’m afraid I can’t be of much assistance; we’ll have to consult with our fraud specialist on this. 

“Well, I want that money back now!” said the customer. Another loan is currently out of reach for me. I’ve already taken out enough money to cover my tax bill! 

Teller: We’ll get to that in a moment, but first I need you to calm down, and you should never speak with this “IRS agent” until you’ve spoken with our fraud specialist. We’ll get to that shortly. 

Client: But I just texted him to see if he was trying to defraud me! 

Tell me about the SMS you sent to him, Teller. 

Customer:I told him that the bank suspected him of committing fraud against them. Is this something I messed up? 

Teller: I have no idea. Simply put a stop to whatever you’re doing until you can speak with our fraud specialist. 

Based on his appearance, the man appeared to be in his 60s or 70s. Someone had impersonated the Internal Revenue Service to trick him into paying “back taxes” in cash right away. He’d paid for it with loans he’d taken out, and he’d withdrawn money from numerous bank branches without raising an eyebrow. When he tried to collect the next “tax payment,” his only chance was to get the cops involved and catch the con artist, but he texted the con artist and blew his cover before that could happen. His only hope was to involve the cops and catch the con artist when he attempted to collect the next “tax payment.”