Patriot Act

I dare you to try it.  With nothing but an email forwarding address, no real property, no “residence” address, and no documentation to prove that you even exist.  Then try to open a bank account or get a credit card.

Travelling in an RV we have no physical address, only a mailing address.  We own no real property.  We had arranged for a “contact address”, even though we’ll never be contacted using that address, which according to the Patriot Act meet’s its requirements.  We go to our online brokerage account, trying to open banking account(s) attached to our brokerage accounts(s) and fail because they’ve not run into these circumstances before now, and we have an address which we cannot prove is ours.

After two days, we got a call today saying that they had checked out our contact address and could prove who those people are and that now all we have to do is to prove who we are.  We need to fax them photo IDs and then copies of our Social Security cards or our MediCare cards to prove who we say we are.

We had tried the process before and had been shut down.  After three days, this try, we made it.  They are mailing us forms to fill out and we need to send back scanned copies of what they need.  But, we did it.  Phew!

The manager of the Vancouver, Washington office of Scottrade had parents who had done the same thing as we’re doing.  Without that experience of his parents dealing with exactly the same things, we probably would still be struggling to accomplish what needed to be done.

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The Journey of Trish and Raquel

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