Mail merge

Long delays, account issues as former National Bank, first Midwest merger

TINLEY PARK, IL — First Midwest Bank customers transitioning to the former National Bank in the midst of a merger encountered difficulties and frustrations throughout the process, with many noting hours of phone waits, missing or defective debit cards and online access problems.

The merger, publicly announced in June 2021, was first launched with First Midwest Bank customers with initial language and mailings in June 2022. When the transition was finalized on Monday, July 11, customers are found in various snafus trying to adapt.

“Combined 10 hours of waiting between Monday and Tuesday and no one was contacted,” said customer Bill Tuzich. “I’m still trying today.

Local branches of First Midwest Bank were closed the weekend before the official change, to allow time for signage changes and other updates. To prepare them for the change, First Midwest customers received welcome kits, instructions and new debit cards in late June. Some say their cards got lost in the mix or the access credentials they were given didn’t work.

“Never received my debit cards, went to bank to get them, machine was down so no debit card,” customer Chrissy Jenga said on Oak’s Facebook page Forest Patch. “I still can’t log into online banking. The poor people in the bank were trying their best…but the companies are letting them down.”

Another customer said she didn’t receive her debit card and was put on hold for over two hours.

“I sat on hold yesterday for 2 hours 17 minutes and was conveniently logged out after hours,” Amy Box posted on the Tinley Park Patch Facebook page. “I had 2 debit cards, one of my children had none. It was a bad experience with no support in place!”

Patch could not reach Old National Bank for comment, but a notice on their website informs visitors, “We are ending our partnership with First Midwest this week and wait times for our customer service teams and branch may be longer than usual” with a link to their FAQs.

“I got locked out of my account because the former national gave us the wrong instructions on how to log in for the first time,” Cindy Skala wrote on the Oak Forest Patch Facebook page.

A second notice on their website addresses customer issues with activating new debit cards or accessing online accounts using information provided in initial mailings.

“It has come to our attention that some customers are experiencing issues when attempting to activate their old Mastercard domestic debit card using the phone number included in their debit card shipment,” the notice reads. . “As an alternative, you can activate your new old National Debit Mastercard by calling 833-246-9308.”

Although few in number, some reported a smooth transition with no issues throughout the process.

Indiana-based Old National Bank now has locations in the southern suburbs including Palos Park, Tinley Park, Oak Lawn, Frankfort, New Lenox, Mokena, Crestwood, Palos Heights, Homewood, Palos Park, Orland Park, Evergreen Park, etc A full branch locator can be found online.