Advisors have reported 45-minute wait times on the phone and weeks-long delays on service tickets, among other service problems with TD Ameritrade and its new parent, Charles Schwab, in recent months.
The issues were apparently first raised in a tweet Thursday by Michael H. Baker, a manager and founding member of Vertex Capital Advisors in Fort Mill, South Carolina, and reported by Wealth Management on Friday.
Serious question- has service from @TDA4advisors fallen off a cliff…
Or is it just me?
— Michael H. Baker, CFP®, CIMA® (@MichaelHBaker) January 22, 2021
In a tweet that followed that day, Baker said he “caught a mistake today that quite frankly could have gotten me fired… totally not my fault, but doesn’t matter.”
Baker didn’t get into specifics on Twitter. But in an email on Monday, he told ThinkAdvisor the decline in service has “been going for a little while now [but] I probably began to notice more since the merger with Schwab” that was completed in the fall. “I would say the last 2 months or so have been the most noticeable.”
The mistakes he experienced were mostly service-related ones as opposed to technical issues, including “form ambiguity” and a lack of follow-up from TD Ameritrade. An error in TD-processed automated savings instructions “was the specific instance that prompted my tweet,” he said, explaining: “Frustration had been building for a while, though.”
There were other issues he experienced, but “I don’t wish to discuss specific issues as [they] may potentially be tied to clients,” he told ThinkAdvisor.
TD management had “reached out” to him “but we have not been able to connect,” he said, adding: “I do plan to speak with them and share my concerns.”
It was not just Baker who had issues with TD Ameritrade. Several advisors responded to his tweet, saying they, too, experienced problems in recent months. Some also complained of service problems with Schwab.
“Things are beyond absurd with Schwab,” Michael Brown, principal at The Planning Group in Northfield, Illinois, tweeted Friday.