MIAMI (Reuters) - A bank in the southeast U.S. state of Florida refused to cash a check for an armless man because he could not provide a thumbprint.
“They looked at my prosthetic hands and the teller said, ‘Well, obviously you can’t give us a thumbprint’,” Steve Valdez told CNN on Wednesday.
But he said the Bank of America Corp branch in downtown Tampa, Florida, still insisted on a thumbprint identification for him to cash a check drawn on his wife’s account at the bank, even though he showed them two photo IDs.
In the incident last week, a bank supervisor told Valdez he could only cash the check without a thumbprint if he brought his wife in with him or he opened an account with them.
“I told them I neither wanted an account with them and couldn’t bring my wife in because she was nowhere close by,” Valdez told CNN.
Bank of America said in a statement cited by CNN: “While the thumbprint is a requirement for those who don’t have accounts, the bank should have made accommodations.”
Valdez said his treatment by the bank violated the U.S. Americans with Disability Act requiring institutions to provide reasonable accommodation to disabled persons.
Writing by Pascal Fletcher; editing by Todd Eastham