WASHINGTON — Customers will now be able to file complaints about their checking and savings accounts with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The bureau said it began accepting complaints Thursday about bank accounts through its website, complaint hotline or by mail or fax. CFPB already accepts complaints about credit cards and mortgages, and had received more than 20,000 complaints as of Feb. 22.

"Deposit accounts play a critical role in the lives of most Americans, but these products and the laws governing them are complicated," Director Richard Corday said in a press release. "Consumers need someone on their side to keep banks and credit unions accountable—that is our job at the Consumer Bureau."

CFPB expects that complaints will fall into five main categories: opening, closing or managing an account; deposits and withdrawals; using a debit or ATM card; making or receiving payments and sending money to others; and problems related to low account funds.

In a blog post Thursday Cordray also outlined several changes to the bureau's website intended to improve complaint filing process for consumers.

Banks are expected to respond to complaints within 15 days, and to close all complaints within 60 days.

CFPB began taking complaints about credit cards last July, and began handling mortgage complaints in December. The main complaints about credit cards relate to customer confusion, third-party fraud and factual disputes between the customer and card issuer, while the top mortgage complaints relate to foreclosures, CFPB said.

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