Bank of America is the latest target of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) and The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency’s (OCC) enforcement actions regarding banking practices involving consumer accounts. Bank of America was ordered to pay $100 million to customers, $90 million in penalties to the CFPB. It must also pay $60 million in penalties to the OCC.
Bank of America was found to have engaged in the following wrongful conduct triggering an enforcement action:
- “double-dipping” on fees imposed on customers for insufficient funds
- opening accounts without consent
- withholding credit card rewards
In the enforcement action, the CFPB determined that this conduct impacted “hundreds of thousands of customers” over several years, across multiple product lines and services.
Banking enforcement actions, like enforcement actions in other industries, often trigger private litigation against the regulated entity. For Bank of America, two days after the CFPB announced its order, a putative class action lawsuit was filed against the Bank in U.S. District Court in the Western District of North Carolina, seeking among other things, compensatory and treble damages for opening accounts without customer authorization.
The following table represents large bank enforcement actions for conduct involving customer accounts, including the opening of customer accounts without customer authorization:
|DATE||BANK||CFPB FINE||OCC FINE||DOJ FINE||RESTITUTION|
|July 11, 2023||Bank of America||$90m||$60m||$100m|
|July 28, 2022||U.S. Bank||$37.5m||NA|
|January 3, 2019||USAA Federal Savings Bank||$3.5m||$12m|
|February 21, 2020||Wells Fargo & Company and Wells Fargo, N.A.||$3b (includes SEC)||$500m|
|September 8, 2016||Wells Fargo, N.A.||$100m||$35m|
Minneapolis-based Kelley, Wolter & Scott, P.A. brings deep experience serving as defense counsel in bank enforcement actions and bank litigation. Contact us to learn more.