Unfair Bank Practices Lawyers
Posted On behalf of Pfeifer Morgan & Stesiak on Aug 31, 2021 in Consumer Protection
Many consumers put their trust in banks and other financial institutions to protect their hard-earned money. Unfortunately, this trust can sometimes be violated when these institutions put their own profits and interests ahead of their account holders. If you have been the victim of a bank’s unfair practices, you may be able to take legal action to pursue compensation for any damages suffered.
Our unfair bank practices lawyers at Pfeifer, Morgan & Stesiak are ready to offer legal assistance. We are well-versed in the law related to unfair and fraudulent bank practices and have the knowledge, experience and resources to take on these institutions.
Contact us today to find out more about your rights and potential legal options during a risk-free, zero-obligation consultation. This initial meeting is confidential and there are no upfront fees for our services.
Call us today at (844) 678-1800
How Do I Know If I Have a Case?
This is something you should discuss with an experienced lawyer. Our consumer protection lawyers will not know whether you have a valid case until we first review your situation at no cost or obligation to you.
Some questions we may pose include:
- Has your bank charged you hidden fees?
- Were unauthorized charges made to your account?
- Did your bank misrepresent or illegally increase your interest rates?
- Was a new account opened without your consent?
- Did your bank fail to post payments or deposits on time?
- Were funds transferred between accounts without your approval?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you may have legal cause to recover compensation for your losses. An unfair bank practices lawyer is ready to answer any questions you may have and guide you through the legal process. We are available anytime, day or night, to take your call.
Can Hiring a Lawyer Help Me?
When a bank engages in unfair practices, it can cause serious harm to consumers. Banks are businesses and they are motivated by their profits, even if those profits come at the expense of those who trust them with their money.
If this has happened to you, it is important to know how to protect yourself. Hiring a lawyer can be beneficial to you in many ways. He or she can help you file a complaint against the bank on your behalf.
Taking legal action will require gathering sufficient evidence to prove that the bank was conducting illegal activity. A lawyer can help you gather bank statements and other necessary documentation to build a strong case for compensation. Unlike the bank, he or she will have your best interests in mind.
For example, our attorneys may be able to include your case in a class action lawsuit, as many others may have been harmed by the same financial institution in a similar way. We can discuss the benefits of a class action in a free consultation.
At Pfeifer, Morgan & Stesiak, we believe that banks and other financial institutions should be held accountable for unfair and fraudulent practices. Our licensed attorneys are ready to protect your rights.
Call (844) 678-1800 to see how we may be able to help.
Recovering Financial Compensation
When banks are in violation of the law, financial compensation may be available to affected parties. The amount of compensation you may be able to recover will vary on a case-by-by basis. Generally, it may involve a bank providing reimbursement for unauthorized charges, overdraft fees and late fees.
A bank may even be required to pay your attorney fees once your case has been resolved or settled. Our unfair banking practices attorneys are ready to seek maximum compensation for your damages.
Am I Able to Sue the Bank?
Many consumers – largely unknowingly – agree to arbitration clauses in the fine print of contracts with banks and other financial institutions. These clauses can limit the ability to sue. In most cases, consumers are asked to attend arbitration to settle disputes.
We are ready to look at the facts of your case to determine whether you may be able to sue your bank or if it entering arbitration is the best way to resolve the dispute.
However, it may still be possible to sue the bank in small-claims court or through a class action lawsuit. Aside from taking legal action, you may be able to obtain financial relief by filing a complaint with a government agency and voicing your concerns about the bank or institution.
Filing a Complaint Against a Bank
If you think that a bank has been unfair or misleading, you can file a complaint with the Federal Reserve. The Federal Reserve is responsible for ensuring that financial institutions comply with applicable laws to protect the rights of consumers. The agency can help individual consumers in one of two ways:
- Answer any questions regarding banking practices
- Investigate complaints about specific banks
The complaint is forwarded to the appropriate federal regulator for that bank or institution. The bank involved with be asked for information and records related to your complaint. The Federal Reserve will then determine if the bank’s response addresses your concerns before informing you of its findings.
The agency may ask you for additional information to help complete its investigation, which generally takes about 30 to 60 days. If you readily comply, you should get a response more quickly.
At Pfeifer, Morgan & Stesiak, we are familiar with many federal laws and regulations and how they may apply to your situation, including but not limited to:
- Section VII. Unfair and Deceptive Practices of the Federal Trade Commission Act
- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Unfair, Deceptive, or Abusive Acts or Practices
Unfair and Fraudulent Bank Practices
Banks and other financial institutions often use a variety of unfair and fraudulent practices to maximize profits to the detriment of their account holders, such as:
- Charging hidden fees – Tacking on undisclosed fees to make a balance transfer, maintain an account, take out a cash advance or another type of transaction
- Assessing unauthorized charges – Charging for services or products that were not requested or approved by the account holder, such as a bank adding charges for a payment protection plan
- Misrepresenting interest rates – Not disclosing the actual annual interest rate or APR
- Failing to post payments or deposits – Account holders are charged late fees despite the bank taking too long to post payments or deposits
- Illegally increasing interest rates – Changing APRs without adequate or proper notification
- Opening unauthorized accounts – Secretly opening accounts without the account holder’s consent that then accrue bogus fees
- Transferring funds illegally – Funds are transferred or moved between accounts without the account holder’s approval or knowledge
- Running bait-and-switch schemes – Luring consumers in with a bank offer or service and then switching this offer or service for an inferior or pricier one
Need Legal Help? Call (844) 678-1800 to get started.
Potential Consequences Involved
The potential consequences that a bank may face if accused of unfair practices include:
- Consumer reimbursements
- Operational expenditures to remediate issues
- Financial losses
- Reputational damage
- Legal actions
- Enforcement actions, including civil money penalties
Settlements Reached for Unfair Bank Practices
There have been several well-known banks that have recently paid hundreds of millions of dollars to settle claims of unfair and fraudulent practices. These institutions include:
Wells Fargo – $3 Billion Settlement
Wells Fargo agreed to pay $3 billion after the bank was found engaging in fraudulent sales practices for over a decade. The institution was charging millions in fees for bank accounts, debit cards and other products that their account holders did not ask for or need. These illegal practices were being committed by thousands of Wells Fargo bank employees to meet unrealistic sales goals.
Deutsche Bank – $130 Million Settlement
Deutsche Bank agreed to pay over $130 million to resolve claims of fraudulent practices, more than $1.2 million of which will be used to compensate the victims. The institution was running schemes, hiding payments, falsifying bank records and not being transparent with consumers and businesses.
TD Bank – $122 Million Settlement
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau reached a settlement with TD Bank for illegal overdraft fee practices. The institution was enrolling account holders into their overdraft program without approval or knowledge and then charging overdraft fees for ATM and credit card transactions. TD Bank agreed to pay $97 million in restitution to about 1.42 million victims and $25 million as a civil penalty.
Get the Legal Help You Need Today
If you have been the victim of unfair practices by a bank or another financial institution, reach out to our unfair bank practices lawyers for legal help. We advocate for consumers harmed by entities that put their own profits and interests above those of their account holders.
Our initial consultations are 100 percent free and confidential. There is no risk in calling us to learn more about your rights and no obligation to take legal action with our firm. We only get paid if you do.
Talk to a licensed lawyer today. Ph: (844) 678-1800