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Wells Fargo to pay $575 million settlement with states

Friday, January 4, 2019  
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The Gazette 

Wells Fargo to pay $575 million settlement with states

Iowa will receive a $6.2 million share of a $575 million settlement paid by Wells Fargo Bank to resolve claims the financial institution violated consumer protection laws, affecting millions of customers nationwide.

Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller announced the agreement Friday, noting Iowa’s share of the settlement — $6,180,941.33 — will go into the state’s Consumer Education and Litigation Fund.

According to a news release from Miller’s office, the settlement with 50 states and the District of Columbia addresses claims that Wells Fargo:

• Opened millions of unauthorized accounts and enrolled customers into online banking services without their knowledge
• Improperly referred customers for enrollment in third-party renters and life insurance policies
• Improperly charged auto loan customers for force- , or lender-placed, collateral protection insurance
• Failed to ensure customers received refunds of unearned premiums on certain optional auto-finance products
• Incorrectly charged customers for mortgage rate lock extension fees.
Also as part of the agreement, Wells Fargo will create a consumer restitution review program for consumers who have not been made whole through restitution programs already in place, the statement said.

In 2016, the San Francisco-based bank agreed to pay $190 million to resolve federal claims it had generated fake customer accounts, among other improper tactics.

Miller said Iowa had joined with Arizona, Connecticut and Pennsylvania in heading the investigation.

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