Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.
On December 20, 2022, the Bureau issued an order against Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., which is a national bank headquartered in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Wells Fargo is the third largest bank in the United States, with nearly $1.8 trillion in assets, and the largest provider of consumer financial products. The Bureau identified multiple violations across several of the bank’s largest consumer product lines, which led to billions of dollars in financial harm and, in thousands of cases, the loss of customers’ vehicles and homes. Specifically, with respect to auto loan servicing Wells Fargo engaged in unfair acts and practices in violation of the Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010 by incorrectly applying consumer payments; charging borrowers incorrect fees, interest, or other amounts; wrongly repossessing borrowers’ vehicles; and failing to refund consumers who had paid certain fees upfront to automobile dealers when warranted. Wells Fargo also engaged in unfair practices by improperly denying mortgage loan modifications, miscalculating fees and other charges, and assessing unwarranted charges and fees. With respect to deposit accounts, Wells Fargo: unfairly froze multiple consumer accounts in instances of suspected fraud when lesser restraints were available; made deceptive claims as to the availability of waivers of monthly service fees; and unfairly charged overdraft fees even if the consumer had enough funds available in their account to cover the amount of the transaction at the time they made it. The order requires Wells Fargo to come into compliance with federal consumer financial law, pay more than $2 billion in consumer redress, and to pay a $1.7 billion penalty.