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Press Releases

August 28, 2017
Roberts v. Capital One Financial Corporation alleges bank misled customers; Capital One’s practice of multiplying overdraft fees harms low-income customers, drives people from banking system WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Center for Responsible Lending (CRL), National Consumer Law Center (NCLC), and New Economy Project filed an amicus brief in Roberts v. Capital One Financial Corporation, in support of the plaintiff, Tawanna M. Roberts, against Capital One’s misleading overdraft fee practice. In the brief, submitted earlier this month, the group urged the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second...
August 24, 2017
New CFPB rule would restore Americans’ right to take banks to court WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, in oral arguments before a federal appeals court, Wells Fargo will try to again stop consumers in 49 states from banding together in a lawsuit that challenges overdraft fee practices, which a California court concluded were “unfair and fraudulent.” Wells Fargo will try to use its forced arbitration clause, buried in the fine print of customer contracts, to prevent consumers from having their day in court. The case comes as a recent arbitration rule released by the Consumer Financial Protection...
August 4, 2017
Civil rights groups call for reform after CFPB data show financially vulnerable consumers still hammered by checking account overdraft fees WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released a study exposing the extent to which large banks' abusive overdraft fees drain working families' checking accounts of needed funds. The study finds that nearly 80% of bank overdraft and non-sufficient funds (NSF) fees are borne by a small portion of accounts that tend to carry low balances and have relatively low monthly deposits. For one group of hard hit consumers...
June 20, 2017
"Instead of criticizing the Consumer Bureau, the Committee should be working to ensure CFPB remains a strong agency to stop abusive financial practices." WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) sent a letter to House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) and Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) rebutting the committee's majority staff report criticizing the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB) role in investigating Wells Fargo's fraudulent account scheme. "The evidence, as publicly available prior to the issuance of the...
January 11, 2017
Today, the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) lauded a group of U.S. Senate Banking Committee Democrats for calling on Wells Fargo Chief Executive Timothy Sloan to explain the recent boost in revenue from overdraft charges and whether the increase is connected to the bank’s practice of opening fraudulent accounts. In a letter, led by U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), ranking member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, members expressed concern with reports the bank’s income from overdraft charges grew by more than seven percent between July and...
May 24, 2016
Updated estimate finds overdraft fees drain $14 billion from consumers annually, while analysis of complaint narratives finds the deck stacked against consumers. Financial institutions continue to engage in abusive overdraft practices, according to a new analysis by the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL). Each year, consumers pay nearly $14 billion in overdraft fees. If non-sufficient funds are included, the figure climbs to $17 billion. "CRL's analysis confirms that overdraft abuses continue, carrying an enormous annual price tag for consumers as a whole, and with devastating effects...
February 4, 2016
The CFPB took steps yesterday that underscore the barrier high-cost overdraft programs pose to many consumers, noting that they can lose their bank account as a result excessive fees. The Bureau urged banks to offer and encourage use of accounts with no overdraft fees, noting that while some banks already offer such accounts, many do not. Rachel Anderson, Director of Faith Affairs and the leader of CRL's work on abusive overdraft fees, said: It is difficult to imagine the impact on struggling families who have gained a foothold into the mainstream financial system through access to...
November 20, 2014
Last week, the Consumer Financial Protection hosted a field hearing in Wilmington, DE to discuss proposed regulations for prepaid cards – including how overdraft fees and other credit features should be handled on these prepaid products. Maura Dundon of the Center for Responsible Lending offered the following remarks: The CFPB's proposed rule on prepaid cards, announced at a Wilmington field hearing last week, suggests a number of critical protections that will better protect consumers who use these products. Importantly, the proposed rule would require CARD Act protections...
September 26, 2014
"This proposed regulation, in conjunction with the important efforts of our military service organizations and advocates, veteran service organizations, and responsible lenders, would help ensure that our service members and their families are as far beyond the reach of financial exploitation as possible." Department of Defense, Press Release, September 26, 2014 Today, the Department of Defense released proposed rules to further protect service members and their families from predatory lending practices. Below is a summary of the changes. For more information or to speak with an...
September 24, 2014
This week, CitiBank became the latest in a band of banks to unveil a new checking account – one without checks or overdraft fees. This move not only underlines the rapidly declining use of checks – but also awareness about the harmful financial effects bank fees have on consumers, especially economically vulnerable consumers. Rachel Anderson of CRL comments: Excessive and unpredictable bank fees have a punishing impact on financially vulnerable Americans. These fees can drain accounts and family wealth – and push some families out of the banking system entirely. Of these fees,...

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