Bank of America could pay $800 million to settle allegations by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) that it encouraged customers to sign up for ancillary credit card products. A significant portion of the settlement money would be returned to customers. It would be the largest federal settlement with a card issuer over add-ons and the fifth such agreement that the CFPB has reached with a credit card provider.
Credit card add-ons include identity-theft protection and debt cancellation in case of a job loss, but the CFPB and other government agencies say issuers have misled consumers about the products. Companies marketed them aggressively, saying they could protect cardholders from identity theft or cancel debt in an emergency. Federal officials, however, say the products offer consumers little financial benefit and are often marketed deceptively.