By Chris Bruce
April 4 — The U.S. Supreme Court April 4 turned away a Wells Fargo plea to review class-action questions in connection with a $203 million award for plaintiffs who said the bank misrepresented overdraft fees.
Wells Fargo filed its petition in April 2015, asking the justices whether federal courts may certify classes and award monetary relief to all class members in a Rule 23 action “even though the class includes individuals who were not harmed by the challenged conduct and could not have prevailed in an individual action.”
The case originally was distributed for the court's Sept. 28, 2015, conference, but was affected by several class-action rulings by the court. The case was most recently distributed for conference again April 1.
The justices' refusal to hear the case closes a long-running battle brought by consumers who challenged overdraft fees charged by the bank. After a district court awarded them $203 million, Wells Fargo appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
The Ninth Circuit held for the bank, saying federal law preempts claims by Veronica Gutierrez and others who said the bank generated additional overdrafts — and the ensuing fees — by posting large-dollar debits before small-dollar transactions.
On remand, the district court upheld the award, but on a different basis, saying the bank misled consumers by leading them to believe that processing would be done on a chronological basis when in fact it was not .
The Ninth Circuit generally upheld the decision in an unpublished Oct. 29, 2014, ruling.
Wells Fargo did not immediately respond to a request for comment April 4.
To contact the reporter on this story: Chris Bruce in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.org
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Seth Stern at email@example.com
The Ninth Circuit's 2014 ruling is at http://www.bloomberglaw.com/public/document/Gutierrez_v_Wells_Fargo_Bank_NA_589_Fed_Appx_824_9th_Cir_2014_Cou/1.
All Bloomberg BNA treatises are available on standing order, which ensures you will always receive the most current edition of the book or supplement of the title you have ordered from Bloomberg BNA’s book division. As soon as a new supplement or edition is published (usually annually) for a title you’ve previously purchased and requested to be placed on standing order, we’ll ship it to you to review for 30 days without any obligation. During this period, you can either (a) honor the invoice and receive a 5% discount (in addition to any other discounts you may qualify for) off the then-current price of the update, plus shipping and handling or (b) return the book(s), in which case, your invoice will be cancelled upon receipt of the book(s). Call us for a prepaid UPS label for your return. It’s as simple and easy as that. Most importantly, standing orders mean you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you’re relying on. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.960.1220 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Put me on standing order at a 5% discount off list price of all future updates, in addition to any other discounts I may quality for. (Returnable within 30 days.)
Notify me when updates are available (No standing order will be created).
This Bloomberg BNA report is available on standing order, which ensures you will all receive the latest edition. This report is updated annually and we will send you the latest edition once it has been published. By signing up for standing order you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you need. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.372.1033, option 5, or by sending us an email to email@example.com.
Put me on standing order
Notify me when new releases are available (no standing order will be created)