Wells Fargo settles veterans loans lawsuit for $108M

By Danielle Haynes Follow @DanielleHaynes1 Contact the Author   |  Aug. 4, 2017 at 5:20 PM
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Aug. 4 (UPI) -- Wells Fargo on Friday agreed to pay the U.S. government $108 million to settle a lawsuit that it overcharged veterans under a federal mortgage-refinancing program.

The whistleblower lawsuit was filed by Georgia mortgage brokers Victor Bibby and Brian Donnelly in 2006, who sought to recoup money the government -- and taxpayers -- lost when those loans went into default. The loans were made under a Department of Veterans Affairs program.

Wells Fargo denies it defrauded veterans by overcharging them and the government by hiding what it was doing.

In 2011, the bank settled a similar class-action lawsuit in Georgia alleging misconduct in refinancing VA-backed loans.

"More than six years ago, when questions about fees on Veterans Administration refinance loans were raised, we resolved those concerns by improving our internal controls and made compensation available to VA customers who closed a refinance before that time," said Tim Sloan, Wells Fargo's chief executive officer. "Settling this longstanding lawsuit allows us to put the matter behind us and continue to focus on serving customers and rebuilding trust with our stakeholders. We are committed to serving the financial health and well-being of veterans, and we will continue to honor that commitment now and in the future."

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