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Bank of America Hit With Class Action Suit Over Credit Card Fees And Charges

On November 24, 2008 a class action lawsuit was filed against Bank of America, for deliberately engaging in a course of action that led to credit card customers to be intentionally penalized even though payments were made by the due date.

The suit cites, as an example, the case of Bruce Trombley who received a credit card statement with a closing date of October 2, 2007 that indicated that a minimum payment of $248.00 was due by Saturday, October 27, 2007. Mr. Trombley went into a Bank of America branch on Saturday, October 27, 2007 at 11:44 am and made a payment of $250. Bank of America subsequently notified Mr. Trombley on his November 2007 credit card statement that he was to be charged a late fee of $39.00 and his promotional interest rate would no longer apply even though Mr. Trombley made his payment by the due date.

The second example in the suit involves the case of Ryan Sukaskas who was charged a $15 pay-by-phone fee for making his payment on the due date. He had attempted to make the payment via the Bank of America website but the site indicated that since it was the date due that a payment could not be made via the site.

Bank of America Hit With Class Action Suit Over Credit Card Fees And Charges

It is alleged that consumers have been made to pay fees, charges and higher interest rates due to breaches of MBNA, FIA Card Services, and Bank of America credit card agreement and violation of the Truth in Lending Act. The plaintiffs in this case state that Bank of America has profited from the charging of fees, other fees, charges and/or additional finance charges for payments on accounts received on the due date.

The primary issue here is if Bank of America failed to apply payments made on the day made without the imposition of additional fees and charges. Additionally it is stated that Bank of America is intentionally taken actions that are designed to increase the amount of finance charges, late fees, and other charges that customers must pay.

The other issue is that Bank of America appears to be out of compliance with the Truth in Lending act and Regulation Z of the Consumer Protection Act of 1968 that says that “A creditor shall credit a payment to the consumer’s account as of the date of receipt, except when a delay in crediting does not result in a finance or other charge…”

If you feel that you have been unfairly charged a late fee, a fee to make your payment on the due date, or have received an increase in the interest rate, even though you made your payment on the due date, you might want to contact the attorney in this case:

Peter N. Wasylyk
1307 Chalkstone Avenue
Providence, Rhode Island 02908
Telephone: (401) 831-7730
Facsimile: (401) 861-6064
E-Mail: [email protected]

Photo: James Callan

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About Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode
Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
  • Tilixtes

    I had a BoA home equity payment due on Sunday 24, so i payed on Saturday 23 with a BoA check of my a/c but i was not credited for payment till Monday 25, i was charge a late fee which is making my interest rates go up. I just don’t get it. What they expected me to withdraw cash or cash the BoA check from my a/c, then make the payment in cash money, It’s just insane! what’s the point of having checks then. can someone say Rip Off!

  • Tilixtes

    I had a BoA home equity payment due on Sunday 24, so i payed on Saturday 23 with a BoA check of my a/c but i was not credited for payment till Monday 25, i was charge a late fee which is making my interest rates go up. I just don’t get it. What they expected me to withdraw cash or cash the BoA check from my a/c, then make the payment in cash money, It’s just insane! what’s the point of having checks then. can someone say Rip Off!

  • MarineMike

    Back in April of this year I submitted a final online payment to my B of A credit card on a payday Fri, gave it the weekend to clear and then called to close my account the following Tues. I spoke with a customer service rep that was more than helpful. I was told the account was closed and that I would receive a final statement in the mail as confirmation. I never received the letter which struck me as weird but I had also just moved. It wasn’t till I was reading my credit report that I realized B of A charged me final statement daily periodic interest and has been adding interest and late fees to the account. Never in our conversation did the rep who closed my account mention that there would be daily periodical interest due. I called B of A to rectify the problem of being charged interest after the account was closed, so I thought, and was told if I didn’t specifically tell them the words “pay off and close” together, fees can and will continue to be assessed to the account. Is that legal? I am now delinquent on an account I believed was closed and my credit is being affected. I had the same situation with DELL charging me a late fee after I made a final payment on the due date. The difference is when I called and informed the gentleman that I was closing the account they waived the fee, brought the account to $0 and closed it at my request. B of A is the DEVIL!

  • june

    i believe that bank of america is a true theif…. they charged ridulous fees and if you were late they doubled and tripeled interest.. and watch out if you god forbid ask them to get your interest lowered.. they will cut your limit to a much lesser amount… its like they punish you for even asking a question…. just watch out….i would love to see this bank in a lawsuit that had to pay back all of the people they dealt with there high interest charges. i wrote obama on this subject, and i kind of think that he took some action on it…

  • Jos

    I used to work for Bank of America. I can tell you that the Pay Per Phone $15 service brought in hundreds of millions of dollars in fee revenue each year.

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      Jos,

      Thanks for the comment. Do you have any experience on the script when a customer was sold credit protection was sold or what the process was when a customer wanted to get their interest rate lowered?

      Steve

  • Cheryl Breitbart

    I have the best one yet with B of A. We have a card that we have had since 1996 and have been faithful users. In 2003 we got a call by someone from MBNA (Before B 0f A took over) to take out the credit protection. We explained that my husband was self employed and would it still work and they said yes and this would be perfect for him. They have been taking out money since 2003 on every monthly statment. Unfortunately we had to call in on September 2009 to let them know that my husbands business has really been stuggling for 7 months and that we need to activate the credit protection plan because there is no more business. As of this date they still have not put it into place, stating that he has to go down and file for unemployment and sign up with a job placement company. B of A claims they took over with whatever MBNA had in place and that the plan changed in 2005 and that there were stipulations about being self employed. When your self employed you cannot draw for unemployement. We never knew about these changes that took place in 2005. We told them we need to see proof and they have not handed it over, but just a letter stating we don’t qualify for the credit protection. We told them we have 3 other cards that had no problem putting the credit protection into place with in72 hours after we called them. Why is B of A being so difficult? Any suggestions or if there is a class action suit we would love to join it. We are determined not to give up on this one. Its either activate our credit protection plan or refund all the money that you have been collecting since 2003.

  • Mary Klages

    My October credit card payment to BOA was due on the 19th. On Oct. 2, I wrote a check for the amount due and mailed it on Oct.3. About a week after the due date I received a message stating the because of a late payment, my special offer interest rate would be lost and I would now be subject to the current rate. However, it stated I could protest this and it would be removed. Of course, I called them and it was changed back to 0% interest til next July.
    when my next statement came, I was charged $39.00 late fee. My payment was not credited until the 22nd of October. When I called to complain they removed the late fee, but said they would only do this once. I informed them that it was not late in arriving and was informed that it must have been delayed in the mail or because of the Columbus Day Holiday. I told them that I had heard such horror stories about BOA and once the account is paid I will cancel this line of credit

  • Victoria Fourkiller

    Since January of this year I have paid more than the minimum on my Bank of America Visa card. I have always paid it on line an on the due date (prior to the cut-off time) by immediate inhouse transfer from one of my Bank of America accounts to my credit account. Their customer service area states that if you transfer from one Bank of America account to your Bank America Credit Card it will be immediately posted to that account on that date. I have to call and argue with them. While they have recredited my account with the late payment fees they have increased my interest rate from 11% to 24. Has this happened to anyone else & what can be done.

  • Kathy

    Bank of America has been doing some serious damage to ours and I am sure other peoples credit scores for about the last six to eight months. We have always paid atleast the minimum amount due, send our payments as soon as we receive the statement-thus NEVER possible to be late, and have NEVER went over the credit limit. Then we get a statement and it tells us we are over the credit limit, we have acquired a $39.00 over limit fee; the payment was received late,$35.00 late fee, our bank said it cleared eleven days prior to the date due on the bill sent to us by Bank of America, Oh and then the whopper, our finance charges have gone up from 16 percent to a outrageous 26.72 percent. My husband called the bank, the customer service representative was rude and said you received a notification of this prior to the finance charges being raised and you had a option to opt out and cancel your account at the 16 percent rate. We never received this letter, and my husband said is there anything we can do to get this straightened out? Of course, here is a number to our Credit Assistance Program, they are only available between the hours of 10:00 A.M. and 4 P:M, have a lovely day and hung up on my husband. Well he called that number, explained that even if the balance was high, he was never late on a payment, and this new unnotified about finance charge has put his balance over the credit limit amount and he was being charged a late fee and an over limit fee for things he had no control of. My husband was very polite to the lady. She on the other hand, was very,very rude and told him it doesn’t matter how those charges got billed,he could either pay the fees or they can close the account and damage our credit more than it is already being damaged!! My husband said are these my only options, and she said yes, that is basically what it boils down to. He said thank you and have a nice day, I will try to pay these fees even though I do not feel this is fair to me or any other customers that may be going through this. She said goodbye and hung up on her line. We have gotten several bills like this and then last month we got a notice that they were giving us an extended time to pay and we had to bring the account under the credit limit ( mind you, it always was until they changed the finance charges). And then we noticed that the finance charge went from 26.72 to 27.24-once again without notification to us of such a change. Well we paid the minimum and a little over that-and believe it should bring us under the credit limit, but we will not know for sure of course, until we get our next statement. We have not made any purchases on this account in four or so months, and it seems now that we are being punished for not using the card with the finance charge going up again and once again without notifying us, we went back to last months bill and there was nothing about a finance charge change, we did not receive any other notification from them, so why and how is this possibly even legal? We have a vehicle financed with them too, and we have never been late or missed a payment-I cannot believe they are doing this to all of us especially after they received money from our government to assist them supposedly to protect their customers. This is really outrageous and upsetting.

  • Maurice

    Bank of America would change the due. I would get hit with late charges then they raised my interest rate which made it even harder to make the min. payment and now they are sueing me.

    No more credit ever again, I pay cash for everything now.

  • Sharon

    I have been an MBNA credit card customer since 1994. I never had any trouble with them until July 2009. I always, I sent in my payment(in full) by check 2 weeks prior to the due date. That check finally cleared my bank and was posted to my credit card account 2 days after the payment due date. I had mailed 5 other payments to various companies at the same time I mailed the Bank of America credit card payment. All the other companies posted payment within the first week after I mailed it to them. I thought it was just bad luck on my part that it curiously was received by them too late. However, when it happened the same way the next month, I was suspicious and they now say they are canceling the promotional rate and raising my interest rate. My husband applied for a Bank of America credit card in April and they immediately began posting his payment late as well.

  • John

    Just two weeks ago. Paid my credit card bill on the day it was due online. The next day I see they charged me a late fee, annual fee, then a fee for going over my limit! I make a $20 credit card payment and get hit with $99 in fees!?!?!?! This is not good business. SOMEONE needs to shut this bank down for good!!!!!!

  • TG

    My wife and I pay send our check in by mail over a week ahead of time, and for the last two months they said they received it late. These are large payments mind you. I called to complain and the customer service reps (plural mind you) 1) told me it was B of A’s fault, 2) promised a lower APR (which they then said they couldn’t give) and 3) said it was my fault, I should pay online. With all of the online issues, it sounds like B of A is just screwing with its customers to get their APR’s high and zap late fees. I was a loyal customer for many years, but this is crazy. What a horrible instituiton. No wonder they’re going broke.

  • DN

    My due date on my BOA Visa is July 5 (Sunday). I logged on and tried to make an electronic payment on July 4, Saturday, and the system would not accept the payment for July 4 or July 5. July 6 was the earliest date my payment will post, and now for the first time my payment will be late. I anticipate a late charge and an interest rate hike as a result. I’m sure they are capable of programming their system to NOT make payment due dates fall on a Saturday or Sunday, but I believe it is intentional. Also, why can’t electronic payments be accepted on weekends? It doesn’t make sense to have that be a due date and then not accept a payment.

  • http://www.fraudulentcharges.com FraudulentCharges

    We are looking for angry Bank of America customers to send us your story at FraudulentCharges.com. Whether is the horrible customer service, the outrageous fees, or something else, let us know today. These anonymous stories will be delivered to a national news source for an in depth report on how to avoid being scammed by your bank. Bank of America will finally be exposed on national television for the corruption and greed that all to many customers found out the hard way.

  • jm

    I just got off the phone with them right now over my late fee on my account< my payment was due on the 3rd, like most people i got paid on the 1st(keep in mind i never missed a payment in my life) i went home and did my bills. i went online like usual and come to find out since my due date is on the 3rd(sunday) it wouldnt let me post until monday the 4th. I thought they would be understanding, i know how it works since i work in a bank. The worst company i have ever dealt with in my life. i was ripped off, i tried walking into the brach like 6mos ago and i was assessed a late fee casue i went in there at 1pm and cutoff was 12pm.I wish i could rid of these cards,,,Is the attorney still taking any statements or complaints or to join the suit???

  • Fran

    The same thing has happened to me with Bank of America. I would pay my bill in cash at the teller on the day that it was due or even a day before. My statement would come in for the next months payment & i would get hit with a late fee. They told me in order to avoid the late fee i would need to pay it 2-3 days prior to the due date on my statement because it has to be processed. This makes no sense to me especially where i am paying cash, they should be able to post it to my account immediately. Another thing with Bank of America that I have been fighting them for over a year on is somehow i was signed up for credit protection & I have been paying this monthly charge for 4 years. I took care of my ill father for about 8 yrs & all I did when it came to paying my bills was to pay them. I did not pay too much attention to the charges. When i called them a year ago to see if I could cancell this protection they told me i could. I asked the girl why this was on my bill & she told me that it would have been something i signed up for thru a direct mailing. They cannot provide me with my signature. They are telling me by law they only have to keep my signature for 25 months which i find hard to believe. I am not the only person that this has happened to. There is a website that has quite a lot of people that are going thru the same thing. The web site is: http://credit-protection-plus.pbwiki.com/. Something has to be done to Bank of America to stop them from doing this to the consumers. The OCC & the BBB has done nothing to help

  • ab

    Bank of America did the SAME thing to me! My payment was due on a Monday – since they have a payment cutoff time that goes by EST, and I am in MST, I went to schedule my online payment on Friday morning to ensure it being on time… DAYS in advance of the due date. The online system told me that my payment could not be posted on either Friday, Saturday or Monday, but it conveniently could be scheduled for Tuesday, making my payment a day late! Naturally I thought this was a computer glitch so I called their telephone banking. The representative told me that Monday was a bank holiday, and the only way at that point that I could schedule an on-time payment was over the phone, with a $15 fee. I asked her why they would schedule due dates on a holiday, and also why they could not accept free online payments but could accept charged phone payments. The representative advised me that my only options were to pay a $15 phone fee, or wait until Tuesday and pay a $39 late fee. They were unwilling to change my due date until Tuesday. She told me that a supervisor was not available to speak with me, I asked for a return call, which I never received. She said that I could make my payment on Tuesday and then call to get a credit for the late fee. Although, come Tuesday, when my payment was ONE DAY LATE, my interest rate was set to the default. It is absurd that banks can set your due date for a day that they are unwilling to post payments!

  • ej

    bank of america keeps turning on and off my ability to bill pay. i think they do this deliberately so that i can be late on my payments and then increase my interest rate and charge me more fees after fees…. i paid so much 3 years ago and i’m finally on good standing and paying 10x the minimum amount each month and now they turned off the ability to bill pay again!!! i’ve called several times to turn it back on and they can’t… and they tell me to go to an alternate site and after several months tell me i can’t pay there but to go back to the original site. so angry thinking about how much money was spent paying back just in interest alone since that first late payment after they turned off the bill pay ability!

  • Keith Ponthieux

    Dear Mr. Peter N. Wasylyk,

    I want to join the class action suit. My situation beats all.

    In summary, I sent in a timely payment to B of A and they returned my check
    saying that they did not have enough info to credit an account. Mind you, the check was stapled to the
    tear off slip with all the info on it.

    I called the card company and had them note in my file that I paid timely as the dates
    on my check and their post marked mail prove it. I sent the check back a second time
    with a cover letter stating to which account to credit and they returned the check a second time stating
    due to lack of information as to who to credit the payment to. The morons who returned the
    check wrote my account number on the checkI

    I called the credit card company again and they said that I am required to write the account number on the check and that
    they would continue to return it until I did so. I have never put the account number on my check; I just send in the tear off stub.

    I have never had a problem like this in 20 years of using credit cards.

    I want to sue these bastards!!!!!!

    I am willing to supply all the details and copies of everything as evidence and cooperate to the fullest
    with you.

    Sincerely,

    Keith Ponthieux
    PO Box 605
    Bencia CA 94510
    707 315 4535

  • Joy

    I agree with Bank of America doing this. I had a credit card bill due one month and that due date fell on a Saturday. I tried paying online at 11am but it indicated that since it was due that day, by paying online it will not post on my account until the next business day. Fine. So I go to the nearest Bank and is closed. I called a representative and requests for me to pay so I wont be late on my payment. She states it wont matter and that fees will still be charged because I did not pay Friday, the day before my due date? So i was charged $39 late fee but a pay by phone charge of $15. I tried to dispute with a manager and she claims, she is the Manager. She had very poor attitude and did not know how to treat customers. I guess I am not the only one.

  • Debbie

    I agree with you they do increase but I got a letter today saying they was cancelling my cards and I am always on time and I called them but the lady had such bad language I could not understand it

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