Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Bank Battle Widens; Law Firm Adds Four More Banks to Its Giant Class Action on Customer Fees

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Bank Battle Widens; Law Firm Adds Four More Banks to Its Giant Class Action on Customer Fees

Article excerpt

Byline: Greg Roberts of AAP

AFTER landing a blow on ANZ Bank, law firm Maurice Blackburn is now suing the rest of the big four banks and Citibank for slugging customers with hefty fees.

Australia's largest consumer class action got bigger yesterday when Maurice Blackburn filed proceedings in the Federal Court against Commonwealth Bank, Westpac, National Australia Bank and Citibank.

The move came 11 days after the court ruled late fees of $35 or more charged on credit cards by ANZ might be illegal.

The class action now represents 150,000 customers for claims worth almost $200 million in total.

Analysts say the amount is immaterial for the banks.

The law firm is also alleging fees imposed upon customers for overdrawn accounts, as well as honour and dishonour charges, do not reflect the actual processing cost to the banks.

Litigation funder IMF said Westpac boss Gail Kelly had admitted the $35 to $45 fees were C[pounds sterling]completely inappropriateC[yen] and the big banks had already reduced or stopped the fees. …

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