Navajo Nation Sues Wells Fargo Claiming The Bank Targeted Native Americans Using Predatory Sales Tactics
The Navajo Nation has filed a federal lawsuit against Wells Fargo. The tribe is alleging that Wells Fargo preyed on elderly tribal members.
The Navajo Nation alleges Wells Fargo opened unauthorized bank accounts and debit cards. The tribe also alleges Wells Fargo pressured elderly people to enroll in services they did not need.
Navajo Nation said in its complaint:
Under intense pressure from superiors to grow sales figures, Wells Fargo employees lied to Navajo consumers, telling elderly Navajo citizens who did not speak English that in order to have their checks cashed, they needed to sign up for savings accounts they neither needed nor understood.
In addition, the Navajo Nation also alleges Wells Fargo employed “unlawful sales practices” against tribal members between 2009 and 2016.
Wells Fargo has five branches across the Navajo Nation. The bank is also the predominant provider of banking services.
Wells Fargo said it couldn’t comment on details regarding pending litigation. However, the bank did say:
Over the past year, we have taken significant steps to make things right for our customers, including members of the Navajo Nation.
The Navajo Nation Isn’t The First To Sue Wells Fargo
Wells Fargo’s aggressive sales practices first attracted scrutiny in September 2016. The bank was forced to fire 5,300 workers for creating fake accounts. In August, Wells Fargo said it had uncovered 3.5 million potentially fake bank and credit card accounts.
As a result, the company agreed to a $142 million national class action settlement. The CFPB also levied a $185 million fine.
The bank seems to face new scandals every day. Wells Fargo has also admitted that it’s mortgage borrowers were charged inappropriate fees.
A Wells Fargo bank teller admitted to stealing $185,000 from a homeless man’s account in September.
The bank also came under fire for signing up customers for insurance policies they didn’t want.
Two years ago, disabled veteran Donald Manning sued Wells Fargo. He claimed Wells Fargo breached their mortgage contract by failing to provide pertinent details about his mortgage.