Here We Go Again! Latino Wells Fargo Employees Accuse Bank Of Anti-Latino Bias In A Predatory Lending Scheme

Latino Wells Fargo EmployeesA group of current and former Latino Wells Fargo employees has filed a federal lawsuit against Wells Fargo. The employees from the company’s bilingual mortgage sales team are alleging race-based discrimination. 

The suit alleges: 

“Wells Fargo forces its employees on the Bilingual team to offer predatory lending options to Spanish-speaking customers. For example, Wells Fargo has developed an ‘Earn the Business’ program for the Bilingual team. In the fall of 2022, management created a mandatory Bilingual team program whereby employees were instructed to offer a ‘Refinance Cash Out’ product without directly mentioning the substantial financial cost of the product to borrowers.”

The lawsuit also says that the company’s management team implemented this policy. Management introduced the policy because refinancing can come with high closing costs that range between $5,000 and $10,000 dollars.

The lawsuit also alleges:

“Managers of the Bilingual team directed employees to steer customers away from Home Equity Lines of Credit (HELOC), which carry no closing costs, and into refinancing without disclosing the closing costs,” 

Members of the bilingual team expressed concern about the policy to management. They claim the lack of providing Spanish-language materials to Spanish-speaking customers created a barrier to fully understand the documents they’re asked to sign.

The complaint also alleges the company has issues with institutional racism and discrimination. 

“Despite frequent requests, Wells Fargo refused to allow the Bilingual team (which is composed entirely of Hispanic employees who are from Mexico) to join the Pilot program. Only members of the English-only team were permitted to join the Pilot program. Wells Fargo’s policy constituted intentional discrimination against Hispanic employees from Mexico.”

Members of the bilingual sales team allege they suffered a disparate financial impact particularly after higher rates generally drove mortgage business down nationally.

The suit cites previous reporting by Bloomberg showing that Wells Fargo rejected half of its Black applicants in 2020. Lawyers for Wells Fargo and for borrowers told a judge in June they are working with a retired federal judge’s mediation service. They want to resolve lawsuits alleging widespread discrimination.

The bank paid a $3.7 billion fine in December over an array of violations.

Also, check out more Wells Fargo stories on MFI-Miami:

CFPB Spanks Wells Fargo With Yet Another Fine

Wells Fargo Pulls The Plug On Mortgage Lending

Another Wells Fargo Criminal Investigation Begins

Wells Fargo Was The Willy Wonka Of Booze, Drugs & Sex

Wells Fargo Created A Decade Of Hell For Michigan Homeowner

WF Consumer Lending Chief Fired For Diarrhea Of The Mouth

The Cattiness Of Wells Fargo Executives Rivals The Ladies From Dynasty

Wells Fargo Forecloses On Old Couple Who Sold Their Home 21 Years Ago


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