Nearly half of the 2 million Wells Fargo bank accounts that were opened without the customers’ knowledge or consent are here in California. A new, narrowly tailored bill in the state legislature would give those fraud victims some additional leverage to fight back.
State Senator Bill Dodd says his SB 33 was written, in part, to open the way for class action suits by the defrauded customers of Well Fargo Band.
SB 33 is so narrowly written that is may never apply to any case other than the recent Wells Fargo faud, observes Valerie Higgins, a retired judge in Marin County who now teaches law and government. The language of the law applies only when a financial institution has committed fraud AND abused the customer's personal identity information in doing so. Higgins says an earlier version of the bill had the word "or" in place of that "and" which would have made the law stronger.