ALERT! Wells Fargo Sued for Allegedly Opening Unauthorized Customer Accounts: 3 Things You Can Do


Senior Attorney; Manager, Financial Services Program


We support reforms to the financial marketplace that protect consumers from unscrupulous banks and lenders.

By Christina Tetreault on Friday, May 8th, 2015

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The Los Angeles City Attorney (Mike Feuer) on Tuesday filed a civil lawsuit against Wells Fargo alleging the bank opened up savings and checking accounts and issued credit cards in customers’ names, without authorization.  The lawsuit further alleges that Wells Fargo failed to inform customers of the alleged misuse of their personal information and did not refund fees to customers for unwanted services.

Why did this happen?  The lawsuit alleges that it was Wells Fargo’s quota-based business model that pressured its staff to push customers into additional products that were not wanted, needed and in some cases not authorized.

The result?  Consumers have suffered in numerous ways, according to the lawsuit:  They lost money to monthly service fees charged for unauthorized accounts; customer accounts are sent to collection agencies pitting innocent customers against debt collection agencies collecting fees charged by Wells Fargo on unauthorized accounts; customers’ credit reports are affected impacting job applications and loans; customers are forced to purchase costly identity theft protection to help avoid further harm.

News reports suggest that the practice may be more widespread than just the Los Angeles area.

If you are a Wells Fargo customer, here’s what this could mean for you:

Los Angeles City Attorney Feuer is asking all Wells Fargo customers to review their account activity carefully for any red flags indicating suspicious activity by the bank.  Ask yourself:

  • Have unauthorized savings and checking accounts been opened in your name?
  • Have accounts you’ve closed stayed open?
  • Have you received debit or credit cards you didn’t request?
  • Has a line of credit been opened that you didn’t ask for?
  • Have you been charged fees for any of these unauthorized activities?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, here are three things you can do today:

1) Call and report the discrepancies to the City Attorney’s dedicated hotline: 213-978-3393

2) Share your story with us here.

3) Complain to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau through this link: or contact the CFPB at (855) 411-CFPB (2372), TTY/TDD (855) 729-CFPB (2372) during the hours of 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. Eastern, Monday–Friday.  Help is available in 180+ languages.


4 responses to “ALERT! Wells Fargo Sued for Allegedly Opening Unauthorized Customer Accounts: 3 Things You Can Do”

  1. Nessa says:

    Report them to BBB Better Business Burial. Also, you can look into getting a lawyer to fight this as well. However, I believe there are many Law firms who are taking clients towards this.

  2. M Jefferson says:

    I received a Wells Fargo Credit Card I didn’t request

  3. Santos I Lira says:

    My husband rec’d a credit card with a small credit line back in 2008 from Wells Fargo. He charged approximately $2,000 in charges then lost one of his benefits. In 2012 Wells Fargo filled a Judgement against him for $6,000. They never tired to even help him develop a payment plan. He recently attempted to make a settlement arrangement. They told him he would need to pay 481.00 per month for five years. That would be well over 20,000. He only used 2,000. Is there anyway you can help him. He was from California but now lives in Texas. His credit has been affected drastically as a result of this Judgement. He suffers from PTSD and does not need this. If you can, please help.

    • Michael Shirley says:

      I received a Wells Fargo card I did not request as well! Today.
      ALSO: my online log in info was changed! I did not do it!
      And I asked to have the account closed 10 days ago. They did not. It has a O balance. Then I found out 8.91 was added!
      Who do I report this to OTHER THAN WELLS FARGO. CRIMINALS!

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