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PNC Bank, NA pays $15M in UDAP penalties

Wilmington, DE
05/01/2018
Fine Amount: 
$15 million
Penalty Type: 
Issued by: 

The OCC has issued a Consent Order for a Civil Money Penalty of $15,000,000 paid by PNC Bank, National Association, for deficiencies in the Bank’s practices that resulted in violations of Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act, 15 U.S.C. § 45(a)(1) related to the failure to (i) waive certain fees as represented in disclosures and (ii) to provide overdraft protection transfers from a linked account within the time period represented in on-line disclosures.

The Comptroller found, and the bank neither admits nor denies that:

  1. Since at least 2001 for consumer banking customers and since 2002 for business banking customers, PNC represented in marketing and account disclosures that it would waive annual, origination, and/or overdraft protection transfer fees (collectively, “Fees”) charged to certain line of credit (“LOC”) accounts for consumer and business banking customers with qualifying demand deposit accounts (hereinafter referred to as “qualified consumer banking customers” and “qualified business banking customers”).
  2. Since at least 2001 for consumer banking customers and since 2002 for business banking customers, PNC represented in marketing and account disclosures that it would waive annual, origination, and/or overdraft protection transfer fees (collectively, “Fees”) charged to certain line of credit (“LOC”) accounts for consumer and business banking customers with qualifying demand deposit accounts (hereinafter referred to as “qualified consumer banking customers” and “qualified business banking customers”).
  3. PNC offers an Overdraft Protection Transfer Program, whereby Bank customers can avoid the standard overdraft fee by linking another Bank account (“Protecting Account”) to their deposit account for the purpose of paying overdrafts. Under this Program, customers may pay an overdraft protection transfer fee between $5 and $10 for each overdraft rather than the standard overdraft fee.
  4. Between August 2010 and April 2017, customers who used an online process to enroll in the Overdraft Protection Transfer Program and who elected to use a PNC-issued credit card as the Protecting Account were advised that the overdraft protection would become effective no later than the next business day. However, the Overdraft Protection Transfer Program could take up to three business days to be effective for these customers.
  5. In 2017, the OCC notified the Bank that the foregoing conduct constituted deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce in violation of Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act, 15 U.S.C. § 45(a)(1).
  6. PNC has initiated and has largely completed a plan to reimburse customers affected by these deceptive practices and is taking appropriate remedial actions to fully address and correct the violations of law.

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