Terrell Marshall Law Group PLLC partnered with Schlanger Law Group LLP to file a class-action lawsuit in response to numerous TD Bank fraud claims. The bank was charged with violating several sections of the Federal Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA). The lawsuit–which was filed in federal court in the Eastern District of New York–is demanding actual, statutory, and treble damages for the victims of TD Bank’s unlawful practices.
The named plaintiffs are TD Bank customers who received fraudulent phone calls from a scammer. Two of the three named plaintiffs received a call from someone who claimed to be a representative from TD Bank. The victims had recognized the phone number as a TD Bank number (now believed to be a caller ID spoof) and trusted the scammer when he told them the bank had detected fraudulent activity in their accounts.
The scammer asked each victim to share their account information in order to reverse the transaction and protect their account. Once the scammer had this information, he transferred money out of the victims’ accounts. The victims then realized this was a scam and promptly contacted TD Bank and the police.
The third named plaintiff fell victim to a similar scam in which the scammer claimed to be an Amazon customer service representative calling to assist in a refund. This situation also qualified as TD Bank fraud because the third victim’s financial account was held at TD Bank.
The lawsuit is filed against TD Bank for failing to follow several EFTA guidelines meant to protect bank customers from fraud. The EFTA generally protects consumers against unauthorized electronic transfers, requiring the bank to credit back the funds that are withdrawn by scammers without the consumer’s permission.
The principal allegation in the class action surrounds the bank’s claim that the transaction was authorized because the victims had provided the scammers with information necessary to access the account. TD Bank suggested that by giving this information out, even to a scammer, the victims authorized the transactions. However, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has clearly stated that a transfer is considered unauthorized when the transfer is “initiated by a person who obtained the access device from the consumer through fraud or robbery.” Official Interpretation of the Regulation E, regarding 12 C.F.R. 1005.2(m).
Because the transactions were not actually authorized, the bank is required by the EFTA to refund the money stolen from every TD Bank fraud victim involved in the class action.
TD bank also failed to follow EFTA requirements once fraud had been detected. Banks must provide notice to customers of which materials and documents the bank used to determine that the transaction was authorized. Not only did TD Bank fail to supply the victims with these materials, but it failed to inform the victims of their right to receive these materials.
Schlanger Law Group and Terrell Marshall Law Group created the Financial Justice Initiative to combine their extensive experience and passion for protecting consumers nationwide. Together they enforce state and federal consumer protection laws and protect consumers from scammers and fraud just like the victims of the TD Bank fraud case.
The two law firms have recently teamed up to file several class actions around the country focused on violations of the Electronic Fund Transfer Act that harmed victims of identity theft and impersonation scams as well as other related situations.
If you believe that you may also be a victim of the scam described above (or a similar scam), please do not hesitate to contact us.