Our Chicago ATM fee fraud attorneys keep an eye on consumer fraud litigation around the U.S. That’s how we discovered a series of lawsuits alleging that various ATM operators around the country committed ATM fee fraud in violation of the Electronic Funds Transfer Act. Pittsburgh law firm Carlson Lynch alleges that ATM operators failed to post a required notice about fees, in at least 12 lawsuits in Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York and Nevada. Most are proposed class actions, which means banks and ATM companies could pay up to $500,000 or one percent of their net work in each suit, if the classes are certified.
The most recent lawsuit to catch our attention was filed Oct. 13 in Rochester, NY. According to an Oct. 23 article from the Rochester Business Journal, ATM customers allege that Canandaigua National Bank & Trust Co. failed to post a notice that a fee would be charge on the outside of the machine, as the EFTA requires. The machines did have a notice provided electronically during the transaction, also a legal requirement. The purported class seeks return of the fees as well as statutory damages of up to $500,000 or one percent. Other cases have been brought against a Las Vegas company that focuses on providing ATMs to casinos and a series of banks and ATM operators in Pennsylvania and Ohio. Attorney Bruce Carlson of Carlson Lynch said his firm has already won at least one settlement of the maximum amount, but at least one of his claims has also been dismissed.
Our Illinois ATM fee fraud lawyers plan to keep a close eye on these cases as they progress. As Carlson told the Business Journal, the relevant language of the EFTA is not ambiguous about ATM operators’ duties. In order to legally charge a fee for using an ATM, the operator of the ATM must post a prominent notice of the fee’s existence and amount “on or at” the machine. It must also provide the notice on the ATM’s screen or on a paper receipt, before the customer completes the transaction and incurs the fee. Most ATM operators have no trouble meeting these requirements, but as these lawsuits demonstrate, a large handful appear to have failed. Consumers who are misled as a result are entitled to hold the ATM operator legally responsible for the extra fees and any other damages the court deems appropriate.
Based in Oakbrook Terrace and Chicago, Illinois, Lubin Austermuehle is dedicated to protecting the rights of consumers against fraud and abuses. We are proud of our strong record of recovery in consumer fraud cases, including individual cases as well as class actions from groups of consumers who fell victim to the same scam. Our Naperville Wheaton, and Aurora ATM fee fraud attorneys believe that consumers should be able to trust the businesses they patronize and work with every day, and we have more than two decades of experience rooting out frauds that violate this rule. If you believe you were misled by an ATM operator that failed to post the amount of its fee, or posted an incorrect amount, we can help. To set up a free, confidential evaluation of your case, please contact us through the Internet or call us toll-free at 630-333-0333 today.