The TCPA lawsuit was filed by Kenisha Cross in 2015, on behalf of users or scribers who received autodialed or prerecorded calls from Wells Fargo related to overdraft of deposit accounts during the class period. Cross alleges that within approximately a month of purchasing a new cellphone number, she received at least six calls from Wells Fargo, despite Cross telling Wells Fargo she was not the individual they sought.
After the second phone call, Cross told Wells Fargo to take her off their call list. Wells Fargo continued the phone calls even though Cross had no existing relationship with the bank.
"In light of the frequency, large number, nature, and character of the calls, Defendant placed its calls to Plaintiff's cellular telephone number by using an automatic telephone dialing system," the lawsuit alleges.
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), regulates how and when businesses can contact consumers, including restricting how automated telephone devices are used. According to the TCPA, an automatic telephone dialing system is equipment that has the capacity to store or produce telephone numbers to be called, using a random or sequential number generator, and has the capacity to dial such numbers. The act makes it illegal to call - other than for emergency purposes or with the express consent of the call recipient - any telephone number assigned to a cellular telephone service.
Companies that are found to have violated the TCPA could be charged $500 per phone call and up to $1,500 for calls that willfully break TCPA rules.
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According to court documents filed by the plaintiff, Wells Fargo will create a settlement fund of around $30 million, from which each class member will be entitled to a share.
In August, the court gave preliminary approval to the lawsuit, having found it reasonable, fair, and adequate. Final approval could be granted in early 2017.
The lawsuit is Cross v. Wells Fargo Bank NA, case number 1:15-cv-01270, in US District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division.