Ent Credit Union Reaches Settlement in Overdraft Fee Lawsuit
Ent Credit Union and attorneys representing some of its members have mutually agreed to a settlement of a class-action lawsuit entitled Nelson, et al. v. Ent Credit Union, filed March 4, 2019 in the District of Colorado. The terms of the agreement are confidential, but it will involve refunds to impacted members of all the identifiable overdraft fees and insufficient funds fees (“NSF Fees”) raised in the lawsuit, an action all parties felt was in the best interest of Ent Credit Union members. The excess overdraft fees and NSF Fees were primarily caused by software issues that were unknown to the Colorado Springs-based credit union until the lawsuit was filed.
“Our goal is to always do right by our member-owners,” said Chad Graves, chief executive officer. “We are truly sorry for the inconvenience this has caused our members and are grateful to both our members and their attorneys for bringing it to our attention. While we believe our member agreement allowed for the charges in question, the way the fees were assessed isn’t consistent with our values, nor were they policies we would have ever intentionally created. That’s why we are refunding all the fees in question, plus interest to members affected over the course of the past three years.”
According to Ent, the charges resulted from two primary sources which Ent only became aware of through this process. The first is a default hold setting in its core transaction system software. This setting allowed for non-PIN, signature-approved debit card transactions to result in a courtesy pay charge although the account was positive at the time the member made the debit card transaction, but negative when it was paid by Ent.
The second issue was related to multiple attempts from merchants to collect payments owed, which could result in more than one fee for the same payment.
Ent has changed both processes to avoid future occurrences. Since the processes were modified, Ent has been conducting a thorough search of transaction data to determine all members that were impacted. Internal and external experts are continuing to assess impact, and Ent expects to contact all impacted members with refunds before the end of 2019.
Founded in 1957, for the second consecutive year Ent is ranked Colorado’s #1 credit union by Forbes. A different kind of financial institution, Ent is committed to improving members’ financial quality of life with better rates, lower fees and Ent Extras® Cash Rewards. With $6+ billion in assets, Ent serves more than 370,000 members at more than 35 convenient service centers all along the Front Range. Businesses and people (who live, work, worship or attend school) in Adams, Arapahoe, Boulder, Broomfield, Denver, Douglas, El Paso, Elbert, Fremont, Jefferson, Larimer, Pueblo, Teller and Weld counties may join the not-for-profit financial , community-chartered credit union. Ent is an Equal Housing Opportunity and Equal Opportunity Lender, insured by the NCUA.
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