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September 23, 2010

ANZ faces $50m lawsuit on bank, card fees

The group lawsuit against ANZ was filed in Melbourne on behalf of 27,000 of the banks customers looking to recover fees related to overdrawn credit card and bank accounts, late credit card payments and charges for insufficient funds paid over the past six years

By Verdict Staff

Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ANZ) is being sued by customers looking to recover approximately A$50 million in bank charges.

The group lawsuit against ANZ was filed in Melbourne on behalf of 27,000 of the bank’s customers looking to recover fees related to overdrawn credit card and bank accounts, late credit card payments and charges for insufficient funds paid over the past six years.

The class action is being supported by Australian litigation funder IMF Australia as part of a bid to recoup as much as A$5 billion from 12 different banks.

Maurice Blackburn Lawyers will ask the court to place the lawsuit on its “fast-track” list, IMF said.

Melbourne-based ANZ plans to defend the legality of the fees, the bank confirmed in a statement.

“We recognise these fees were unpopular,” said Philip Chronican, the bank’s chief executive officer. “It’s a big leap however for a fee to go from being unpopular to being unlawful.”

“Charging these exceptional fees is illegal and the bank’s conduct was unfair,” said Bernard Murphy, Maurice Blackburn’s chairman.

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