California’s Highest Court Rules in Favor of Bank of America

According to Reuters, California’s Supreme Court on Monday unanimously ruled that Bank of America (BAC) need not pay a potential $1 billion or more to customers who claimed the bank illegally raided Social Security benefits to collect fees.

Plaintiffs in the class-action case had accused the largest U.S. bank of dipping into their Social Security direct deposit accounts between 1994 and 2003 to collect fees for overdrafts and other debts.

A 2004 San Francisco trial court ordered the Charlotte, North Carolina-based bank to pay $284.4 million of damages, plus up to $1,000 to each customer who suffered substantial emotional or economic harm.

The case was filed on behalf of more than 1 million customers, many of whom were elderly or disabled…

Monday’s…ruling by the California Supreme Court upheld a 2006 appeals court decision that reversed the trial court ruling.

BAC was up more than 2 percent, at mid $11 levels in afternoon trading on the NYSE.

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