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Woodforest Bank Agrees To $12 Million In Overdraft Refunds

Woodforest Bank has agreed to refund more than $12 million to consumers who were charged high overdraft fees on bank accounts. In addition, the bank will pay a $400,000 penalty to the federal Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS). It’s the toughest penalty ever imposed by OTS regarding overdraft fees, as a debate over the fees heats up. Woodforest will repay current and former customers “who were misled about the cost of overdraft protection and charged excessive overdraft-protection fees.” Woodforest’s business relied “upon an unreasonably high level of aggregate fees,” according to OTS.

The 169-unit savings bank has 35 offices in Alabama Wal-Mart stores. The savings bank’s owner, Woodforest Financial Group of Woodlands, Texas, also owns the 577-unit Woodforest National Bank. Existing and former depositors charged overdraft fees since January 2, 2008, will get refunds. Under the order, the bank must repay eligible customers by June 23rd. Customers seeking more information can call 1-877-968-7962.

Consumer advocates have been pushing for federal action to cap bank charges for a long time. Customers overdraw accounts by $20 on average but are charged higher fees, according to Jean Ann Fox of the Consumer Federation of America. She added: “They can charge astronomical interest rates for short-term cash advances, and they don’t have to quote the (rate).” Wal-Mart shoppers fit the profile of banking customers most likely to get caught in a spiral of overdraft charges (low- to moderate-income, female-headed households). It should be safe for low-balance consumers to have a bank account, according to Ms. Fox. I agree with that assessment.

Source: Al.com

89 thoughts on “Woodforest Bank Agrees To $12 Million In Overdraft Refunds”

  1. demetress winfield

    this is a scam I have been with this company since 2007 and was charge $5.00 for negative balances and $34.00 overdraft fees continually and I only received $3.00 they did not reimburse me. scam…..

  2. We have had many bad months in the past because of these overdraft fees. Including one month when we had over $300 in overdraft fees. So you can imagine my shock when we only recived $12. What can I do? My family is in a situation where we need the money now more than ever.

  3. I received mine on the 8th. I actually just opened it today. Thought is was a scam… had to look it up before I took it to the bank. 1600 dollars!!! thank goodness!!!

  4. This bank is as shady as they come! Not only do they charge outrageous fees, but they don’t provide enough information when you get your e-statements to see what some of the transactions were for. When you email them to find out more information about the transaction, they charge you $2.00. It is a vicious cycle with this bank. But the kicker is……..I bank in San Antonio at the Woodforest branch in Wal-mart on SE Loop 410 and Rigsby–and the manager took $50 out of my account without giving me any kind of notice. I pulled up the trasaction record for May 5, 2009–and the scanned copy of the debit was signed by the manager and the memo for the transaction only stated “Xfer to proper account”. This led me to believe that they had accidentally made a deposit that was supposed to be for another customer into my account. I pulled up my transaction history, and NO $50 deposit was ever placed into my account by the bank. They STOLE $50 from me. When I went to the branch in person to get more information about the transaction (on several occasions) the manager was always “unavailable”. I went to a different branch to see if anyone there could help me, and one of the other branch managers told me “very secretively” that it looks like the manager “improperly took the funds”. I asked her to please conduct an inquiry into the transaction to help me get the $50 deposited back into my account, and she said she would “take care of it.” After 4 weeks of waiting and not seeing my money, I went back to the manager who said she would help me (at the Wal-mart branch on Jones-Maltsberger in San Antonio) and she acted like she had NEVER spoken with me. She pretended to not know anything about my situation. These people are very, very shady. The customer service is awful. When you go into a branch to make a straight cash deposit, they treat you like you have to “qualify” just to put your cash in your bank. A straight deposit should never take 5 minutes. They are pulling up screen after screen, scratching their heads like they’ve never seen a straight cash deposit for $500. Needless to say, I’ve closed my account and now bank with Wells Fargo. I banked there because it was close to my house, and I shop at Wal-mart at least once a week. I thought it would be convenient, but did not realize I would be stolen from. I never did get my money back. Avoid these deceptive people at all cost.

  5. the charges on my acount as a overdraft fee 90.00 on my checking account with woodforestnational bank my attorney is working on this acct as for bank privreleges o n a claim of a identity theft settlement penalty of law commonwealth of virginia city of danville attorney at law william h young 1540-951-3740

  6. .Ialso have aclaim n chicago ill transunion credit report because of a student loan dated amt 1.00000.000 million 20.000 data settlementnotary public viable verge 50.000 countrywidedata if I could get a cash advance on my settlement tobuy a nissan maximma 434-797-1320

  7. I can send woodforestnational bank a police report defendent insurance policy documents case not on a contingency basis liabitility admitted yes or no find out from attorney i am on social security

  8. This is bank is unbelievable, I worked in wal-mart before and since the bank inside the store I open an account with them and use this bank as my primary bank and use for my bills the thing is they charge me too much when my bill came straight to my bank and not enough fund they charge my $30 plus $5 per day you didn’t fund the bank, this bank help me to be in debt, every pay check it go straight to this bank and cover the over draft plus the $5 per day so in $10 days that’s $50 huge that’s why I told myself I’m not gonna get full with WOODFOREST BANK!!! My experience with this bank is absolutely bad!!!!

  9. Gracie T. Lumpkin

    My husband and myself opened an account with Woodforest National Bank in Whitehall, Ohio in December 2010. We are in Greensboro, N.C. visiting relatives for a while so we do our banking at the branch in Wal-Mart Pyramids Village shopping plaza. Today is Wednesday June 1, 2011 and my husband went to the bank this morning and our direct deposit from Ford Motor in Ohio was only $28.00!! These people are a bunch of fraud artists and their overdraft fees are outrageous!! We were charged $380.00 in overdraft fees for 2 transactions. We are in the process of taking these crooks to court as I post this. How come these crooks aren’t prosecuted to the fullest and sent to jail? Our judicial system are crooks too so crooks always watch each others backs!! Fight for your rights people because the crooks are ruling the world!!

  10. I was supposed to receive a check but the bank took it back saying I owed them for non sufficient funds fees. I thought they were the same as overdraft fees I guess I was wrong. The bank never completed a transaction for me only deposits. Well lesson learned I guess. Woodforest bank is a joke and a big scam. Be weary when dealing with this bank.

  11. Oh yes, bunch of crooks. I received a letter saying they were ordered in a lawsuit to refund overdraft fees, but they simply credited that amount to the closed account saying it was overdrawn because of the fee they imposed on me for CLOSING THE ACCOUNT. So they only issued a refund on their paper trail, I never got a cent of the hundreds of dollars they stole from me! I would make my deposits, and they’d tell me the funds were available (per manager) and to go ahead and pay my bills…this after I’d already had many bad experiences and filed complaints with several branch managers….then 11 days later they decided no, they wanted to put holds on my deposits which had cleared the issuing checks banks the day after my deposit! I would get letters in the mail, saying they’d placed holds on my deposits (up to 15 days in many cases!) way AFTER my account had showed the deposited checks as cleared and availble for use! Then they charged me $35 dollars for every transaction I ever made through my account!
    Crooks. That’s what they are! When I called the main office in TX I was told that’s their policy and I shouldn’t have paid my bills till they said I could! I told them their own branch manager TOLD me my deposits were cleared, and they impatiently explaned that they (in the main office) had over ridden what the branch manager had noted on my account!
    I went to several different branches, talked to managers at all of them, and at one the manager even stated “it’s people like YOU who can’t be responsible with their money and bank accounts and who don’t know how to pay their bills that cause problems like this!” as she rolled her eyes at me and my complaints!
    I was incredibly happy to see they’d finally been taken to court for their actions, however even though they lost in the lawsuit, I still never got any money refunded.

  12. Why do people not do their RESEARCH before choosing their banks?? Information on banks and their business practices are easily found out about via a quick google search! Woodforest National Bank is one of the biggest crooks out there when it comes to YOUR money! I for one checked them out after a relative went to work for them, he was forced into opening an account as an employee and forced as well to pay an extravagant amount (almost $200.00) for his shirts he had to wear…one color for each day of the week.. Well I did my research as I always have in the past on other banks before placing my money into their hands and have read nothing but horror stories from their current and past employees, as well as current and past customers, yet they keep getting away with their thieving ways. Whats up with that? Why hasn’t this crooked bank been closed down and those poor customers money – ALL OF IT been returned to them- IN CASH!!?? Also, I checked the BBB but found an A rating!! Why does the BBB have so many complaints against them and yet rates them an ‘A’ just because Woodforest compensated those who made the official complaints? 86 of them I counted from customers, not including others complaints made against them, yet the BBB is rating them an A!! This is total BULL! If a company is getting so many complaints, it should be RATED as such regardless of their remedying it. I am also appalled that Walmart’s is associating itself with these people. They obviously do not care about either their EMPLOYEES getting ripped off , nor their CUSTOMERS who are being bombarded by Woodforest National Bank Employees every time they walk into or out of Walmarts!!!

    Seriously people, there are so many good banks out there you can really trust. Charles Schwab is a good one and even pays YOU interest on your checking and savings both…no min. deposit required and reimburses you all ATM fee’s no matter where you are in the world! There are other banks too that still know how to be ethical and treat their customers very well.

    We as American Consumers need to pull all our money out of these crooked banks and put OUR money- NOT THEIRS- into trustworthy hands.

    Best advice to those who have been ripped off…..DO THE RESEARCH! Don’t just give your money over to just anyone!

  13. My aunt received a notice yesterday that she would be receiving payment aswell. I am her power of attorney how do I find out this and should I get my banking records. I no longer bank with the scam artists neither does my aunt. A refund would be nice!!!

  14. Cheryl A. King

    How do I find out if I am eligible for a refund. I was once a Wood Forest customer. My address has changed in the last year, how would you find me.

  15. i have been with them for years and i am now trying to pay a debt of over draft off and they would not let me close my account and pay the amount off, had to keep open and they charge me a fee every month to kept account open. I have been charge lots of over fee of 30.00 and 2.00 draft fee. My wife tried to close the account when i went missing for a month and spent over 20,000.00 and she even called the home branch and they would not close the account and i went over 800 and some dollars. I went to rehab and went to make arrangement to make payment and they said i could not close the account and i was charge money even thou i am making my last payment in april and have made monthly payments on time, until last payment wont close. who do i contact to add my name to the law suit.

  16. Samara Washington

    I received a post card in the mail about the lawsuit and I am a former customer of Woodforest Bank. The post card stated I didn’t have to do anything. I would like to know is there a way to find out if I will be getting a refund check or if I need to contact somebody concerning this matter?

  17. patricia jackson

    When ir how do I get my money dur to all the overdrafts fees that have been charged to me over the years

  18. I banked with this bank. They kept a revolving overdraft fee on my account so long that it eventually forced me to shut it down! They would give you two different amounts for funds available if you would call the “toll free number” for your balance. This bank is beyond “shady”. They have no clue the situation they put you in when what you were depositing each month was taken by 34.00 overdrafts.They would allow you to overdraft until they figured out exactly how much money was being deposited monthly! It was incredible what cheats they are. Yes they closed my account out; Only after ripping me off and not even blinking!

  19. Cory Broadnax

    I was told that i’m a part of the lawsuit and there was supose to be a hearing on it come may 19 . I wood like to no ,when will i hear from some one.

  20. LaToya Pender

    I received a correspondence in the mail. I have also contacted the wood forest settlement line no live person to talk to. I really would like to know who we can call.

  21. anna desnoyers

    The Court entered a formal order and judgment approving the Settlement with Woodforest National Bank and Woodforest Bank. The Effective Date of the Settlement cannot yet be precisely determined, but is presently expected to occur on or around June 27, 2014. The Settlement Fund proceeds will be distributed through the issuance of an account credit or by mailed check after the Effective Date does occur.

    Copies of the final approval order and judgment are available under the Court Documents section of this website.

  22. I was named in an Ohio settlement and need to know wken to expect my check. I was told it would be in may.It is now jJune. Does anyone know the law firm handling the Ohio suit? Also I have moved so wold like to find law firm to let them Know

  23. The Wood Forest bank hot line states that a court date is yet to be determined and hot line says it should be around June 27th, but who knows when???? When it is all said and done, if you still have an account with Wood Forest, they will refund your money through that bank account. Should we trust Wood Forest????? I say we all should have our checks for whatever amount, mailed to us as this is another way we will be able to get a refund. We wouldn’t have to worry about any stealing but if they sent us a check for 3 dollars we may have to pay 5 dollars to get it cashed lol.

  24. Maria Balderas

    I bank with Wood Forest bank. How can I find out if I’m entitled to this refund on the overdrafts that have been taken from me?

  25. Adrien Council

    I am wondering how many days after the effective date will we receive a deposit or a check. I wish that they would give us more info.

  26. anna desnoyers

    how long after the 6/27/14 date will they start giving out the checks..i wish we all ,more info on this

  27. Janette Bradford

    I did talk to the attorney’s office that represented us in the class action suit and was told that disbursement will start on Monday, June 30, 2014.

  28. Connie moriatis

    You only get overdraft charges back if your fees were in the group that was charged as to the lawsuit.
    It might not be very much.

  29. If you received a card does it mean the person would be entitled to part of the settlement. I just mentioned the suite to my bank rep and they knew nothing about it. They said the only one they knew about was 2010 and it had already been paid out by them. (?)

  30. Have anybody received there settlement check yet from woodforest bank. It really don’t make any since people has waited long enough, it would be nice to something in the mail this weekend, wishful thinking.

  31. Good for you Jennifer Thomas. I am still waiting for my check. Hope everyone gets their checks soon. I have been waiting and checking the mail everyday.

  32. I want to find out if i will be getting a check…Is there a working phone number that has a live person to talk to? OR is there a website that i can find out if i will get a check ? I would really like to know.

  33. I had been in contact by email. The person I was in contact with asked for my full name and current and previous addresses. I STILL have an account there and have been a customer since 2003 and did receive a postcard, but for some reason they have no record of me.

  34. Harold G. warren

    I too received a card, I was living in Crosby, Tx at the time this all happen. I’m living in California now. How do I receive my money?

  35. Melissa Werts

    Has anyone received any checks yet??? Beginning to think this was a hoax and not real. I have sent a letter to the court that presided over this lawsuit and have not heard anything back yet.

  36. I too received a post card about being part of the settlement. I have had three accounts with Woodforest since 2005. I figured by now I would have gotten something but it would be nice if there was a way to check on status and how much. I had major issues with OD fees back then so I would assume I would receive a check and not a credit into my current account. A friend of mine did receive a $36 credit back on July 7th I believe. I haven’t seen or heard anything. I have been making the mail lady happy by clearing out my mailbox daily vs once a week or so like normal however!lol If I have not received anything by Friday of this week I will be writing a letter unless anyone has a phone number aside for the automated waste of time number that’s listed on the settlement page???

  37. I emailed the contact us section of the website for the settlement as I have had accounts with Woodforest since 2006. They informed me I would be getting a check however checks were not being mailed out till the end of July. Even though I still have a current account with them it wouldn’t be credited because the account I had od on is closed. Hope this helps others to know.

  38. nikki shireman

    I just found out that I am only getting $9.02 for two accounts I had that were closed and even though I paid one closed account off and start to pay off the other. What a rip off.

  39. This definitely helps Amiee C….Thank you for posting this information.

    And Nikki, how did you find out how much you were getting?

  40. Hello my name is Patricia I live in Ohio & I too got a post card stating I was included in a class act lawsuit, I too think Woodforest Bank is a scam & its not right all the 34.00 overdraft fees they put on us. Its not their place to pay something if we don’t have the funds in our account if we never approved of it. It got to the point where they called me & said do you want a transaction to go through? Heck after numerous transactions they put through after me complaining about the overdraft fees. They are a Big Scam. That bank got over on alot of people & made us close our accounts cause we couldn’t afford to keep up on the overdraft fee payment. thats not fair. How do we find out how much were getting & when.

  41. Patricia, I emailed the email address on the official settlement website. They emailed back this morning asking for my full name and mailing addresses (current and at the time of having the acct) so that they could look into my status. I don’t know if they will email back details or not but I will come back on here if they do and let you all know.

  42. They’ll probably get back to you. We emailed back and forth and they are claiming they have no record of me, which is curious as I still have the same account I opened back in 2003. I did receive some kind of scam email after posting about it in my Yahoo email box.

  43. I haven’t gotten anything back from this mornings email but its only been a few hours. I gave them my old account numbers (only those that are closed accts) as well assuming that I wont receive anything from the open account at this point. It would be nice to find out something. Hope you can get more information Becca. Maybe you didn’t have any OD amounts that were caused by the sequencing from largest to smallest dollar amounts and that’s why they don’t show any info???

  44. Summary of the legal rights and options of settlement class members

    The Effective Date of the Settlement was June 27, 2014. Distribution of awards via an account credit or award check is now complete. Account credits were issued on July 11, 2014, and award checks were mailed on July 25, 2014. Award checks were mailed in the form of a postcard check.

  45. I have a account with Woodforest National Bank and have been charged many overdraft fees and I got a postcard But I have not heard anything about a check or deposit in my account. What should I do?

  46. I received a check in the mail today. I completely forgot about getting the post card. I felt like queen of overdrafs with them, literally hundreds of dollars and my check is a whole 28$. It honestly looks like nothing from the outside and doesn’t even look like a real check, it’s tiny and thick.

  47. Who negotiated these terms? Really?!! Nineteen dollars. I think I want to sue counsel. We should start a class action against them. I feel like I’ve been robbed twice.

  48. Why I only got $ 9.58 & all the rich got big checks , I shouldn’t have to settle for that amount if their was a suit, because my lawer wouldn’t have settle fot $ 9.58 and I’m going to have my Lawer to find out why I should have got more.

  49. This is a big joke i only got 90$ in my account and what happen when they say that they will refunded every money that they owed us from that settlement i guess they used it to pay the lawyer instead of paying there customer well like the old folks saying what goes around comes around there time come someday will be out of business because how crook they are

  50. Justine Baldwin

    My fiance only received 38.00 and I know for sure he was over drafted by hundreds of dollars…and he also said the check look fake some things not right here

  51. i have banked with woodforest bank at Walmart in enterprise ,al and have never heard anything about this or received any letters. how do I pursue this allegation?

  52. I went through this the first time Woodforrest had to settle overdraft fees in 2010 and I receive a check for around $38.00 and any balance they claimed I owed on my closed account was cleared. Later on I reopened an account in San Antonio Texas only to have the same problem. I let the account close because due to health problems and the fees mounted , then I was forced on diability and went to the bank to see about opening an account or what I needed to do so I could get another account at another bank. I was told I owed $262.00 in overdraft fees but they would accept $186.00 to pay it off. I told them I would see if I could get the money and had to wait, in the meantime I receive a check for $9.58 . I thought since the settlement cleared my old account that it was taken care of. I went to the bank and was told no that I still had to pay the $262.00 but they could reduce it to $202.00. I told them that 2 months before they said I only had to pay $186.00 but they refused to accept that and the $202.00 was all they could do. If there was a settlement why do I have to pay the fees and what was the purpose of the check they sent me. I guess i’m screwed to get another account at another bank until there are paid , and I wonder how much I will owe next time I check with them . Can anyone explain to me how this works ?

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