* Citizens to pay $137.5 mln; TD Bank to pay $62 mln
* Lenders accused of reordering transactions to boost fees
* 14 lenders, including Bank of America, have settled
Sept 20 Two large banks have won initial U.S.
court approval to pay a combined $199.5 million to settle
class-action lawsuits accusing them of imposing excessive
overdraft fees on checking account customers.
Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc's Citizens
Financial unit will pay $137.5 million, and Toronto Dominion
Bank will pay $62 million under their respective
settlements, which won preliminary approval on Wednesday by U.S.
District Judge James Lawrence King in Miami.
King oversees nationwide litigation against 35 lenders over
the fees, which are assessed when customers overdraw their
The lawsuits alleged that banks charged the fees, typically
$25 or $35, faster and more often by processing transactions
from largest to smallest, rather than chronologically.
Fourteen lenders have settled, lawyers for the customers
have said. Bank of America Corp's $410 million
settlement is the largest, and Citizens' is the second-largest.
Citigroup Inc and Wells Fargo & Co are among
the larger banks that have not settled.
In 2010, the U.S. Federal Reserve barred banks from charging
overdraft fees on electronic and debit card transactions without
advance customer approval. The customer litigation concerns
alleged practices that predated the Fed action.
King scheduled hearings for March 7 to consider final
approval for the Citizens and TD Bank settlements.
The case is In re: Checking Account Overdraft Litigation,
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida, No.