Citizens Bank Overdraft Fee Settlement

Class Eligibility:

The settlement covers holders of Citizens Bank consumer accounts, between 1/1/2002 and 8/13/2010, with debit cards who paid overdraft fees as a result of Citizen’s practice of posting Debit Card Transactions from the highest value transactions to the lowest value transactions.

Most claims will be paid out automatically. But if you fall into any of the following categories you will need to file your claim manually.

  • Mellon Bank (PA, DE, NJ) – between 7/25/2005 and 8/13/2010
  • Medford Savings Bank (MA) – between 1/1/2002 and 12/14/2002
  • Commonwealth Bank (PA) – between 1/1/2002 and 3/14/2003
  • CambridgePort Bank (MA) – between 1/1/2002 and 8/22/2003
  • Community National Bank (MA) – between 1/1/2002 and 12/12/2003
  • Roxborough-Manayunk Bank (PA, DE) – between 1/1/2002 and 2/6/2004
  • Charter One Bank – between 1/1/2002 and 7/25/2005
  • GreatBank (IL) – between 1/1/2002 and 8/27/2007
  • GreatBank Chicago – between 1/1/2002 and 8/27/2007
  • First National Bank (IL) – between 1/1/2002 and 8/27/2007
Estimated Amount:


The settlement does not provide any estimate of the claim amount. This guesstimate is based on the claim amount and the number of claims we estimate are likely to be filed.

Proof of Purchase: Yes, you are required to fill out a worksheet listing claim dates.
Claim Form: Citizen’s Bank Overdraft Claim Form
Case Name: In re: Checking Account Overdraft Litigation, Case No. 1:09-md-02036-JLK
Case Summary:

The plaintiffs alleged that Citizens Bank was charging excessive overdraft fees by charging amounts to accounts from the highest value to the lowest value, which would lead to higher overdraft fees than doing the reverse.

Settlement Pool: $137,500,000
Settlement Website: Citizens Bank Overdraft Settlement
Claim Form Deadline: May 6, 2013
Claims Administrator: Citizens Overdraft Settlement
PO Box 3410
Portland, OR 97208-3410

56 Responses to Citizens Bank Overdraft Fee Settlement

  1. Has anyone started a class action law suit against the Federal Reserve for low interest rates on depositors funds. And then allowing big banks to make millions $$$ using the public’s money.

  2. I don’t have all the copies for Citizens bank and Charter one bank…To avoid identity theft you shred those type on forms. But I definately banked at both banks and chase and was ripped off with fees by all three. I hope these fees can be recovered. Thanks

  3. I have not got my check.

    ADMIN – Hi Karen,

    Typically these settlements take 2-3 months to process. So you should not expect anything until 2-3 months after the closing date (i.e July – August 2013).

  4. These people rob us customers and all were getting is about $50 ? I pay a small fortune in overdraft fees. I guess I should find a better bank that doesn’t charge you $40 bucks for a five dollar overdraft.

    ADMIN – Hi Richard,

    LOL. Yes voting with your feet is the most effective way to get these fees reduced!

    • yes I paid A lot of money and that all the money we get back I been with then for about 37 years or more so good bye they put me threw hell. janet

    • How much will my payment be?

      Any payment you are eligible to receive will be based on the number of overdraft fees charged to your Citizens, Charter One, or Acquired Bank consumer deposit account as a result of posting
      Debit Card Transactions high to low between January 1, 2002, and August 13, 2010. It is not possible to know at this point how much any Settlement Class Member’s payment from the Settlement will be.

      Payments will be based on the number of people in the Settlement Class and the amount of additional overdraft fees each Settlement Class Member paid as a result of the highest to lowest dollar posting order. Only a small percentage of all overdraft fees that were charged by Citizens, Charter One, or the Acquired Banks were affected by high to low posting. So, not every overdraft fee that was charged is eligible for payment under this Settlement.

    • I totally agree with you richard! Charter one screwed me by taking a double var payment and then putting all my debits and checks thru costing me over $1000 and all I got was $44!

  5. I supplied the law firm overseeing all of this with additional info that Charter One is still engaging in these practices the settlement is about. Part of the settlement claims they entered into an agreement to stop the illegal actions. I thought the legal team would like to know. They really didn’t even respond???

  6. I have been paying overdraft fees every month for the past 10 years. At least 3 to 5 overdrafts every month times 6 years is a lot of money. I am expecting several thousands of dollars. I wrote a letter to the Attorney Generals Office to alarm them of the excessive overdraft fees. Not only that I also complained about the fee of $6.99 that they charged when your account was in the arrears everyday for 13 days.

  7. Citizens is continuing to do it. It is probably so lucrative that they won’t stop until absolutely forced to.

  8. Why don’t you update the citizens overdraft website for questions and answers? When is citizens going to disburse payment to their customers? All I get from the information center is after May 6th. It is past May 6th, When? I bet the lawyers received their money.

    ADMIN – Hi James,

    Payments are usually made 2-3 months after the settlement closes. This settlement closed in May, so if everything went according to plan – I would expect the payments around July – August.

    You are half-right. Defense lawyers are generally in no hurry to pay out. Plaintiffs lawyers are in more of a hurry, because they often don’t get paid until consumers get paid.

  9. If you read the settlement from front to back which I did several times, because I was charged just over 22,000 in fee’s over the course from citizens Bank!! I tried so hard to clear things up, but no one would help me and they ruined my life. There are I think 15 different firms involved representing us ( yeah right) and if you do the math the Law firms are each getting just over 1 million dollars each!! Yup, it was asked for in the settlement, and the people they chose to go to court are getting 20,000.00 off the top regardless if they only had 60.00 in overdraft fee’s. The attorneys could give two shits about us. I was asked to send them all my statements and screen prints over night with all the attached proof I had and they were going to pay the fed ex shipping fee. After I got everything in order and it took me a while they emailed and said, Oh we have enough people.

    They didn’t tell us we would most likely get next to nothing back from our fees that were charged. Because they did not tell us, I didn’t opt out of the law suit. I could have and then suited them on my own. I’m beyond angry, and if people did object to the law suit, it would have held up the settlement, which would have meant the attorneys would be held up getting there millions. I feel like I was robbed all over again. If anyone feels like joining a law suit against the attorneys for misrepresentation by all means count me in!

    ADMIN – Hi Diane,

    Sounds like you had two miserable experiences, first with the bank and then with the settlement.

    I am not involved in this case, and don’t know anything about the specifics of how you were treated. But, I did want to offer a perspective on a couple of things.

    First. plaintiffs attorneys fees often seem very high. It is hard to see attorneys getting millions of dollars and not feel like that is too much. And undoubtedly there are many cases where the attorneys get unjustly high fees and do a mediocre job representing the class. But, when you think about their fees, it is also worthwhile considering that the attorney work for several years on these cases completely at risk (if they don’t win they get nothing). The attorneys also have to front all the costs.

    As consumers we want attorneys fees to be high enough that they attract talented lawyers to take these cases and take these risks. We of course don’t want to overpay – but if we are too stingy none of these cases will ever get filed.

    Second, we also want to be generous in compensating class representatives. $20,000 is the most I have seen representatives get – they usually only get around $2,000. But, again being a class representative involves a significant time investment, you need to fly to the attorneys for depositions and be prepared to testify at trial. Most people are unwilling to serve as representatives. I don’t know how much work was involved in this case, but I think $20k is more in line with what is reasonable compensation for being a representative and is more in line with what it takes to get high quality class representatives than the more typical $2k figure.

    • Hi Diane, I am sorry we had to go through this. They ruined me & my three boys. I’m a single mom at the time of all of this and I was on welfare, just trying to survive and put food on table. I was hit with almost $1,000. I was in tears 3 times begging them not to keep taking my money. They just didn’t care. I was gonna sue them too with my attorney but it didn’t happen. I didn’t think I would get my money back. Maybe we all can come together w/appeal

      • That really sounds like a plan. The fact that they took so much and we really get nothing in return does not seem fair. What really hurts is the fact that despite the judgement….they are still doing the same thing. From my understanding this class action suit covers one period to the next. It doesn’t cover the overdrafts I got yesterday based on the same illegal actions.


        • I was with citizen for more than ten year’s and they changed me 40 dollars for each over draft more than ten times and all they send me was a settlement check for 6 dollars.

        • Let me know if anything comes of the appeal cause they sent me a check for a lousy $20 and then turned around and bounced my new bank account so now I’m fighting to get reimbursed for that.

    • i think everyone should get at least 2000 dollars after taking our money for 13 years and we should get paid before the lawyers

    • I am so down with that. The hearing was in march when the bank agreed to settle. They’ve been collecting interest on all those hundreds of millions all this time. Where is our interest? Right? They make me sick. I will definitely join in on a suit. That should be illegal. Bad enough I waited twelve years to get my disability and only got paid fifteen grand. Then they took their cut. It is not fair.


  11. If this is the truth then I`ve been played!! WE forfeited our right to appeal. We`ve been had by the lawyers. Q: CAN WE SUE THE LAWYERS???

  12. I cannot believe I have been waiting a year since I first heard of this settlement to possibly retrieve some of the money I was “extorted” from Citizens Bank. What a joke, $50. I think it would fruitless to try to sue the layers, what to wait another year, possibly longer for even less then we’re getting now. I would be interested in trying but I am not getting any younger, it seems more of an insult to wait longer for less. Every dog gets their day, Citizens Bank & the “our so-called Representatives” will get theirs. Thank god for Karma !!!

    • I so agree…..i was a little excited thinking ok this settlement money will definately help out with atleast a bill or two. They definately fooled us. Had we opted to not be a part of the lawsuit then maybe we would get more of our money back by getting our own lawyers. I dont know, maybe its just me but i still cant wrap my brain around getting $50 out of $137 million.

  13. Everyone should have been reimbursed for the erroneously charged overdraft fees, and the lawyers should have been paid by Citizens. This is a slap on the wrist for the bank. But did we really think that we would be compensated fairly by a bank that shrugged their shoulders when you tried to explain to them that their accounting methods were illegal?

  14. Well September is about half over. Where is my money? Not only that but I better get a good bit more than $50 from these crooks. That doesn’t even cover two overdraft fees. They got me for a lot more than that. The lawyers should get their share but not at the expense of the people they claim to represent.

  15. Citizens Bank went to my son’s college and got hundreds of students to open checking accounts by promoting their “wonderful customer care”, and “no-fee banking”. They didn’t tell them they had to make 12 purchases during a month to avoid fees, and didn’t tell them about their “off-line system” where transactions didn’t post for 3-4 business days, or about this fraudulent method of posting (withdrawals first and deposits last). In 10 days, my son incurred $276 in fees because they posted his deposit AFTER purchases that were made after the deposit was made, and it took 7 days for them to send him a notice of the overdraft. And then they charge additional fees every 4 days. There were 46 students that encountered this in the first month. Just think of how much money Citizens Bank made off of them. I banked with Charter One and then Citizens for too long and was charged these erroneous fees multiple times, but I figured out what they were doing and I fought it. I called the branch manager, the head of customer service, and eventually the CEO’s office, and raised hell, informing them I would be contacting the attorney general if they continued charging me. They in turn credited me 3 fees per occurrence as a “courtesy”, and they refunded all fees to my son. We both closed our accounts and have told everyone we know about their fraudulent banking fees. Most people we told looked into their accounts, discovered the same thing, and closed their accounts. The best form of justice in a situation like this is word of mouth.

  16. I was told that I didn’t need to fo anything unless I wanted to opt out of the lawsuit. I was waiting for this check and I won’t be getting anything because I did nothing.

  17. Anyone get anything yet? I was also told I didn’t have to do anything. I did receive the postcard so I know I’m involved. Where’s the money?

  18. It’s simple. You are never going to get back what you lost. A lot of it goes to the government which will give the money to welfare because they feel we don’t need it and they work so hard for our money. We will get such a small amount its absolutely ridiculous there’s only one Way the bank will learn and that is if us the working class stop using them. You want to teach the banks, the government, and the lawyers. They would have no choice but to fix it or watch the American economy crash way lower than it has ever dropped. If the working class want respect then this is the only way. If we don’t the rich will get richer and the working man will struggle.

    • Update as of this moment checked my account and got 43.00. What an insult, closed account already! Everyone should do the same.

  19. I’ve been with Citizens since 2001 and one month alone they took $700.00 out. In all the years they took thousands and I got back $280. I am soooo leaving this bank. It’s a shame nothing further can be done.

  20. I forgot this little gem. I overdrew my account by 19 cents and they charger me $37.00. I flipped out so badly on them they refunded the $37.00 as a one time courtesy. I was beyond pissed!

  21. My sister got back $722! My friend got back $36. They both had the same amount of fees taken out? What the heck?? Waiting for my check.

    ADMIN – Hi Jan,

    My understanding was that this settlement wasn’t about all overdraft fees. It applied only to overdraft fees that were charged as a result of checks being processed from largest to smallest (instead of the other way around). This will not apply equally to everyone that was charged overdraft fees, only a small subset.

  22. I received a check for just over $19 today from this settlement. I had no idea what it was for. I did some research and found out about the class action.

    I believe I was included because I switched banks around 2003 and left a few hundred dollars in my account as a rainy day back-up. I didn’t realize that how quickly they nailed it for inactivity fees. Within a few months (maybe six, at most – I wasn’t paying attention), I was $300 in the hole. No call, no letter, nothing – until I received a nasty letter from the bank about my account.

    So, I paid what was owed, and they wanted me to put more money into the account. I closed it, despite their suggestions. I considered it a harsh lesson learned that I needed to pay closer attention to my accounts. (Also, I had switched to a credit union and never looked back.)

    Again, I never heard of any class action lawsuit (so, no paperwork was filed by me), so the nearly $20 check seemed odd. I’m pissed on behalf of those that did file all the paperwork and are only getting $50. Reading some of the stories here and elsewhere, I got off really light.

  23. I just got my check on 09-24-2013 and it was a good amount but not nearly what they ripped me off for when I was a Charter One customer. But, at least I got some of it back.

  24. Yeah,
    Lawyers are in it for themselves I got my check today for $14.78, it doesn’t cover one overdraft. Not only the bank got us but the lawyers as well. And its not the first time for me.It was a payday for them. And I have to say they are the biggest crooks. We got dollars and they got the millions. It wasn’t their money the banks took it was ours! Now whats wrong with that picture. We should be able to sew them!

  25. I called on several occasions andthye assured me I would be informed and I would have a check sent to me.
    So far I got nothing.
    I tried calling the 1-888-273-0426 PH# but it is now a useless automated orperator and you can no longer speak to a live person.
    Does any one have an additional phone # for reaching them…I have e-mailed and not hesrd nothing back as of yet.
    I got whacked about 3000 grand in fees.
    Mr Jeffrey Walsh

  26. Please know, I tried to cash my settlement check and when I went into Citizens Bank I was told because I did not have a account there anymore I would be charged $7.00 to cash their check. My check was for $12. Even though I voiced my displeasure, it did not matter. So anyone who has received a check deposit it into your new account so Citizens does not make anymore money off you!

  27. I received my check on Saturday for $104. I went to a shitizens today to try and cash my check and they stated they could not cash a settlement check for over $100. They stated that they are unsure if the check is real even though the check is 100% real. They suggested that I deposit check into my account ( i have TDbank now) but i stated that I do not have a checking account anymore and would like to pay the $7 fee to cash the check now. I was then told by the bank manager nothing could be done unless I opened up a bank account with Citizens and that’s when my mind was blown. Oh really ? I want to open an account with you guys again when you robbed me out of thousands of dollars? I just can not believe that after all this they will not even cash the checks that they gave out to us. Now I know I can walk right to my bank and deposit the check but I don’t want to. I don’t want to wait 5 days for the check to clear, I want cash now !

  28. I received a check a while back and tried depositing in my current bank, Chase. But my bank put a hold on it because it said that they could not verify the fund from Citizens bank and when they tried calling them Citizen bank said that they do not verify the funds. So now I have a hold on my check and can’t benefit from it. It says the hold is suppose to end on Oct. 5 but will the check actually clear?? Because Chase just sent me a letter saying that if the check does not clear and they give me the funds anyways I will be charged that amount. What bull. So I guess my question is, will my check clear or could this be a some sort of scam, cause Chase told me it could be since they haven’t been able to verify the funds. Please advise. Thanks

  29. Regarding Case No. 1:09-md-02036-JLK, 1:10-cv-21080-JLK, 1:10-cv-22014-JLK and 110:cv-22942-JLK.

    I received a check for $31.67, and do not know why.

    ADMIN – Hi Rostom,

    It is probably because you banked with Citizen at some stage, and they charged you the type of overdraft fees that were the subject of this class action settlement.

    Citizen has just settled claims that these types of overdraft fees (calculated by debiting the most expensive check first – rather than the least expensive) were improper and as part of the settlement they have to compensate everyone that was affected by this type of fee.

  30. Citizens is STILL doing this. They have even changed the dates of deposits to maximize the number of overdrafts.
    In a recent incident, an “authorized” transaction which placed funds on hold (let’s call it transaction A) was used to justify overdraft charges on transactions B and C which were authorized & on hold BEFORE the one they used to do a retroactive overdraft. One was even cleared before transaction A was authorized/held or scheduled to clear. Then, when transaction A was released from hold, they hit that with an overdraft fee due to the reduced balance from the first round fraudulent overdraft fees. Confusing, to say the least. Criminal is more accurate.
    Further, I can not get anyone at Citizens to give me a straight answer on why they can alter deposit dates, retroactively charge overdrafts, and essentially “double dip” by using a transaction as both the justification for other overdrafts as well as charge an overdraft on that transaction.
    Already left a message with the attorney general’s office where the person on the phone said that she has been getting at least two or three complaints of this weekly.
    If the AG can’t or wont help, maybe Anonymous can.

  31. My daughter received a check last week for approx.150.00. The fees happened when she was in college. She graduated 3 years ago.Closed her account 3 years ago. My youngest son is or should I say was with Citizens until 1/2013. At the time he was only 20, his fees keep on snowballing. He would put money in his account only to find out days later the he was overdrawn. He called his bank talked to the manager with no solution, called customer service numerous times talked to supervisors and they would’t recend any fees, when it was all said and done, he lost about $500.00. Closed his account is with a bank that is very helpful.
    Can he still claim an overdraft settlement?

  32. The bank is STILL doing this. I recently overdrew on two transactions – one for $3.00 and the other was for a check of $110.00 (on the same day). At the time of the withdrawals, I had a little over $100.00 in my account and the bank, instead of paying the small transaction and just charging me a fee for the larger check, they ordered it from largest to smallest so I would be fined twice – $37.00 for each transactions! This bank is sooooo corrupt!

  33. I went through hell with them! I always had enough money to cover everything and then there was one month that I kept getting statements of OVERDRAFT FEE’S! (To the sum of over $900.00!) I kept trying to fight it. I Closed my account and refused to pay it. So they send my Account to collections and then to their lawyers! On top of that I had to go to a check writing class! And pay all those Fee’s! (To a TOTAL OF $1200.00!) BECAUSE OF THEIR SCREW UP! I had to pay ALL THIS CRAP in order to fix my credit and open an account at another bank. I just received a $20.00 check in the mail from this lawsuit? Are you kidding me? Where is the $1200.00 They stole from me!!!!!!! UNFRIKIN’ REAL!!!!!!

Leave a reply

Never miss another rebate!
Get our monthly newsletter.