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Wells Fargo refunding customers for inappropriate add-on products

If you were charged monthly fees by Wells Fargo for pet insurance, a legal services program or identity theft services, those fees may be refunded. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is investigating the scandal-ridden bank to determine if customers were deceived, confused by, or even aware of the products and how to use them.

According to a Wall Street Journal reporter, Wells Fargo is "working with our regulators on the ongoing review" and is "reviewing add-on products sold to consumers by the bank or its service providers and if issues are found during this review, we will make things right with customers in the form of refunds or remediation."

Wells Fargo is in the process of refunding tens of millions of dollars it received selling the products, which were apparently added on to hundreds of thousands of accounts.

In a securities filing last August, the bank said he was reviewing the add-on products and had begun remediation efforts for impacted customers. It has hired accounting giant Ernst & Young to scrutinize between 15 and 20 of the approximately 85 add-on products that Wells had been offering.

Some add-ons such as homeowners or even car insurance, are considered appropriate for banking consumers, while others like pet insurance are not.

According to MarketWatch, the bank sold insurance through about a dozen vendors including Allstate, Chubb and AIG. These vendor-fulfilled products have been the most difficult to sort out for refunds.

Wells Fargo continues to contend with a number of different scandals, including having been found to have opened over 3 million bank accounts without the customers' knowledge or approval. In July, it disclosed a $619 million charge against its second-quarter earnings related to refunds for customers who were overcharged by its mortgage lending, auto, wealth management and foreign exchange units.

In April, Wells agreed to a $1 billion settlement with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Office of the Comptroller of Currency over risk management practices. In February, the Federal Reserve also attacked the bank's risk management practices and took the highly unusual move of limiting how much Wells Fargo would be allowed to grow.

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