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Higher One Holdings Sued Over 'Deceptive' Student Bank Accounts

Higher One Holdings, Inc., WEX Bank, Inc., and Customers Bancorp, Inc. have been hit with a proposed class action lawsuit filed by a college student who claims the defendants automatically deposit students’ financial aid money into bank accounts created without their consent and then charge “deceptive and unusual” fees on the accounts. The suit claims that Higher One Holdings partnered with WEX Bank and Customers Bancorp to provide students with “OneAccounts” that allow them to access their financial aid money. According to the complaint, “Defendants made misrepresentations and omissions, and placed unconscionable burdens upon using other banking options to inhibit Plaintiff and other students from opting out of the OneAccount.” The students were allegedly led to believe that the Higher One account was the “best, fastest, or only way to receive financial aid money.”

The suit also claims that the defendants charged “inadequately disclosed, unforeseeable, deceptive, and unconscionable” fees for using the student accounts, including transactional and ATM fees.

According to the complaint, the defendants have been “repeatedly sanctioned” for their conduct, but they continue their “unscrupulous business practice” of deceiving students out of their financial aid money, regardless of previous court decisions.

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