Famous Australian bank Westpac was slapped six lawsuits by regulators on Wednesday after the bank admitted that it has violated laws and has cheated customers. The bank was fined for charging money from the accounts of dead people.
As per the sources, the bank will be asked to pay USD 81 million as penalty amount and will also be asked to pay USD 57 million to its customers as a compensation amount. The court is yet to approve the penalties.
The regulators found that the bank has been cheating its dead customers for the past 10 years and has charged more than USD 7 million from 11,000 of them.
Not only this, the bank had collected USD 5 million from 25,000 customers as routine fees. It was also found that the bank had sold duplicate insurance policies and had made its customers to pay the amount twice.
However, for Westpac, this is not the first time that they have been asked to pay penalties. Earlier in September 2020, the bank had paid USD 930 million for breaching anti-money laundering laws of Australian government.
Australia’s corporate watchdog, Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), told media that the bank must improve its poor compliance culture.
ASIC Deputy Chair Sarah Court had told media that the breaches allegedly done by the bank has caused consumer harm, as a result of which Westpac’s everyday banking, insurances business and financial advice has badly got hit.