Wells Fargo Settlement Isn’t Bar to False Claims Lawsuit
Wells Fargo & Co.’s argument that it can’t be sued by the U.S. over illegal mortgage practices because of an earlier deal with the government was rejected by a federal judge as a misreading of the settlement terms.
U.S. District Judge Rosemary Collyer, in a ruling today in Washington, said the $25 billion agreement Wells and four other banks made with the Justice Department in April didn’t release Wells from facing allegations by the U.S. attorney in New York in a separate False Claims Act lawsuit filed in October.
“The court finds that the release is clear and unambiguous, as evidenced by its plain language,” Collyer wrote. “The plain language of the release governs, and it does not have the meaning ascribed to it by Wells Fargo.”