A federal judge granted preliminary approval over the weekend for Wells Fargo’s $142 million national class action settlement. The court ruled that the settlement, which covers fake accounts back to 2002, “fair, reasonable and adequate.”
Victims may still have to wait before they get paid. The bank and lawyers for the plaintiffs plan to reach out to customers in the next three months, but the settlement may not be final until early 2018. Still, Wells Fargo CEO Tim Sloan called the court ruling a “major milestone in our efforts to make things right for our customers.”
Wells Fargo admitted last September that 2 million potentially unauthorized checking and credit card accounts were opened between 2011 and 2015. The bank blamed unrealistic sales goals. The outrage forced the ouster of longtime CEO John Stumpf and the restructuring of Wells Fargo’s sales targets, and it spawned federal and local investigations.