Plaintiff drops 'junk fee' lawsuit against HomeTrust Bank

Plaintiff drops 'junk fee' lawsuit against HomeTrust Bank

The plaintiff has filed a motion to dismiss a case centered around so-called "junk fees" at a North Carolina Bank.

The North Carolina Business Court lawsuit centered around HomeTrust Bank allegedly "unlawful practices" of charging multiple $35 fees for an item. Angela Foster Preston filed the lawsuit, claiming that the Asheville, North Carolina-based HomeTrust Bank charged multiple $35 fees for the same item.

Foster informed the court this month through her lawyers that she was dropping the case "without prejudice."

She could refile her claim in court if she asked for a dismissal with prejudice.

Preston was represented in court by Patrick Wallace, a lawyer at Milberg Coleman Bryson, but he did not immediately respond to a comment request. Neither did HomeTrust or its lawyers, Daniel Smith and Graham Whittington, of Brooks, Pierce, McLendon, Humphrey & Leonard.

According to the lawsuit the bank's contract with customers "never disclosed that it would assess multiple fees for an item."

HomeTrust has not been the only bank to be criticized for its fees in recent months.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau released a number of circulars regarding fee practices. One circulary was issued earlier this month and targeted what they called the illegal "reopening" of deposit accounts, which can lead to unexpected fees for consumers.

Banking trade groups, for their part have objected to fees being called "junk".

Peter Gwaltney said, CEO of North Carolina Bankers Association in April, that banks, like other businesses and government agencies charge fees for the services they provide to their customers. These fees are transparent and provide value for bank customers.