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ANZ faces civil suit over lending standards in Guam

Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. is facing a civil suit in Guam for violating the law when it did not provide customers with important information in bank notices, Bloomberg News reported March 22, citing documents filed in the U.S. territory's district court.

The lawsuit, filed by two retired U.S. military veterans, alleged that ANZ Guam Inc. breached mortgage contracts when charging excessive late fees and failed to provide sufficient notice of interest rate changes. The suit also claimed that the lender failed to provide adequate bank statements.

This follows the plaintiffs receiving a notice from ANZ in 2015 about being overcharged US$6,375.18 in interest. The plaintiffs became "frustrated" by the lack of clear information as one letter they received provided a projected balance of US$51,952.55 on one page, and US$41,564.40 on another.

An ANZ spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment, the news outlet noted.

The suit comes as the bank refunded about A$90 million to its Australian customers over technical errors that led to incorrect interest rates or charged fees. ANZ also currently faces scrutiny from Australia's banking royal commission, a judicial inquiry into the scandal-ridden financial industry.