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Wells Fargo Being Sued By Former Employees for Refusing to Open Fraudulent Accounts

Emanuel Shirazi

Former employees of Wells Fargo Bank, Alexander Polonsky and Brian Zaghi (among others) are suing the company for wrongful termination after not meeting their “impossible” quotas. The suit claims that they were made examples of so that the other employees would know that they would have to adopt fraudulent behavior in order to avoid losing their jobs. The senior executives who encouraged the fraudulent behavior, however, were not terminated.

Wells Fargo Bank, one of the nation’s largest banks, is currently being scrutinized for opening accounts (both deposit and credit accounts) without first obtaining permission from customers. The total number of accounts opened may be as high as 2 million (or more.) Regulators fined the bank $185 million last month for the following fraudulent behavior:

  1. District managers of Wells Fargo were constantly monitoring the progress of their employees (as much as four times daily.)
  2. DM’s told employees that they should do whatever it takes to meet their goals.
  3. Employees were given an absurd sales goal: to open as much as 8 Wells Fargo accounts per household.
  4. Employees who didn’t meet their goals were required to work longer hours, without pay.

What’s In It For Wells Fargo?

The impossible quotas were meant to push employees to a breaking point that would make them comfortable with the idea of cheating their customers. The increased number of accounts would then drive up the stock of Wells Fargo, thus inflating the CEO’s wealth. Wells Fargo could then point the blame at their eager $12/hour sales associates who were just trying to make ends meet, instead of themselves.

In total, the company fired many employees because they failed to meet the fraudulent sales quotas. It’s expected that more wrongful termination cases against the banking giant will be coming forth very soon, especially in Los Angeles/Southern California area.

What do you think about this widespread fraud that Wells Fargo pushed onto thousands of its employees?

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