Lloyds Fined $81 Million Over Clients With Mortgage Arrears

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(Bloomberg) -- Lloyds Banking Group Plc and its Bank of Scotland and Mortgage Business units were fined a total of 64 million pounds ($81 million) over the treatment of customers who fell behind on their mortgages.

The Financial Conduct Authority said that more than a quarter of a million customers, often including people considered vulnerable, were treated unfairly by the bank.

“Banks are required to treat customers fairly, even when those customers are in financial difficulties,” Mark Steward, executive director of Enforcement and Market Oversight at the FCA, said in a statement Thursday.

The fine comes on top of more than 300 million pounds that the bank has paid out in compensation to mortgage customers, the FCA said. The regulator said that Lloyds had agreed to settle the case, receiving a 30% reduction in the financial penalty.

Lloyds said the bank has contacted customers who were inappropriately charged late fees from 2011 to 2015 to “apologize.”

“We have since taken significant steps to enhance how we support mortgage customers experiencing financial difficulty, including investing in colleague training and procedures,” the London-based bank said in a statement.

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