Charlotte accounting firm files class-action lawsuit against big banks

Lawsuits filed over PPP loans

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - A Charlotte accounting firm filed a class action lawsuit against some of the country’s biggest banks, including Bank of America.

They claim, that after helping small businesses apply for PPP loans, the banks are refusing to pay their fees.

More than 4 million PPP loans have been administered nationwide and many of them to Charlotte businesses.

But many of those small businesses could never have applied for these PPP successfully without the help of an accounting firm acting as an agent.

“They’re the only way these businesses were going to get these loans,” attorney Michael Adler told WBTV.

Attorneys Michael Adler and Ryan Langley have filed lawsuits on behalf of these accounting firms, including one in Charlotte, against some of the biggest banks in the country, including Bank of America.

“It’s a David vs Goliath situation when you have small business owners who are trying to take on some of the biggest banks in the world,” Langley said.

Under the CARES Act, agents helping small businesses apply for PPP loans were due a certain percentage of the fees the banks would be making off those loans. In their lawsuit, they claim that banks are not paying those fees to accounting firms.

“It’s not just that they’re asking for it it’s statutorily mandated by the Cares Act,” Langley said.

Banks have made roughly $23 billion in fees from PPP loans and accounting firms are owed $4 billion.

A Bank of America spokesperson said they had no comment on the lawsuit.

While some banks say they plan on donating those fees to help small businesses Langley and Adler say that they first need to pay the agents, which in many cases are also small businesses struggling during the pandemic.

“This is really nothing more than greed,” Adler said.

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