You Have A Right To Sue Any Bank That Unlawfully Keeps Your Money,
Or Who Fails to Follow Your Instructions For Disbursing It

Banks owe you a duty to only give out funds that you authorize, and to only give out funds in the manner that you instruct them.  As a consumer, you are entitled to file a lawsuit against any bank, credit union or other creditor who violates your rights under the EFTA. In short, the EFTA allows a consumer to recover their actual damages, statutory damages of up to $1,000 and their attorney’s fees and costs. Banks who violate the law have a lot at stake: Increased insurance rates, decreased profitability, potential governmental regulatory action, and the spiraling costs of defending a lawsuit for their illegal conduct.

The deck is stacked against consumers with sophisticated big banks. As a consumer, you should not hesitate to shield yourself from these sharp practices and exercise your rights under the EFTA. Our law firm has the experience, resources and ability to to zealously represent you in your EFTA action against any bank, credit union, or creditor. We file federal civil lawsuits against any entity who violates any state or federal law and transfers, keeps, or refuses to follow your instructions with how to disburse your money electronically. The EFTA prohibits any bank or creditor from transferring money out of your account without your permission, or refusing to return money that was unlawfully taken. Our firm can and will make illegal banking activity stop dead in its tracks.

Banking Dispute? Your Rights Under EFTA.

The Electronic Funds Transfers Act (“EFTA”) gives you the right to control what money comes and goes from your bank accounts electronically. If a bank or credit union transferred your money with out your permission, or you had money taken from your account without your knowledge, we may be able to help.

  • Step 1: Dispute the Transaction. If a bank takes money out that you did not authorize you need to dispute the transfer immediately both by phone and in writing. If you’re victim of identity theft, report the fraudulent transfers from your account immediately both by phone and in writing, too. If the bank tells you that your funds were garnished by a creditor, then click here to learn what you need to do.
  • Step 2: Document the Fraud Report. Keep a copy of any written dispute you send to the bank.  Keep it simple.  You can simply say something like, “I dispute the transaction for $500 from my checking account number XXXXXXX9734 at your bank.  My identity was stolen.  This transaction is fraudulent.  Please confirm your receipt of my dispute and return my money.  Thank you.”  Write down the names of the person you spoke to a the bank, the date, time, and what was said.
  • Step 3: Make a Police Report.  This is critical. Call the police and ask them to come to your home or work and take a criminal fraud complaint.  Demand a case number from the police officer and find out how to get a copy of the police report after it has been written up. Law enforcement rarely will do anything on an identity theft case or a fraudulent bank transfer in terms of full investigation and prosecution, but you will need a case number and police report to help prove your case later.
  • Step 4: Pull Your Credit Reports. At this point, it’s a really good idea to get a good hard look at what’s on your credit reports.  If your identity has been compromised, you need to know what’s on them. Pull all three credit reports from and save them as PDF files. (TransUnion, Experian & Equifax). If any credit reporting agencies refuse to issue a credit report for you, print out the manual form they give to you to obtain the report, attach copies of the required documents (Drivers License and Utility bill) and mail the form in to the address provided.  Keep a copy of everything you send in. The mail requests for reports will take about a week to 10 days. Save everything you get.
  • Step 5: Get ID Theft Protection. There are several different brands, but our favorite is Complete ID by Experian.  Costco offers it to members for $8 a month and it monitors your existing credit and any future attempts to steal it.
  • Step 6: Call Our Law Firm. We can help determine if the bank violated any laws in withholding or not promptly returning our funds.


CALL (612) 379-8800

DISCLAIMER. The information on this form is not legal advice and no attorney client relationship is created by completing it. That relationship will only be formed after we have both signed a written retainer agreement. We may associate with other law firms to provide you with legal services. By completing this form, you expressly consent to sharing your information with those firms and their staffs to contact you directly.


Banks cannot lie to you, mislead you, or make false statements to you about where your money went and why.


Banks have to be fair to you.  That means the must protect and safeguard your funds and not allow them to be transferred electronically without your express consent.


Banks have to treat you with dignity and respect.  They must promptly investigate claims of fraud and provisionally return your funds if they cannot get to the bottom of things quickly.
What kind of clients do you work with?
Our clients are good folks, just like you, who may have had funds taken from their accounts through fraud, identity theft, or otherwise.  They may also have had a bank or creditor debit funds without their permission.  Banks and creditors are prohibited from doing any of the following:

  • Refuse to promptly return funds taken in error
  • Refuse to properly investigate fraudulent transfers of funds
  • Fail to safeguard your funds and prevent others from taking money from your accounts electronically without your express permission

If you have suffered from any of these abusive banking practices, you may be entitled to compensation. We can help any consumer who is currently fighting with a bank to get funds returned, or has had funds taken without their consent. Call us today to speak with an attorney about your EFTA case.

How do you get paid your fees?
We work on a contingency.  On EFTA cases, there is no fee if there is no recovery.  We advance all your costs which will only be repaid if there’s a recovery for you.  We don’t take on cases that we don’t think we can win.  We want to make things right for you and with more than 25 years of federal litigation experience, you can be assured we’ll do our very best legal work for you.
How long will my case take?
Every case is different.  Some settle quickly, some last for a longer.  Generally speaking, one year from filing-to-finish is a good estimate for how long an EFTA case takes in the Federal Court.  It depends on what evidence and damages you have in your case and whether the bank wants to fight hard, or settle quickly.
What can I do to make my case successful?
Immediately document every communication you have with any debt collector, whether by letter, by phone or by message. Make detailed notes of any conversations you have with a debt collector during the conversation. Keep this log next to your phone.  SAVE every single voice mail, answering machine message, collection letter, and paper message. Don’t throw anything away, including the envelopes that the collection letters come in or anything included with the collection letter.  Here’s a handy Collection Communications Log that will help.

  • Save copies of all letters and notices from collection agencies
  • Save all phone messages and voice mails- this is very important!
  • Take screen shots or pictures of each caller ID screen showing a debt collection and/or robo-call
  • Make note of your conversations with these bill collectors
  • Call us to help you recover your damages


I have decades of federal consumer rights litigation experience since 1996.  There is no tougher place in the world to litigate than in United States Federal District Court.  You'll be glad that your lawyer has both the knowledge of the Court, and the success to back it up.



I've professionally trained thousands of lawyers all over the country on how to sue debt collectors.  I gather all of the best ideas from my legal seminars and bring them back to my law practice.  Because I've taught thousands of lawyers in all 50 States, my reputation is second-to-none.



I run an all digital, paperless, law office.  I can instantly access any document that has ever been created in your legal file from a secure cloud.  Quickly and efficiently.  Paper is scanned, optically-character-recognized and fully word-searchable.  That makes me effective for you and tough for our opponents.



As a consumer lawyer, I pride myself in answering my own phone and email.  If I'm available to talk, we will talk.  Email is always a great way for you to reach me and I make every effort to get back to you in 24 hours or less.  I don't avoid clients.  I serve them.


Pete Barry Selected as 2024 Super Lawyer
Federal Bar Association Member
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