Higher One Debit Cards Taking Advantage of Students

Student Loans, Debit Cards, Financial AidStephanie Lair

Have you taken out a student loan to pursue a higher degree?

When you applied for that loan did you opt for immediate access to the fund to pay for your tuition, books, and living expenses? And did you receive a Higher One debit card to access those funds instead of waiting up to 21 days for a check in the mail?


If so, you may be interested to know that Higher One has been hit with a federal class action for plying vulnerable students into opening a co-branded debit card to access their funds immediately, and then charging those students “unconscionable and unusual bank fees” for those accounts.

Based on information and belief, the fees assessed to plaintiff Edelman are representative of millions of dollars of fees that defendants wrongfully assessed and deducted from student customers’ accounts.”

This is not the first time Higher One has faced legal action, and according to the complaint, “Despite the penalties, it had received, and its promises to change its behavior, Higher One continued to profit from deceptive practices and improper fees.”

Higher One is not a bank but is partnered with Wex Bank, Inc., and Customers Bancorp, Inc., as well as schools across the country to store any unused financial aid that the schools are required to return to the students. While students accepting financial aid refunds can opt out of the “OneAccounts” offered by Higher One, an estimated 80% do not.


Did you or someone you know take out a student loan and receive a Higher One debit card? Let us know at info@mypirl.com.