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Citibank Said to Hold Up Customers for Fee

CINCINNATI (CN) - A federal class action claims Citibank demands a $482 "early closure release fee" from customers who never borrowed a penny on their home equity line of credit before the bank will "release a lien" to allow them to refinance.

Plaintiffs say they paid $50 a year for access to credit - which they never used - then Citibank decided their home value had fallen too low, and refused to let them refinance unless they paid $482 to "release the lien." Plaintiffs say "thousands" of Citibank customers were subjected to this, though they "like plaintiffs, had a $0 balance."

The class also sued Citibank's creature, CitiMortgage.

Plaintiffs are represented by Jeffrey Goldenberg.

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