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Auto Sision v. Wells Fargo
United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
375 F. Supp. 3d 627 (2019)
Auto Sision, Inc. (plaintiff) was an automotive body-repair company that hired Barbara Szeliga as its bookkeeper. Szeliga was solely responsible for the handling and accounting of Auto Sision’s payments from automobile insurers. Szeliga embezzled money from Auto Sision by fraudulently endorsing and depositing Auto Sision’s checks into a Wells Fargo (defendant) checking account for United Check Cashing (United), a company she co-owned. Wells Fargo had previously required third-party audits of cash-checking clients to avoid fraudulent activity. United declared bankruptcy and was still able to maintain its checking account with Wells Fargo. Wells Fargo stopped requiring audits and failed to notice that United continued to cash checks despite its bankruptcy status. Auto Sision eventually discovered Szeliga’s embezzlement, terminated her employment, and reported Szeliga to the police. Auto Sision filed suit in federal district court, alleging that Wells Fargo failed to exercise ordinary care by ceasing its audit requirement and allowing United to maintain an account despite its bankruptcy status. Wells Fargo filed a motion to dismiss.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Kenney, J.)
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