(Reuters) - Bank of America Corp (BAC.N) has agreed to settle a U.S. Department of Justice civil probe accusing it of discriminating against borrowers on the basis of disability, violating the federal Fair Housing Act.
The settlement resolves allegations that the second-largest U.S. bank required some mortgage applicants to provide letters from their doctors to document their social security disability insurance income.
“Loan applicants with disabilities should not be subjected to invasive requests for medical information from a doctor when they are applying for credit,” said Thomas Perez, assistant attorney general in the Justice Department’s civil rights unit.
Bank of America agreed to pay $1,000, $2,500 or $5,000 to eligible mortgage loan applicants asked to provide such letters, and change some policies. The accord requires court approval.
Reporting By Jonathan Stempel in New York; editing by Carol Bishopric