Britain's Financial Conduct Authority has fined Lloyds Bank 64 million pounds ($81.26 million) for failures in handling hundreds of thousands of mortgage customers in difficulties or arrears.
Lloyds and its Bank of Scotland and The Mortgage Business units are set to pay around 300 million pounds in redress to 526,000 customers, and the redress programme is nearly complete, the FCA said in a statement on Thursday.
The fine is the largest imposed by the watchdog for mortgage related failures and would have been 91.5 million pounds had Lloyds not agreed to accept the watchdog's findings early on.
"By not sufficiently understanding their customers' circumstances the banks risked treating unfairly more than a quarter of a million customers in mortgage arrears, over several years," said Mark Steward, the FCA's executive director of enforcement and market oversight.
The watchdog said that between April 2011 and December 2015, the banks were not consistently obtaining adequate information to asssess what customers could afford to pay.
Lloyds said that all customers impacted have already been contacted and reimbursed and that customers need to take no action.
"We have since taken significant steps to enhance how we support mortgage customers experiencing financial difficulty, including investing in colleague training and procedures," Lloyds said in a statement.
($1 = 0.7876 pounds)