consumer news

Senate Moves to Severely Restrict Payday Loans

– Posted in: consumer news
Payday Loans a Trap for the Unwary

Seeking to extend protections afforded to military service members, the Senate could be poised to restrict payday loans for other consumers.  The introduced bill, Protecting Consumers from Unreasonable Credit Rates Act, seeks to limit interest rates charged at 36%. If passed it would amend the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) and provide a national usury [...]

DoE Signals that It’s Ready to Collect $600 Million in Defaulted Student Loans

– Posted in: consumer news, student loans
Defaulted student loans to be collected

Students who borrowed under federal student loan programs and who subsequently defaulted on their loans are about to experience the power of federal government debt collection. In late 2011, the US Department of Education (“DoE”) intended to receive $1.1 billion in defaulted student loans as the guarantor of last resort from lenders, guarantors, and servicers [...]

Lingering Economic Malaise Means Expansion for PRA

– Posted in: consumer news
With Pennies on the Dollar, PRA Controls Billions in Consumer Debt

Portfolio Recovery Associates LLC, a subsidiary of the publicly-traded Portfolio Recovery Associates, Inc., is a debt collection agency that trades in the junk debt markets.  It purchases old, defaulted consumer debts from credit card companies, car finance companies, and others often for just pennies on the dollar.  It is a competitor of Asset Acceptance, LLC, [...]

Annuities Are Partially Protected Against Creditor Garnishment in New Jersey

– Posted in: consumer news, debt defense
New Jersey Annuities Receive Some Protection Against Garnishment

Annuity Principal and Annuity Payments Enjoy Limited Protection Against Creditor GarnishmentNew Jersey law (N.J.S.A. § 17B:24-7) states that annuity principal and annuity payments are not only exempt from "execution, garnishment, attachment, sequestration or other legal process" but also that no creditors are "allowed to interfere with or terminate the [annuity] contract."  However, there are two [...]

Asset Acceptance Pays Nearly 3 Cents Per Dollar to Control $2 Billion in Consumer Debt

– Posted in: consumer news

Asset Acceptance Capital Corp. (NASDAQ: AACC), the parent company of the increasingly familiar “Asset Acceptance, LLC,” is a publicly-traded junk debt buyer located in Warren, Michigan.  Through its predecessors, it has been in existence in one form or another since 1962.  Asset Acceptance is one of the few debt collection agencies where ownership can be [...]

Consumer Federation of America Publishes Report Concerning Fraud and Debt Collection Abuses

– Posted in: consumer news

Confirming other recent surveys, studies, and reports, Consumer Federation of America (CFA) publishes a report that reflects the growing epidemic of fraud in the U.S. and from overseas.  Debt collection, too, also ranks very high as a source of consumer complaints. In the early part of 2012, CFA contacted state, county, and municipal consumer protection [...]

Government Accuses National Credit Adjusters of Collecting Usurious and Invalid Payday Loans

– Posted in: consumer news
National Credit Adjusters Sued for Usurious Payday Loans

National Credit Adjusters, LLC is a national “debt clearinghouse” that purchases defaulted payday loans.  Grabbing payday loans from all over the nation, National Credit Adjusters attempts to collect them in the respective states.  The payday loans associated with Arkansan consumers contain usurious interest rates that are unlawful pursuant to Arkansan law. The attorney general for [...]

In Introducing EDCAA, the Senate’s Funnyman Al Franken Sees No Humor in Debt Collection Abuses

– Posted in: consumer news
EDCAA Seeks to Amend the FDCPA

Sen. Al Franken (D-MN), a Saturday Night Live sketch comedian (think “Daily Affirmation with Stuart Smalley”), writer, actor, and author, recently introduced legislation in the U.S. Senate to tighten and modernize the nation’s Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).  The FDCPA attempts to regulate what and how debt collectors can attempt to collect consumers debts.  [...]

Industry Advocate Says 80% of Debt Collectors Use or Will Use Text Messages to Collect Debts

– Posted in: consumer news

Text Messages.  A debt collection industry advocate reported on a non-scientific poll where industry visitors were asked how text messages play a role in debt collection.  According to LiquidEdge’s June 2012 Industry Poll (of Newport Coast, California), participants were asked to report their use of text messages as a “part of their overall collection strategy.” [...]

Consumer Complaints against Debt Collectors at All-Time High

– Posted in: consumer news
FTC Sues Asset Acceptance for Stale Debt Deceptions

The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently published its annual report on the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). In this report, the FTC alarmingly highlights a sharp increase in consumer complaints about debt collectors. In 2010, consumers lodged 140,036 complaints against debt collectors; these claims of abuse now account for 27 percent of all [...]

Caveat Emptor: Beware of the Balance Transfer Scam

– Posted in: consumer news

As Americans struggle in this slow economy, debt collectors are finding creative ways of separating struggling debtors from their dollars.  One way is the use of so-called “balance transfer programs.”  Many debts are legally unenforceable due to the expiration of the statute of limitations. A legally unenforceable debt is less valuable to a debt collector [...]

New CFPB Seeks Hot Tips on Financial Lawbreakers

– Posted in: consumer news
The CFPB will provide much-anticipated protections for consumers.

The new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently announced a program to catch persons and businesses violating financial regulatory laws.  It particularly seeks tips from company employees and insiders who know of an employer’s financial services violations. The CFPB hopes that if it can learn of direct evidence from those in the know, it can [...]

Capital One Flouts Bankruptcy Laws

– Posted in: consumer bankruptcy, consumer news
Capital One Violates Bankruptcy Laws and Tries to Collect Discharged Debts

Capital One, a major issuer of credit card debt, is fully subject to the bankruptcy laws.  Despite its sophistication as a major lender, it routinely flouts the Bankruptcy Code according to sources.  Courts and bankruptcy administrators had begun investigations of Capital One to determine if its unlawful conduct is intentional and to what extent it [...]

Debt Collectors Reported Most by Consumers, FTC Says

– Posted in: consumer news
FTC Sues Asset Acceptance for Stale Debt Deceptions

For the last known year, 2010 was the worst year for consumers dealing with debt collection agencies.  According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), complaints about debt collectors are up 25% since 2008.  There were about 104,000 complaints in 2008 and about 140,000 in 2010.  All the while, debt collectors are aggressively lobbying Congress to [...]

Debt Collectors Who Bilked Millions Sent to Prison

– Posted in: consumer news
Police - Man Jail

Two debt collectors were sentenced recently to 8 and 6-year prison terms for absconding with $2.7 million.  Darrian Summers and Stefan Miller both of the former debt collection agency, Maxwell, Turner & Associates, received their prison terms after being convicted of fraud conspiracy or money laundering.  The federal court ordered Miller and Summers to pay [...]