Consumer Financial Services Law Monitor

Consumer Financial Services Law Monitor

monitoring the financial services industry to help companies navigate through regulatory compliance, enforcement, and litigation issues

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NY AG Announces Settlement with Health App Developers Over Marketing and Privacy Practices

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Cyber Security, Information Governance & Privacy, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
On March 23, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced settlements with three health-related applications sold in Apple’s App Store and Google’s Play Store.  The settlements arose from allegations of misleading claims and irresponsible privacy practices.  Under the terms of the settlements, the developers agreed to provide additional information about how the apps were tested,… Continue Reading

Lawmakers in U.S. House of Representatives Considering Bill That Would Reform Class Action Litigation under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
On February 9, 2017, Judiciary Committee Chair Bob Goodlatte (R.-Va.), introduced H.R. 985, the Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act of 2017 (“the Act”). The Act aims to “amend the procedures used in federal court class actions and multidistrict litigation proceedings to assure fairer, more efficient outcomes for claimants and defendants.” Rep. Goodlatte issued a… Continue Reading

New York AG Announces Settlement with Freedom Stores

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
On March 22, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced that his office reached a $540,000 settlement with Freedom Stores, a Norfolk, Virginia-based retailer that sold furniture and electronics in stores near military bases.  Schneiderman said that the settlement will clear debt and judgments charged to 257 soldiers from New York serving at various locations… Continue Reading

Consumer Protection Remains Stated Focus of Washington AG

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
A recent interview given to the Washington State Tri-City Herald highlights the increased focus of the Washington Attorney General’s office on consumer protection issues.  In the interview, Attorney General Bob Ferguson explained that his focus is to recover money for consumers who have been harmed.  He told the paper that since he has taken office,… Continue Reading

Memorandum of Understanding Signals Continued US-Canada Cooperation

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
The Federal Trade Commission has signed a memorandum of understanding (“MOU”) with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (“RCMP”) to strengthen cooperation regarding cross-border fraud matters.  Acting FTC Chairman Maureen K. Ohlhausen signed the MOU on behalf of the United States, and Commissioner Bob Paulson signed on behalf of the RCMP and Canada. The MOU concerns… Continue Reading

TCPA Defendant Settles Class Claims on Individual Basis Following Counterclaims for Harassment and Racketeering

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Credit Reporting & Data Brokers, Debt Buyers & Collectors
BrandRep, the defendant in a Telephone Consumer Protection Act putative class action lawsuit pending in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, recently settled putative nationwide class claims on an individual basis, resulting in dismissal of the case.  The settlement came on the heels of BrandRep’s assertion of counterclaims that put… Continue Reading

Court Preliminarily Approves $1.2M FACTA Class Action Settlement Against Microsoft

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Credit Reporting & Data Brokers
The United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida recently granted preliminary approval of a Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (“FACTA”) class action against Microsoft Corporation. In Guarisma v. Microsoft Corp., the named plaintiff, Carlos Guarisma, filed a putative class action against Microsoft in November 2015, alleging that the software company’s retail… Continue Reading

FTC Releases Annual Summary of Consumer Complaints

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Credit Reporting & Data Brokers, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
The Federal Trade Commission has released its annual summary of consumer complaints for 2016, contained in the FTC’s latest Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book.  The FTC compiles the report annually based on complaints received by the Consumer Sentinel Network.  Complaints include those made directly by consumers to the FTC, as well as complaints received by… Continue Reading

Federal Reserve Board Expands Financial Stability Presumption for Decisions on M&A Proposals under the Bank Holding Company Act

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
On March 16, 2017, the Federal Reserve Board (the “Board”) issued an order approving the merger of two bank holding companies, People’s United Financial, Inc. and Suffolk Bancorp, under Section 3 of the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956 (the “Act”).1 Although the approval of the merger itself is relatively insignificant, the order expanded a key… Continue Reading

Maryland AG Announces Settlement with Debt Collection Firms

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
On March 16, the Consumer Protection Division of the Maryland Attorney General’s Office announced a settlement with five California law firms and Mandip Purewal , the owner of the firms.  The Attorney General alleged that the firms illegally collected advance fees from consumers, ostensibly to settle the consumers’ debts.  In actuality, the firms typically did… Continue Reading

Join Us on March 23 for a Complimentary Webinar on Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA) – Latest Trends and Developments

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, CFS Events, Featured Posts, Payment Processing & Cards
Microphone at Seminar HallOver the past few years, Regulation E, which implements the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, has been cited by federal regulators in rulemaking, enforcement actions and bulletins. The CFPB has not only used the EFTA in its rulemaking concerning prepaid accounts, but it has filed enforcement actions for alleged violations of EFTA and issued bulletins concerning… Continue Reading

DOJ Brief Opposing CFPB Brings More Uncertainty

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Mortgage Lenders & Servicers, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
On March 17, the U.S. Department of Justice submitted a brief to the D.C. Circuit asserting that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s single-director structure violates the Constitution’s separation of powers in the CFPB v. PHH Corporation case. CFPB’s Single Director Structure The Democratic-controlled 111th Congress created the CFPB as part of the Dodd-Frank Act in… Continue Reading

Offshore Call Center Bill Reintroduced in Congress

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Debt Buyers & Collectors
Congress recently reintroduced a bill titled United States Call Center Worker and Consumer Protection Act of 2016, which attempts to deter companies from employing offshore call collection centers.   The bill would require a business that employs 50 or more call center employees to notify the Department of Labor at least 120 days before relocating such… Continue Reading

Courts Approve $950,000 FCRA Class Action Settlement Against McDonald’s

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Background Screening
On March 15, the United States District Court for the Central District of California granted final approval of a Fair Credit Reporting Act class action against fast food restaurant McDonald’s.  The named plaintiff, James Wesley Carter, originally brought the action against McDonald’s in July 2015 alleging that McDonald’s violates the rights of consumers by failing… Continue Reading

TCPA Class Action Dismissed Based on Lack of Vicarious Liability

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Cyber Security, Information Governance & Privacy, Debt Buyers & Collectors
The United States District Court for the Southern District of California recently granted summary judgment in favor of defendant United Student Aid Funds, Inc. (“USAF”) in a Telephone Consumer Protection Act class action, holding that the plaintiff had failed to prove that USAF is vicariously liable for the acts of its third party servicers.  In… Continue Reading

Virginia AG Reaches Settlement with Two Pawnbrokers Over Illegal Interest

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
On March 10, Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring announced settlements with two Fredericksburg, Virginia pawnbrokers – Pawnking, LLC and All Star Pawn & Gold, LLC – over allegations the companies charged consumers illegal interest and fees in violation of Virginia’s pawnbroker statutes and the Virginia Consumer Protection Act.  As part of the settlement, Pawnking and… Continue Reading

High Call Volume Not Necessarily a Violation of FDCPA or Rosenthal Act

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Auto Finance, Credit Reporting & Data Brokers, Debt Buyers & Collectors
In Hinderstein v. Advanced Call Ctr. Techs., No. 15-100017 (C.D. Cal. Feb. 27, 2017), a case alleging violation of the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and California’s Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act before the United States District Court for the Central District of California, the Court found that a relatively high call volume… Continue Reading

Improper Form of Background Check Disclosure Not Sufficient Injury for Standing

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Background Screening
Ever since the Supreme Court decided Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins last year, courts have been struggling to define the contours of standing in “no injury” class actions.  In Fields v. Beverly Health and Rehabilitation Services, Inc. et al., the District of Minnesota recently granted a motion to dismiss a Fair Credit Reporting Act claim in… Continue Reading

Republicans Move to Roll Back CFPB Prepaid Card Rules

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Payment Processing & Cards, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
Republicans in Congress have moved to repeal recently issued Consumer Financial Protection Bureau regulations governing the prepaid card industry.  Rep. Tom Graves (R-Ga.) introduced a bill in the House in early February that would submit the rules to a vote of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act.  A group of Republicans filed a similar measure… Continue Reading

CFPB Asks FL District Court to Approve $107M Settlement

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Payment Processing & Cards, State Attorneys General, CFPB, & FTC
On February 24, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau asked a federal district court in Florida to approve a $107 million settlement to resolve claims against Orion Processing LLC.  The Bureau alleged the bankrupt company engaged in a debt-relief scheme that cost consumers millions.  The CFPB filed suit against Orion in August 2015, alleging that the… Continue Reading

CFPB Sues Law Firms for Debt Relief Fees Disguised as Bankruptcy Fees

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Debt Buyers & Collectors
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau recently sued three law firms in the United States District Court for the Central District of California for collecting advance fees from consumers seeking debt relief.  CFPB Director Richard Cordray stated that “[t]he defendants exploited consumers who were already suffering financial difficulties by tricking them into paying steep, illegal fees.”… Continue Reading

Kansas Federal Court Grants Partial Approval to Background Check Disclosure Class Action Settlement

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Background Screening, Credit Reporting & Data Brokers
On January 25, the United States District Court for the District of Kansas granted partial preliminary approval to the class settlement in Lengel v. HomeAdvisor, Inc., No. 15-2198-KHV.  The plaintiff, Emerald Lengel, brought a class action lawsuit in January 2015, alleging that HomeAdvisor, her then-potential employer, violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act.  Lengel alleged HomeAdvisor… Continue Reading

SuperAmerica Convenience Store Agrees to $3.5 Million TCPA Class Action Settlement

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Cyber Security, Information Governance & Privacy
The parties in Soular v. Northern Tier Energy, LP et al. recently filed a motion for preliminary approval of a $3.5 million Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”) class action in the District of Minnesota.  The three named plaintiffs in the case alleged that they received unsolicited marketing text messages from the defendant convenience store, known… Continue Reading

CFPB Indicates Online Complaint Portal Upgrades are Coming

Posted in ALL CFS Blog Entries, Credit Reporting & Data Brokers
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau maintains an online portal for consumers to submit complaints across a wide variety of regulated industries, including credit reporting, background screening, and debt collection.  The CFPB has announced that it will upgrade its online portal system in early 2017.  The CFPB has released a preview document, which states that the… Continue Reading