At a glanceFriday, October 07, 2022

Collection Industry News At A Glance - October 7, 2022
Friday October 7, 2022
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Credit Card Borrowers Reverting to Pre-Pandemic Payment Patterns; TransUnion Study Explores Risks Related to Balance Increases

As pandemic-related government relief programs and forbearances fall farther behind in the rearview mirror, a new study from TransUnion (NYSE:TRU) found that many consumers are reverting to traditional payment patterns. The information is particularly important in today’s consumer credit market as pressures from high inflation and rising interest rates may further impact the delinquency landscape.

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CFPB Enters into another Remittance Transfer Consent Order

On October 4, 2022, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) entered into a consent order with Choice Money, a New York nonbank remittance transfer provider involving violations of the Remittance Transfer Rule (“Remittance Rule”), Subpart B of Regulation E, 12 C.F.R. §§ 1005.30 to 1005.36, and the Consumer Financial Protection Act.

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Pioneer Credit to cut more than 200 area jobs as student loan forgiveness hurts collections business

Pioneer Credit Recovery will cut nearly 230 jobs in Wyoming County by the end of the year, as the ripple effect of the federal government's student loan forgiveness program hit the collections firm.

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US auto sales improved in September, Toyota, Honda, Nissan slide in Q3

September’s auto sales performance has come with both good and bad news for the automotive industry. The good news is that September performed better than August and the previous year’s sales.

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CFPB rescinds no-action letter and compliance assistance sandbox policies

The CFPB, in a notice published in the Federal Register on September 27, 2022, announced that it was rescinding its No-Action Letter and Compliance Assistance Sandbox policies (Policies).  The rescission was effective on September 30, 2022.

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NYC Dept. of Consumer & Worker Protection Provides Glimpse of What’s to Come with the NYC AI Bias Law

On September 19, 2022, the New York City Department of Consumer and Worker Protection  (“DCWP”) issued Proposed Rules in an attempt to clarify and expand upon Local Rule 144, the NYC law relating to Automated Employment Decision Tools.  (NOTE: It may be helpful to check out my previous blog discussing Local Rule 144.)  Now, these Rules are merely “proposed” and are currently open to public comment.  In fact, on October 24, 2022, there will be a public hearing on these rules. 

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Recent DOJ Consumer Protection Branch Cases Highlight the Branch’s Enforcement Priorities

The U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Consumer Protection Branch works with other branches and federal law enforcement agencies to investigate and prosecute civil and criminal violations of the nation’s consumer protection laws, such as the Consumer Financial Protection Act. In criminal cases, not only can targets face charges under these laws, but they can face charges for mail fraud, wire fraud, conspiracy, and other federal crimes as well.

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CFPB Publishes 2021 Mortgage Market Activity and Trends Report

The CFPB recently published its 2021 Mortgage Market Activity and Trends Report, which provides an overview of residential mortgage lending in 2021 based on HMDA data.  According to the Bureau, the Report is intended to further the CFPB’s objective of “providing an evidence-based perspective on consumer financial markets, consumer behavior, and regulations to inform the public discourse.” 

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11th Circuit Holds Outsourcing to Mail Vendors Not Actionable Under FDCPA

In a recent en banc decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit held that a debt collector’s disclosure of a consumer’s debt to a third party mail vendor was not  actionable under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) because the consumer did not show he suffered the type of injury that bears a “close relationship” to one traditionally recognized at common law—in this case, “public disclosure of private facts.”

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GM Financial to Pay Over $3.5 Million to Resolve Servicemembers Civil Relief Act Claims

The Justice Department announced that GM Financial has agreed to pay over $3.5 million to resolve allegations that it violated the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) by illegally repossessing 71 servicemembers’ vehicles and by improperly denying or mishandling over 1,000 vehicle lease termination requests. 

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CFPB Issues Circular Confirming that Financial Companies May Violate Consumer Financial Protection Law by Failing to Protect Consumer Data

In August 2022, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) published a circular confirming that, under certain circumstances, entities may “violate the prohibition on unfair acts or practices in the Consumer Financial Protection Act (CFPA) when they have insufficient data protection or information security.”  The circular sets forth the CFPB’s analysis of relevant laws governing data security for financial institutions and provides several examples where a failure to implement certain data security measures may increase the risk that an entity’s conduct triggers liability under the CFPA.

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Mortgage Borrowers Can Challenge Inaccurate Appraisals Through the Reconsideration of Value Process

Accurate appraisals are essential to the integrity of mortgage lending. Overvaluation can decrease affordability, make it harder to sell a home or refinance, and increase the risk of foreclosure. Undervaluation can prevent a homeowner from accessing accumulated equity, whether through sale or a home equity loan. Both over- and under-valuation keep individuals, families, and neighborhoods from building wealth through homeownership.

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Colorado AG Weiser Issues Remote Work Guidance for Licensed Lenders

In June 2022, Colorado enacted HB22-1410, a law governing remote work for licensed lenders. Specifically, the law amends the Uniform Consumer Credit Code by permitting employees of a supervised lender to work remotely. A “remote location” is defined in the law as “a private residence of an employee of a licensee or another location selected by the employee and approved by the licensee.”

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OCC Advises “Careful and Cautious” Approach to FinTech-Bank Partnerships

On Wednesday, September 7, 2022, acting Comptroller of the Currency Michael J. Hsu gave remarks in New York City at the Clearing House + Bank Policy Institute Annual Conference. Hsu’s remarks, “Safeguarding Trust in Banking: An Update,”[1] were focused on measures the Office of the Comptroller of Currency (OCC) is taking to build stronger trust among consumers in the banking system.

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FCC Adopts NPRM to Address Spam Text Messages

The Federal Communications Commission released a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) seeking comment on regulations it could adopt to reduce spam and scam text messages. The FCC noted that the number of illegal, unwanted texts has grown significantly over the last few years.

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Here are 3 major ways debt can affect your ability to buy a home

If you’re preparing to buy a home in the future, you likely have a laundry list of things you need to do to get ready — and that includes getting your finances in tip-top shape. Aside from double checking your credit score and credit report and making sure you have enough money saved up to purchase in your desired market, you should also consider the ways your current debt balance might affect your ability to buy a home.

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Is mandatory password expiration helping or hurting your password security?

For decades cybersecurity professionals held tight to the idea that passwords needed to be changed on a regular basis. In recent years, however, organizations such as NIST and Microsoft have abandoned this longstanding best practice and are now recommending against mandatory password expiration.

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CFPB issues Student Loan Servicing Special Edition of Supervisory Highlights

Last week, the CFPB issued a “Student Loan Servicing Special Edition” of Supervisory Highlights.  In this blog post, we highlight a stealth expansion of supervisory jurisdiction and focus on the CFPB’s findings in two key areas:

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CFPB Takes Action Against Choice Money for Remittance Failures

Washington, D.C. – The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is taking action against Choice Money Transfer (Choice Money) for multiple violations of the Remittance Transfer Rule and the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA). The CFPB found the company did not accurately disclose important prepayment information to remittance senders, such as money transfer fees, current exchange rates and the date the recipient would receive the funds. The company also had deficient recordkeeping practices that made it difficult for consumers to dispute erroneous transactions and receive a refund of certain fees. The CFPB is ordering Choice Money to pay a $950,000 penalty that will be deposited into the CFPB’s victims relief fund.

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Certain Mortgage Communications Must Comply with Both the Truth in Lending Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act

The Eleventh Circuit has held again that certain mortgage servicing communications required under the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) and sent to a borrower also can be subject to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).  Lamirand v. Fay Servicing, LLC, 38 F.4th 976 (11th Cir. 2022).  The court vacated an order dismissing the complaint filed by borrowers who received monthly mortgage statements containing payment terms that contradicted the terms of a prior settlement.

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The FTC Thinks B2B ‘Customers’ Are ‘Consumers’

The FTC’s consumer protection enforcement is evolving to include small businesses, explain Mayer Brown attorneys Christa Bieker and Christopher Leach. The commission is going after a number of business-to-business areas, including the gig economy, small business lending, and payment processors, and is looking to expand its B2B coverage to more areas.

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Auto Loan Interest Rates Climb to Highest Level Since 2019 in Q3, According to Edmunds

SANTA MONICA, Calif., Oct. 3, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Consumers are digging deeper into their pockets to finance new vehicles, according to the car shopping experts at Edmunds. New data from Edmunds reveals:

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Attorney General James Delivers $2 Million to Erie County to Bolster Consumer Protection Programs

NEW YORK – New York Attorney General Letitia James today delivered $2 million to Erie County to bolster consumer protection programs in Western New York. The funding comes from a previous action that Attorney General James took to shut down a predatory debt collection operation that preyed on consumers nationwide.

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Five things to do to protect yourself online

Your online accounts, computer, and phone hold a lot of your personal, financial, and health information. Information that’s valuable to you — and to scammers who try to steal it. Here are five things to do to keep hackers out of your accounts and your personal business.

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Credit Unions In Nevada

As with most sectors in the financial industry, Nevada credit unions are in the midst of change. COVID accelerated multiple trends credit unions were already experiencing, many of which are tied to the growing preference of customers to use mobile banking and the resulting drop in branch visits and necessary cyber security upgrades.

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After a summer season where most litigation was either consistently down or only marginally increasing, August litigation and consumer complaints rebounded with double-digit increases across the board.

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How JPMorgan Chase allots its $14B IT budget

Hybrid cloud infrastructure, digital products and services, predictive analytics, data security, software development and roughly 6,000 apps. Those are some of the larger line items in the $14 billion 2022 IT budget Lori Beer, JPMorgan Chase’s global CIO, oversees — along with a little research-and-development spend on metaverse technologies.

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TCPA Litigation Update — Good News for Defendants Facing Claims Under Florida’s Mini-TCPA

Since the beginning of 2022, dozens of Florida Telephone Solicitation Act (“FTSA”) claims have been filed. The FTSA and related case law have been bad news for defendants. The FTSA is significantly more restrictive than the TCPA because it contains an overly broad definition of “autodialer” that looks at any system that either automatically dials or selects phone numbers to be dialed; unlike the TCPA, no random or sequential number generator needs to be used.

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FTC calls attention to buy-now-pay-later compliance issues

In a new blog post, “Buy now, pay later – and comply with the FTC Act immediately,” the FTC reminds nonbank participants in the buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) market, such as retailers, BNPL providers, marketers, and debt collectors, that they can be liable for violations of Section 5 of the FTC Act based on the information they communicate to consumers and how they communicate such information.

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California Passes New Requirements for Call Center Employers

On September 29, 2022, California passed Assembly Bill (AB) 1601, which requires an employer of customer service employees in a call center to comply with the California Worker Adjustment and Retraining Act (Cal/WARN) requirements prior to a mass layoff, relocation, or termination of employees

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33% of Americans anticipate going into debt after splurging on their favorite sports teams

Americans are willing to spend a good amount of money on their favorite sports teams. Tickets for Super Bowl LVI sold for an average of around $9,500, according to TicketIQ, for example. And this fall, 33% of Americans are anticipating going into debt after splurging on their favorite teams.

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A financial toolkit for victims of hurricanes Fiona and Ian

When a catastrophe like Hurricane Fiona or Hurricane Ian happens, your world can be turned upside down. During these tough times, it may be difficult to know who to trust and where to look for guidance and assistance, as well as what financial steps to take as you begin recovering.

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Student loan scammers are circling. Keep them at bay

With the recent announcement of the one-time federal student loan debt relief plan, we knew scammers were on their way. Well, they’re here. The application for debt relief is rolling out any day now, so focus on getting information directly from the Department of Education.

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Suit Over CFPB Anti-Discrimination Stand Is ‘Tip of the Iceberg’

A banking industry lawsuit against the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau over new anti-discrimination guidelines will likely spur more challenges to the agency’s fast-paced actions to rewrite rules.

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U.S. Department of Education Estimate: Biden-Harris Student Debt Relief to Cost an Average of $30 Billion Annually Over Next Decade

In August, the Biden-Harris Administration announced its plan to cancel up to $20,000 in student debt for eligible borrowers to give working and middle-class families more breathing room as they recover from the pandemic. Today, the U.S. Department of Education (Department) released its estimate of the costs of the Biden-Harris Administration's Student Debt Relief. The Department estimates that one-time student debt relief will cost an average of $30 billion a year over the next decade.

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CoreLogic: Estimated Losses from Hurricane Ian Wind, Storm Surge are Between $28 Billion and $47 Billion in Costliest Florida Storm Since Hurricane Andrew

IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--CoreLogic®, a leading global property information, analytics and data-enabled solutions provider, today announced residential and commercial wind and storm surge loss estimates for Hurricane Ian. According to this new data analysis, wind losses for residential and commercial properties in Florida are expected to be between $22 billion and $32 billion. Insured storm surge losses in Florida are expected to be an additional $6 billion to $15 billion.

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Populus Financial Group moves for dismissal of CFPB lawsuit and stay pending Fifth Circuit decision

Populus Financial Group, Inc., which does business as ACE Cash Express, has filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit filed by the CFPB in July 2022 against Populus in a Texas federal district court in which the CFPB alleges that Populus engaged in unfair, deceptive, and abusive acts or practices by concealing the option of a free repayment plan to consumers and making unauthorized debit-card withdrawals.

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Industry Events

ACA Fall Forum 2022

ACA International

Radisson Blu Aqua
Chicago , IL
November 02 - 04 , 2022

800 269 1607

RMAi 2023 Annual Conference

Join us in Las Vegas, February 6-9, for the 2023 RMAI Annual Conference. Registration opens October 3, 2022.

Las Vegas , Nevada
February 06 - 09 , 2023

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