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Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Annual Report 2015

March 30, 2015 Comments off

Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Annual Report 2015
Source: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

We’re pleased to submit to Congress our fourth annual report summarizing activities to administer the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). This year’s report describes activities conducted by the CFPB and the FTC during 2014 in relation to debt collection. The CFPB and the FTC work closely to coordinate debt collection enforcement actions among other matters related to debt collection.

This report provides a background of the debt collection market; contains an overview of consumer complaints submitted to the CFPB in 2014; summarizes the Bureau’s supervisory activities in the debt collection market; describes the Bureau’s and the Commission’s enforcement actions; presents the CFPB’s and FTC’s consumer education and outreach initiatives; and discusses developments in the Bureau’s rulemaking activities, and the FTC’s policy and research initiatives.

Arbitration Study: Report to Congress 2015

March 11, 2015 Comments off

Arbitration Study: Report to Congress 2015
Source: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
From press release:

After considering dozens of comment letters and meetings with external stakeholders, we looked at nearly 850 consumer-finance agreements to examine the prevalence of arbitration clauses and their terms. We also reviewed more than 1,800 consumer finance arbitration disputes filed over a period of three years and more than 3,400 individual federal court lawsuits. We also looked at 42,000 credit card cases filed in selected small claims court in 2012.

We supplemented this research by assembling and analyzing a set of roughly 420 consumer financial class action settlements in federal courts over a period of five years and over 1,100 state and federal public enforcement actions in the consumer finance area. We also conducted a national survey of 1,000 consumers with credit cards concerning their knowledge and understanding of arbitration and other dispute resolution mechanisms.

We believe this is the most thorough empirical research on this subject, to date.

Financial well-being: The goal of financial education

February 4, 2015 Comments off

Financial well-being: The goal of financial education
Source: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

A growing consensus is emerging that the ultimate measure of success for financial literacy efforts should be improvement in individual financial well-being. But financial well-being has never been explicitly defined, nor is there a standard way to measure it. This report provides a conceptual framework for defining and measuring success in financial education by delivering a proposed definition of financial well-being, and insight into the factors that contribute to it. This framework is grounded in the existing literature, expert opinion, and the experiences and voice of the consumer garnered through in-depth, one-on-one interviews with working-age and older consumers.

CFPB — Consumers’ mortgage shopping experience

January 14, 2015 Comments off

Consumers’ mortgage shopping experience
Source: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

We aim to help consumers become better and more informed mortgage shoppers. This report examines information related to consumers’ mortgage shopping experience, using responses from the National Survey of Mortgage Borrowers. Our focus is on what the data tell us about the early stages of getting a mortgage, particularly the extent to which consumers shopped for mortgages, their knowledge of the mortgage process when they began, and the sources of information they relied on.

Consumer credit reports: A study of medical and non-medical collections

December 12, 2014 Comments off

Consumer credit reports: A study of medical and non-medical collections
Source: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Roughly half of all collections tradelines that appear on credit reports are reported by debt collectors seeking to collect on medical bills claimed to be owed to hospitals and other medical providers. These medical debt collections tradelines affect the credit reports of nearly one-fifth of all consumers in the credit reporting system.

Our paper describes characteristics of the medical and non-medical collections tradelines on consumers’ credit reports, and the processes by which they appear and disappear. It draws on analysis of data contained through our Consumer Credit Panel (CCP); consumer complaints to the CFPB about collections; and interviews with debt collection agencies, healthcare providers, and other observers of the healthcare billing and payment processes.

Annual report of the CFPB student loan ombudsman 2014

October 20, 2014 Comments off

Annual report of the CFPB student loan ombudsman 2014
Source: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act established a student loan ombudsman within the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Pursuant to the Act, this annual report analyzes complaints submitted by consumers with student loans from October 1, 2013, through September 30, 2014. The largest subset of private student loan complaints we handled relate to the lack of repayment options and flexibility in times of distress.

Don’t let your student debt stop you from serving your country

October 1, 2014 Comments off

Don’t let your student debt stop you from serving your country
Source: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Last year, the CFPB launched an initiative to enlist the support of public service employers to help their employees tackle their student debt. We also published a report, which estimated that approximately one-fourth of the labor force is working in a public service profession and potentially eligible for existing benefits to help them manage their student loans.

Today, we joined the Department of Education, the Peace Corps, and the Corporation for National and Community Service to release new resources for employees, volunteers, and recent graduates with student loan debt. Whether you choose to serve in the military, volunteer in the Peace Corps, or pursue national service, we know that managing your money while serving your country can be hard. This is particularly true if you have student loans.

To help, we’ve developed new customized guides for members of the military, for Peace Corps volunteers, and for participants in national service programs with student debt. In addition, we have partnered with the Peace Corps and the AmeriCorps programs to help their members understand how to qualify for loan forgiveness and other student loan benefits—part of our financial education project focused on public service and student debt.

Student loan borrowers working in public service have access to a range of existing benefits designed to help them manage their debt. One program provides borrowers that spend a decade or more in service with the opportunity to have their loans forgiven after 10 years (120 months) of on-time payments. There are also a range of other existing benefits for servicemembers, teachers and other public servants.

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