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CFPB Enforcement Actions

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), a federal agency created by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, regulates the offering and provision of consumer financial products or services under the federal consumer financial laws, and has the authority to bring enforcement actions against financial service providers. While the CFPB accepts tips from whistleblowers, and applicable laws offer whistleblowers protection from retaliation, there is currently no provision for CFPB whistleblowers to receive financial rewards. However, conduct that is regulated by the CFPB may also give rise to a claim under a different whistleblower reward program.

Below are summaries of recent CFPB settlements or successful enforcement actions. If you believe you have information about fraud which could give rise to a claim under a whistleblower reward program, please contact us to speak with one of our experienced whistleblower attorneys.

October 11, 2016

The CFPB took action against Navy Federal Credit Union for making false threats about debt collection to its members, which include active-duty military, retired service members, and their families. The credit union also unfairly restricted account access when members had a delinquent loan. Navy Federal Credit Union is correcting its debt collection practices and will pay roughly $23 million in redress to victims along with a civil money penalty of $5.5 million.  CFPB

September 27, 2016

The CFPB took action against online lender Flurish, Inc., doing business as LendUp, for failing to give consumers the opportunity to build credit and provide access to cheaper loans, as it claimed to consumers it would. The company has been ordered to provide more than 50,000 consumers with approximately $1.83 million in refunds and pay a civil penalty of $1.8 million.  CFPB

September 26, 2016

The CFPB took action against TitleMax parent company TMX Finance LLC for luring consumers into costly loan renewals by presenting them with misleading information about the deals’ terms and costs. The lender also used unfair debt collection tactics that illegally exposed information about debts to borrowers’ employers, friends, and family. TMX Finance was ordered to stop its unlawful practices and pay a $9 million penalty.  CFPB

September 23, 2016

The CFPB filed a federal lawsuit against the credit repair company Prime Marketing Holdings, LLC alleging it charged consumers a series of illegal advance and also misrepresented the cost and effectiveness of its services. The CFPB is seeking to halt the company’s harmful conduct and to obtain relief for consumers, including refunds of fees paid to the defendant.  CFPB

September 21, 2016

The CFPB sued five Arizona title lenders— Auto Cash Leasing, LLC; Interstate Lending, LLC; Oasis Title Loans, LLC; Phoenix Title Loans, LLC; and Presto Auto Loans, Inc. — for failing to disclose the annual percentage rate in online advertisements about title loans. The companies allegedly advertised a periodic interest rate for their loans without listing the corresponding annual percentage rate. The CFPB is seeking civil monetary penalties and administrative orders requiring the companies to correct their practices.  CFPB

September 12, 2016

The CFPB took action against for-profit college chain Bridgepoint Education, Inc. for deceiving students into taking out private student loans that cost more than advertised. Bridgepoint has been ordered to pay an $8 million civil penalty, discharge all outstanding private loans the institution made to its students and to refund loan payments already made by borrowers. CFPB

September 8, 2016

The CFPB fined Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. $100 million for the widespread illegal practice of secretly opening unauthorized deposit and credit card accounts.  Wells Fargo employees opened more than 200 million accounts that may not have been authorized.  In addition to the $100 million CFPB penalty, the largest the CFPB has ever imposed, Well Fargo will pay full restitution to the victims and two other penalties totaling $85 million.  CFPB

August 25, 2016

The CFPB ordered First National Bank of Omaha to provide $27.75 million in relief to roughly 257,000 consumers harmed by illegal practices with credit card add-on products. The bank used deceptive marketing to lure consumers into debt cancellation add-on products and charged consumers for credit monitoring services they did not receive. First National Bank of Omaha will also pay a $4.5 million civil money penalty to the CFPB.  CFPB

August 22, 2016

The CFPB sued Wells Fargo Bank for illegal private student loan servicing practices that increased costs and unfairly penalized certain student loan borrowers.  The consent order requires Wells Fargo to pay at least $410,000 to compensate consumers for illegal late fees, improve its consumer billing and student loan payment processing practices, and pay a $3.6 million civil penalty to the CFPB.  CFPB

July 14, 2016

The CFPB ordered Santander Bank, N.A. to pay a $10 million fine for using a telemarketing vendor to deceptively market their overdraft service and sign certain bank customers up for the service without their consent.  CFPB
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