Archive for May 2013

CFPB Rule to Help Stay-At-Home Spouses Get Credit Cards

CFPBThe Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued rules on The Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act (“CARD Act”) to make it easier for stay-at-home spouses and partners to get credit cards by allowing card issuers to consider household income in their applications. The 2009 CARD Act requires that card issuers determine if a consumer is able to repay a debt before opening an account or increasing a limit. Until this new regulation, the issuer was only able to consider the individual applicant’s independent income. Card issuers have six months to comply with the new regulation. The CFPB’s press release is here.

FTC Fines Telemarketer for TCPA Violations, Orders It to Cease Illegal Robocalls

robocallThe FTC has ordered the California company Skyy Consulting, Inc., which provides robocalling services to its clients as CallFire, to pay a $75,000 fine and stop all illegal telemarketing robocalls as part of a settlement between the parties. The Federal Trade Commission had charged Skyy Consulting with violating the Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR), by helping its clients place robocalls to consumers without their written consent.

The TSR does not prohibit calls that provide informational recorded messages, such as flight information, school delays, etc., nor does it apply to calls regarding the collection of a debt. Intended to stop unwanted sales and marketing calls, the rule also excludes calls from politicians, charities and banks among others.

As part of the settlement, CallFire must review all of its pre-recorded messages and terminate contracts with any clients it finds have violated the TSR.

FTC, CFPB to Co-Host Roundtable on Data Integrity in Debt Collection

FTC LogoI will be attending a joint FTC-CFPB roundtable on data integrity in debt collection on June 6, at the FTC’s Satellite Building Conference Center in Washington, D.C. Consumer advocates, industry experts, regulators and more will attend the roundtable to discuss what information is available to collectors and how it is being used in the debt collection process. Panelists will also examine the verification of disputed debts under the FDCPA and FCRA; debt collection litigation and time-barred debts.