As a result of the financial crisis and its fallout, I lost my job. Like many Americans, my wife and I did the best we could with our finances but we decided she had to declare bankruptcy. We jointly shared a Visa credit card through GTE Financial Credit Union here in Tampa Bay area that Continue Reading
Consumers can get stung by high interest credit cards and predatory lending practices. Find out what to look out for and what we’re doing to protect consumers.
Subtopics of Credit
- Degrees of Debt: Stories from Student Loan Borrowers Highlight Urgent Need for Reform
New CU report features stories from student loan borrowers and offers policy recommendations to restore fairness to the student loan system.
- Free Credit Score Fact Sheet
Know Your Score Fact Sheet Consumers Union is fighting to give consumers access to an annual free, reliable credit score when a free credit report is obtained. Your credit score can determine your eligibility for credit cards, home, car and student loans, and apartment rentals. It can mean the difference between a high interest rate Continue Reading
- Seven Principles for Fair Student Lending
Consumers Union calls on Congress and regulators to protect students investing in their future
- Issue Brief: What to Do Now to Help Student Loan Borrowers
More and more, students and their families are turning to loans to finance higher education. This comes as no surprise, given that the cost of tuition has increased five-fold since 1985. As a result, student loan debt now exceeds credit card debt, topping $1 trillion outstanding. According to recent estimates, student loan borrowers hold over Continue Reading
- Dept. of Ed. Releases Forms for PubIic Service Loan Forgiveness Program
On January 31, 2012, the U.S. Department of Education released important new information about how student loan borrowers can certify that they are on track toward qualifying for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF). The PSLF website now includes an “employer certification” form, to help borrowers make sure that they are meeting the Department’s requirements to qualify for PSLF. Continue Reading
- CU testifies for stronger protections against data breaches
At a Senate hearing on preventing data breaches in the wake of incidents reported by Target and Neiman Marcus, CU is calling on lawmakers and businesses to provide consumers with stronger protections from criminals who steal their personal information and commit fraud.
- CU welcomes CFPB move towards cracking down on debt collectors
The CFPB announces plans to create rules for the debt collection industry.
- New CFPB report on credit cards shows CARD Act has reduced credit costs and penalty fees
But CU still has serious concerns about deferred interest credit cards. Some people turn to these cards to cover the cost of big-ticket items
- California Governor Brown Signs Debt Collection Reform Bill
Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation to strengthen state oversight of the debt buying industry and protect consumers from unfair debt collection practices. SB 233, authored by Senator Mark Leno, requires debt buyers to provide consumers and the courts with documentation to prove that a debt is actually owed.
- CFPB report highlights staggering student loan burden and options for making repayment more affordable
Consumers Union urges policymakers to enable students to refinance high interest loans and negotiate affordable repayment plans
- Consumers Union Urges CFPB To Adopt Reforms to Assist Struggling Borrowers Repay Private Student Loans
Flexible Re-Payment & Refinancing Needed For Private Loan Borrowers April 5, 2013 WASHINGTON, D.C. – Consumers Union, the policy and advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, urged the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau today to work with private student lenders to make flexible repayment plans and refinancing options available to borrowers. Consumers Union’s proposals are in response Continue Reading
- CU backs bills providing free credit scores
The bills introduced in Congress will require credit scores to be included in your free, annual credit reports
- FTC announces $2.5 million fine for unfair debt collection practices
The Federal Trade Commission announced a $2.5 million fine against one of the largest debt buyers in the country for using deceptive practices to collect old debts. ConsumersUnion, the nonprofit advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, applauded the FTC’s action but noted that new reforms are needed to protect consumers from unfair debt collection abuses.
- Consumers Union: Get your free credit report
New web page helps consumers get free credit reports, avoid imposter sites
- For-Profit Career Colleges Under Fire for Alleged Fraud, Predatory Lending Practices
It’s been a bad week for career colleges – those for-profit schools that promise to help you find a rewarding career in a specific field like auto tech, nursing, or cosmetology. Two big court cases have just been announced targeting for-profit schools that may have done little more than put their students into mountains of Continue Reading
- Why The CFPB Is The Best Thing To Happen To Americans Since J.Law
Jennifer Lawrence is pretty awesome, right? For several years now she’s excelled at playing characters that excite the American imagination- they’re young, vibrant, and struggle against difficult odds or crafty opponents. The Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) is also young, rather vibrant, and also goes to battle with powerful forces but, despite all this, the Continue Reading
- Worried About the Target Breach? The CFPB Has Some Tips
As the fallout from the Target data breach continues (along with Neiman Marcus and Michael’s), many consumers are wondering what, if anything, they can do to protect themselves from fraud and identity theft. Yesterday, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a “consumer advisory” with basic tips on how to keep your information safe. So Continue Reading
- What’s Annoying about the Credit Cards in Your Wallet?
About 7 in 10 Americans carry at least one credit card in their wallet, which means a lot of folks know a lot about credit cards from direct experience. Recent reports indicate that consumers’ credit card experiences are not all positive. Consumer complaints about credit cards are second only to complaints about mortgages according to Continue Reading
- Transaction Monitoring and Credit Monitoring in Light of the Target Breach
Target has begun to offer security breach victims free credit monitoring for a year now that approximately 110 million Americans may have had their data compromised due to a security breach. We’ve advised consumers to conduct regular transaction monitoring to prevent fraud, and now some consumers have been asking us, “What’s the difference between transaction Continue Reading
- Scam Bam, No Thank You Ma’am: How to Avoid Being Scammed after the Target Security Breach
by guest blogger Caitlin Watkins In the wake of the Target security breach, there are a number of scams that are popping up. These scams try to gather consumer’s personal and credit information. This is adding to insult to injury, as we also just found out that the initial 40 million Target customers affected by Continue Reading
- Student Loan Monitor Accused of Ruthless Court Practices
It may be a new year, but for millions of consumers with student loans it’s just more of the same: bills to pay, a weak job market, and little relief from student loan debt. To make things worse, there’s a government-appointed loan monitor that fights any attempts borrowers make to get bankruptcy relief for their Continue Reading
- New Protections for Homeowners and Buyers in 2014: CFPB Rules Go Into Effect on January 10th
Homeowners and consumers shopping for a mortgage can breathe a bit easier knowing that some new CFPB rules are going into effect in January 2014. The new rules will bring much needed relief to consumers in the form of new rights and greater protection from harmful practices in the mortgage marketplace, including many of the Continue Reading
- Did a for-Profit School Create Fake Jobs to Pad Job Placement Rates?
This week, the Huffington Post reported stunning new details about how for-profit Corinthian college boosted its job placement numbers with fake jobs. Corinthian is the for-profit operator of career colleges such as WyoTech, Heald and Everest, and is the subject of a lawsuit brought by the California Attorney General’s office. Students often choose colleges in the Continue Reading
- Off Target: What to Do If Your Information Is in Peril
by guest blogger Caitlin Watkins Are you one of the 40 million Americans who had their debit or credit information stolen in the recent Target security breach? If you shopped at any Target store from November 27 to December 15th and used a credit or debit card, you are mostly likely very concerned about your Continue Reading