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Press Releases

August 24, 2017
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A recent resolution reached between the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and American Express will cure the harms previously caused to consumers residing in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and other U.S. territories. Under the agreement, American Express agreed to compensate consumers who were harmed by unequal and inferior credit card terms that occurred in these U.S. territories, compared to credit they would have received in the continental United States. Higher interest rates, stricter credit cutoffs, and less debt forgiveness harmed more than 200,000...
May 11, 2017
WASHINGTON, D.C. – A Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution to repeal a new consumer protection rule on prepaid cards is not set to advance in the Senate ahead of a deadline, nixing the measure’s chances of getting a vote by the full chamber. The prepaid card rule was finalized by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) last October. The rule includes many commonsense protections for prepaid users, such as standard fraud and disclosure provisions of the Electronic Funds Transfer Act. These protections apply to error resolutions, lost cards, and unauthorized transactions,...
February 3, 2017
U.S. Senator David Perdue (R-Ga.) introduced a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution that would repeal new rules on prepaid cards finalized by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) last October. The rules were designed to protect low-income families, many of whom have no bank account and use prepaid cards to handle their financial transactions. CRA is a legislative tool that allows lawmakers to undo federal regulation with a simple majority vote in both the House and Senate. If invoked, CRA prohibits a federal agency—like the CFPB—from rolling out regulations similar to those...
October 5, 2016
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) finalized their rule this week to make prepaid cards safer. The rule includes many important provisions, such as requiring that the Electronic Funds Transfer Act protections apply to error resolutions, lost cards, and unauthorized transactions, and the rule finalizes a new "Know Before You Owe" disclosures for prepaid accounts to give consumers clear, upfront information about fees and other key details. Though the rule includes valuable improvements to protect users who borrow beyond the balance of their card--such as requiring prepaid...
September 26, 2014
"This proposed regulation, in conjunction with the important efforts of our military service organizations and advocates, veteran service organizations, and responsible lenders, would help ensure that our service members and their families are as far beyond the reach of financial exploitation as possible." Department of Defense, Press Release, September 26, 2014 Today, the Department of Defense released proposed rules to further protect service members and their families from predatory lending practices. Below is a summary of the changes. For more information or to speak with an...
May 20, 2014
On the fifth anniversary of the Credit CARD Act of 2009, consumer advocates applaud the Act's success in saving Americans billions of dollars in predatory and excessive fees. By one estimate, the CARD Act has saved consumers $12.6 billion annually in lower fees and interest charges; a recent report from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau identifies nearly $4 billion annual savings in fees alone. Now it is time, advocates urge, to address abusive fees on debit and prepaid cards. "The CARD Act has been hugely successful in banning the biggest unfair credit card gotchas like...
October 2, 2013
Two new studies show that the Credit CARD Act of 2009 successfully reformed credit card practices, with one study estimating that the Act is saving households over $20 billion per year in previously-hidden fees. Both studies also found no evidence that lenders restricted credit card lending or increased interest or fees to offset the protections mandated by the Act. These results confirm that regulation of financial products can increase consumer protections and result in substantial savings. A report published by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) today looked at data...
December 12, 2012
In the first report of its kind, the Center for Responsible Lending examines consumer lending markets across-the-board and finds that—despite major gains in regulatory reforms—predatory lending continues to undermine American households trying to rebuild their finances after the recession. View or download the report: http://rspnsb.li/state-of-lending. The State of Lending in America and its Impact on U.S. Households (State of Lending) paints a picture of working families struggling to manage debt while coping with stagnant incomes and a substantial decrease in wealth. The...
May 8, 2012
Credit card losses in the current downturn mounted faster at banks using unfair, deceptive card practices, new CRL research finds. That's because high-cost penalty fees and interest rates were not used to mitigate risk—as credit card issuers claimed—but instead were the risk that led to higher default rates. Read the report, "Predatory Credit Card Lending: Unsafe, Unsound for Consumers and Lenders." In addition to showing that practices that hurt consumers also hurt credit card issuers, the study finds: Bad practices are a better predictor of consumer complaints and an issuer's...
June 7, 2011
Newly available data show CRL's initial research findings from earlier this year remain true: Since the Credit CARD Act of 2009 was passed, prices have become more transparent, with no constriction of credit and no increase in the interest rates consumers pay. See the update and original report: http://qa.crl.w.lmdagency.net/research-publication/credit-card-clarity. The updated information also provides fresh evidence that, prior to the CARD Act, pricing confused consumers, which is why the law was indeed needed. Transparency is important because competition works and markets function...

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