Consumer Protection Program to Aid Military

July 16, 2013
San Diego Daily Transcript  
payday lending news

Consumer organizations, including the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), this month presented the first Military Consumer Protection Day as part of a year-round campaign to provide active-duty and retired military consumers with resources for managing finances and avoiding scams. The FTC reports receiving more than 62,200 complaints from military consumers in 2012, with identity theft and debt collection at the top of the list. Payday loans have had a big impact on the military community, as well. Six years ago, the Military Lending Act limited the allowable interest rate charged to service members for short-term payday loans and prevented loans from automatically being refinanced. This crackdown produced showed immediate results, according to the Consumer Federation of America. For example, near Camp Pendleton in California, the number of payday loan outlets shrank by 70 percent after the law took effect. The National Military Families Association has noted three particular financial stressors associated with the military: lack of employment opportunities for spouses who left jobs for a change of station, underwater mortgages and inability to sell homes after an order to move, and veterans with less of a safety net.
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