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Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Fines Credit Agencies for Deceiving Consumers

In January 2017, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) took action against credit agencies TransUnion and Equifax, Inc. as well as their subsidiaries for lying to customers about credit scores they sold to them. The CFPB asserted that the agencies were dishonest about the actual cost and usefulness of credit score provided. Additionally, the agencies made false promises to convince consumers to pay large recurring payments.

The CFPB ordered TransUnion and Equifax to reveal the value of the credit scores they provide in an honest manner. They must also be forthcoming about the cost of securing credit scores and other services they offer. TransUnion and Equifax now owe fines of $5.5 million to the CFPC and a total of over $17.6 million in restitution to customers.

Going forward, these credit companies must truthfully represent the usefulness of their credit scores, obtain informed consent of customers prior to enrolling any customer into a credit-related product, and make it easy for customers to cancel products and services.

If you believe you were lied to by TransUnion or Equifax, contact a Cleveland debt relief attorney to help you figure out the details. Our skilled lawyers at Cleveland Bankruptcy Attorneys can help you with your debt issue. Call today at (216) 586-6600.

Customer Deserves Accurate and Honest Credit Score Information

Richard Cordray, the Director of the CFPB stated that credit scores play a vital role in a customer’s finances and customers deserve to receive accurate and honest information about them. Both TransUnion and Equifax collect customer credit information and create credit reports and scores that are then shared with businesses. In addition, their subsidiaries, TransUnion Interactive and Equifax Consumer Services market, sell, or distribute credit reports, credit scores, and credit monitoring services directly to customers.

Breaching Dodd-Frank

The CFPB found that since 2011 TransUnion and Equifax have breached the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Financial Protection Act because they:

  • Deceived consumers about the value of their credit scores: Both credit companies informed customers that the credit scores that they provided were the same ones used by lenders to make credit decisions. This was not the case as the scores TransUnion and Equifax sold were not used by lenders. Also, a credit score is one of the many factors considered by a lender when making a credit decision.
  • Deceived consumers into signing up for their subscription programs: TransUnion and Equifax stated that their credit scores and products were free of charge or only $1. Customers who signed up for a free trial were automatically enrolled into a subscription program after 30 days. If they did not cancel during the trial period, they were forced to pay a minimum of $16 per month. Additionally, Equifax disregarded the Fair Credit Reporting Act which makes it mandatory for a credit reporting agency to provide a credit report at no cost every 12 months.

Hurt by a Credit Agency? Call a Cleveland Debt Relief Attorney at Cleveland Bankruptcy Attorneys Today

If a credit agency has harmed your financial situation and you are need of relief from debt, don’t hesitate to contact a Cleveland debt relief attorney at Cleveland Bankruptcy Attorneys.

Give us a call at (216) 586-6600.

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