Public Policy Changes Needed During the COVID-19 Crisis

Check out CFA’s Brochure 1. Take Steps To Reduce The Spread Of The Disease Halting the spread of COVID-19 is a top priority, which must be front and center in any agenda to address the crisis. Create a comprehensive national paid sick leave policy. Lack of paid sick leave encourages tens of millions of workers, … Continued

CFAnews Update – September 29, 2020

Proposed Federal Banking Rule Would Unleash Predatory Lending In All 50 States The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has proposed a new rule that would encourage the spread of predatory loans by gutting the “true lender” doctrine that courts use to detect usury evasions, according to experts. In response, CFA joined with … Continued

CFAnews Update – August 26, 2020

Car Insurers Still Overcharging Consumers During Pandemic With the COVID-19 pandemic still ongoing, and claims remaining up to 50% below normal levels, CFA and Center for Economic Justice (CEJ) have called on insurers and insurance regulators to continue to provide ongoing auto premium relief. Having monitored crash data since March, the groups continue to find … Continued

CFAnews Update – August 20, 2020

AGs Challenge Rule Enabling Evasion of State Interest Rate Caps Attorneys General of California, New York, and Illinois challenged a new final rule from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) that encourages non-bank lenders to launder loans through banks so they can charge triple-digit interest rates. They argue that the OCC rule … Continued

Brokers and Insurers Cry Foul Over DOL Advice Rule

By: Barbara Roper, CFA Director of Investor Protection Last week, the comment period closed on the Department of Labor’s proposed advice rule, which was strongly opposed by groups representing workers, retirees, and investors concerned that it decreases the likelihood financial professionals will be held to a fiduciary standard when providing retirement investment advice and dramatically weakens the standard when it does … Continued

What Now?

By: Amina Abdu, Antitrust Advocacy Associate, Consumer Federation of America Last week, the CEOs of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google testified before the House Judiciary Committee’s Antitrust Subcommittee as a part of the committee’s ongoing investigation into competition in the digital marketplace. The biggest takeaway from this hearing was a turning of the tides away … Continued

Take Control of the Call to Avoid Scams and Abuse

This year’s CFA survey of complaints to state and local consumer agencies revealed lots of interesting information about unfair and deceptive practices that harm consumers. One thing in particular that jumped out at me was how some scammers, and even some “legitimate” businesses, try to control consumers and make them do their bidding by not … Continued

CFAnews Update – July 24, 2020

Federal Regulators Weaken Payday Loan Rules As Americans struggle to cope with the devastating economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) took steps to weaken critically important consumer protections from high-cost, payday loans. The CFPB issued a new final payday loan rule earlier … Continued

CFAnews Update – July 16, 2020

Supreme Court Weakens the Independence of the CFPB Consumers were dealt a major blow late last month, but one that could have been a lot worse, when the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision weakening the independence of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). In a 5-4 decision in Seila Law LLC v The Consumer … Continued

CFAnews Update – June 23, 2020

Trump Nominee to Head CPSC Faces Strong, Bipartisan Opposition Following a massive advocacy campaign by over 100 groups, public outrage online, and numerous hard-hitting questions by senators at her confirmation hearing, the nomination of Nancy Beck, the former chemical industry executive put forward by the Trump Administration to head the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), … Continued

CFAnews Update – June 4, 2020

State Insurance Commissioners Urged to Ensure 30% Paybacks; Some Insurers Lead the way In a study issued last month, CFA and the Center for Economic Justice (CEJ) documented that the typical COVID-19 auto insurance premium relief provided by insurers to date was half what it should be based on a new analysis of driving and car … Continued

CFAnews Update – May 13, 2020

DOT Enables Carmakers to Bypass Safety Rules Under a change formalized last month, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will no longer require companies seeking federal safety standard exemptions to provide timely, complete information on their requests prior to posting them for public comment. This move comes on the heels of NHTSA’s denial of … Continued

CFAnews Update – April 17, 2020

Insurance Companies Graded on $6.5 Billion COVID-19 Premium Relief Policies Spurred by pressure from consumer advocates and their customers who are driving less due to COVID-19 and the Stay At Home orders that have dramatically changed Americans’ daily lives, insurers representing well over 80% of the auto insurance market in America have announced that they … Continued

CFAnews Update – April 2, 2020 – Coronavirus Focus

CFA has begun compiling resources for consumers dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic. You can find those resources, and future updates, on a special section of the CFA website. Below you’ll find information and infographics on avoiding scams, food safety, and to child-proofing your home. CFA Offers Coronavirus Tips to Avoid Scams and Price-Gouging With concerns … Continued

CFAnews Update – April 1, 2020

As CARES Act Passes, Important Consumer Protection Measures Unaddressed Congress passed sweeping legislation last week, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), to address the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. While necessary to provide desperately needed funding to the health care system, to provide unemployment insurance to displaced workers, and to … Continued

Protect Your Wallet and Your Personal Information from Coronavirus Scams

Scammers always take advantage of disasters and other alarming situations. With the CORVID-19 pandemic, it wasn’t long before we began to hear about people selling face masks online that they never deliver and false claims for products that can supposedly treat or even prevent the virus. We’ve also seen emails that look like they’re from … Continued

CFAnews Update – March 17, 2020

Advocates Urge Federal Government to Address Auto Insurance Unaffordability The market for auto insurance is not fair for low- and moderate-income Americans and drivers in communities of color, even if they have an unblemished driving history, CFA Insurance Expert Douglas Heller said in testimony before the U.S. House Financial Services’ Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development, … Continued

Flawed Data-Privacy Bill Does Not Protect Consumers or Hold Companies Accountable

Hardly a week goes by without disturbing news about another invasion of our privacy. In the past six months alone consider: Facebook settling a $550 million lawsuit alleging that it collected facial recognition data of users without consent; location data companies tracking the precise movements of more than 12 million Americans via our cellphones; dating apps like Grindr and … Continued

CFAnews Update – February 25, 2020

CFPB Weakens Deterrence Against Abusive Financial Practices The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a policy statement late last month that attempts to narrow the scope of federal laws that prohibit abusive financial acts and practices by banks, debt collectors, payday lenders, and other consumer finance companies. CFA director of Financial Services and Senior Fellow, … Continued

CFAnews Update – January 29, 2020

Popular Dating and Health Apps Violate Privacy Several popular dating and health apps are collecting and sharing user data with third-party advertisers without user consent or knowledge, according to a new report from the Norwegian Consumer Council. Citing the report’s findings, consumer groups in the U.S. have called on state and federal officials to investigate … Continued

CFAnews Update – January 10, 2020

House Passes Bill to Protect Infants and Toddlers from Dangerous Sleep Products Congress took an important step toward improving infant and toddler safety last month when the House gave voice vote approval to the Safe Sleep for Babies Act of 2019 (H.R. 3172), which would ban infant inclined sleep products and padded crib bumper pads, … Continued

CFAnews Update – December 19, 2019

Insurance Regulators Consider Anti-Consumer Annuity Sales Rule Amid reports that state insurance regulators are poised to move forward with a new industry-friendly, anti-consumer model rule, CFA and the Center for Economic Justice wrote to members of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) earlier this month urging them to reject the current draft and continue … Continued

Privacy is a Human Right – It Can’t Be Bought or Sold

One of the arguments that some people make about privacy legislation is that individuals’ personal information should be treated as their property. At first blush, this may seem like an appealing idea. Why shouldn’t we be paid when companies use our data? But that’s the wrong approach to privacy. Privacy is a human right. This … Continued