A federal judge decided in favor of the FTC in its case against a payday loan online lender that debited consumers’ bank accounts. The FTC will seek a court order requiring the defendants to return more than $9.5 million to consumers.
The FTC charged Direct Benefits Group LLC, Voice Net Global LLC, Solid Core Solutions Inc., WKMS Inc., Kyle Wood, and Mark Berry with illegally debiting consumers’ bank accounts and failing to disclose that the defendants would use borrower bank account information to charge them for enrollment in bogus programs and services.
U.S. District Court Judge John Antoon II found that payday loan borrowers visiting the defendants websites are entitled to the return of more than $9.5 million.
According to the FTC’s complaint,the defendants’ websites asked for consumers’ personal and financial information, and, near the end of the loan application form, offered unrelated programs for food, travel and merchandise discounts, or for long distance calling and Internet access. Payday loan borrowers who clicked the submit button were automatically enrolled into the bogus programs. Payday borrowers were charged $59.90 per month and later charged up to $99.90 per year.
Read the FTC Press Release here: FTC