“The FTC requests a final judgment of over $43 million in equitable damages and injunctive relief against all defendants.”
YOU are entitled to money thanks to an FTC program launched against the payday loan companies listed below. Check your bank records for any debits processed by any of these companies. READ the name of the ACH processors involved as well. And, if you even THINK you may have been ripped off by a payday loan company, get my book, “How to Kiss Your Payday Loan lender Goodbye” available on Amazon for $2.99! It’s all about payday loan help available to you.
“The FTC argues that this provision is necessary because these defendants “directed many of the scheme’s most unscrupulous practices, including posing as a lender to purchase declined payday loan applications” and “falsely
held themselves out as consumer credit experts” and lenders in order to purchase consumer account information.”
“Section III of the FTC’s proposed order is reasonably related to Jared Mosher, Christopher Sunyich, and Steven Sunyich’s misconduct. This relief is especially appropriate in light of their high-level involvement in the scheme, which preyed on vulnerable customers i.e. payday loan applicants in need of financial assistance while purporting to offer nonexistent financial counseling and services. ”
The Federal Trade Commission sued Ideal Financial Solutions, Inc., its related entities, and the people who control them alleging a wide-ranging fraud scheme in which Ideal, through a host of shell entities, purchased consumer bank and credit card information from payday-loan vendors and charged unwitting consumers a fee for financial services never provided.
The FTC filed this action against Ascot Crossing, LLC; Avanix, LLC; Bracknell Shore, Ltd.; Chandon Group, Inc.; Fiscal Fitness, LLC; and Ideal Financial Solutions, Inc. (corporate defendants); and the people who control them: Kent Brown, Jared Mosher, Christopher Sunyich, Melissa Sunyich Gardner, Michael Sunyich, Shawn Sunyich, and Steven Sunyich (individual defendants), alleging that they orchestrated a fraud scheme using unfair billing practices (count 1), deceptive billing practices (count 2), and deceptive statements that consumers authorized payment (count 3), all in violation of the FTC Act.
If you owe a Deleware licensed payday lender called “Integrity,” it’s likely you don’t need to payback your payday loan! The CFPB accuses Integrity Advance of falsely stating the “Cost of Loans” and seeks relief for borrowers.
I’ve written multiple times about a multitude of payday loan and car title lenders having their hands slapped – very, very hard – by the CFPB.
If you’re lucky enough to owe any of these lenders money, you’re in luck. You will not have to pay them back.
“The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) took action today against an online lender, Integrity Advance, LLC, and its CEO, James R. Carnes, for deceiving consumers about the cost of short-term loans. The Bureau alleges that the company’s contracts did not disclose the costs consumers would pay under the default terms of the contracts. The Bureau also alleges that the company unfairly used remotely created checks to debit consumers’ bank accounts even after the consumers revoked authorization for automatic withdrawals. The CFPB filed an administrative lawsuit seeking redress for harmed consumers, as well as a civil money penalty and injunctive relief.”
“Integrity Advance was a Delaware-based online lender which originated and serviced short-term loans to consumers around the country. From May 2008 through December 2012, Integrity Advance offered loans ranging from $100 to $1,000, and consumers typically applied for the loans by entering their personal information into a lead generator website.”
“Under the default terms of Integrity Advance’s contracts, the loans would roll over four times—causing additional charges to accrue with each rollover—before the company applied any of the payments to the principal amounts. However, the costs on the disclosures were based on the assumption that the loans would not roll over and would instead be repaid in full by the first payment. Integrity Advance never informed consumers of the total costs of their loans if those loans were rolled over, even though the contracts were set up to roll over automatically. Under the default terms of the contracts, consumers would end up paying finance charges more than double the amount originally borrowed: $765 in finance charges for a typical $300 loan.”
“The CFPB alleges that Integrity Advance violated the Truth in Lending Act and the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, and that Integrity Advance and Carnes violated the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act’s prohibition against unfair and deceptive acts and practices. The unlawful practices alleged by the CFPB include:
Hiding the total cost of loans: Consumers were given contracts with disclosures based on repaying the loan in a single payment, even though the default terms of the contract called for multiple rollovers and additional finance charges. For example, under Integrity Advance’s default payment schedule, a consumer borrowing $300 would ultimately pay $765 in finance charges—$675 more than the $90 finance charge disclosed in Integrity Advance’s contract.
Requiring repayment by pre-authorized electronic funds transfers:Integrity Advance violated federal law by requiring consumers to agree to repay their loans via pre-authorized Automated Clearing House (ACH) payments. The Electronic Fund Transfer Act says repayment of loans cannot be conditioned on consumers’ pre-authorization of recurring electronic fund transfers.
Continuing to debit borrowers’ accounts after consumers canceled the authorization: Integrity Advance’s contracts with consumers included a provision allowing the company to use remotely created checks if a consumer successfully canceled his or her authorization for ACH withdrawals. The provision was hidden in the loan agreement, and the company used it to take consumers’ funds when consumers believed they did not owe money to Integrity Advance.”
“A Notice of Charges initiates proceedings in an administrative forum, and is similar to a complaint filed in federal court. This case will be tried by an Administrative Law Judge from the Bureau’s Office of Administrative Adjudication, an independent adjudicatory office within the Bureau. The Administrative Law Judge will hold hearings and make a recommended decision regarding the charges, which may be appealed to the Director of the CFPB for a final decision. The Notice of Charges is not a finding or ruling that the respondents have actually violated the law.”
“The Bureau’s Rules of Practice for Adjudication Proceedings provide that the CFPB may publish the actual Notice of Charges ten days after the company is served. If allowed by the hearing officer, the charges will be available on the CFPB website after that date.”
The Federal Trade Commission is mailing 64,607 checks totaling $1.5 million to consumers who lost money to an online operation that illegally debited their bank accounts when they sought payday loans.
The action follows a federal court ruling in favor of the FTC in its case against Direct Benefits Group LLC, Voice Net Global LLC, Solid Core Solutions Inc., WKMS Inc., Kyle Wood, and Mark Berry, whose operations have been halted by the court. According to the FTC’s complaint, the defendants’ websites failed to disclose that they would use consumer’s bank account information to charge them for enrollment in unwanted programs and services.
Consumers who receive checks from the FTC’s refund administrator, Gilardi & Co., LLC, should deposit or cash them within 60 days of the mailing date. The FTC never requires consumers to pay money or to provide information before refund checks can be cashed.
Consumers who receive checks and have questions can contact Gilardi & Co., LLC at 1-877-255-2804. More information about the FTC’s refund program is available on the FTC’s website.
The Federal Trade Commission works for consumers to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish, visit the FTC’s online Complaint Assistant or call 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357). The FTC enters complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to more than 2,000 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad. The FTC’s website provides free information on a variety of consumer topics. Like the FTC on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and subscribe to press releases for the latest FTC news and resources.
Harold E. Kirtz
Payday Loan Help: Electronic Debits and Transactions
How to stop my payday loan lender from taking money out of my bank account electronically.
Did you give your payday loan lender authorization to take your funds?
Do you want to stop one or more payday loan payments out of a series you actually did authorize?
Do you want to cancel your authorization?
Get Payday Loan Help from the CFPB:
Your payday loan lender is taking more $$ than you authorized? Tell your bank or credit union IMMEDIATELY. Tell them you’re experiencing “unauthorized transfers.” The FED’s require banks and credit unions to put a stop to this!
Put a stop to multiple payday loan bank account electronic debits.
Did you sign an agreement that allows your lender to debit electronic payments at repeated intervals, such as loans that are repaid through installments, and payday loans that are automatically set up to renew a certain number of times? You can stop these! Just tell your bank or credit union – this may have to be in writing – at least three business days before the transfer is scheduled. The bank or credit union may require written confirmation of oral notice. Be aware your bank may charge fees for a stop payment.
Cancelling payday loan bank authorizations.
You can revoke any authorization that you gave a payday lender to take money out of your account. Follow the instructions in the initial payday loan authorization that describe how to tell your payday loan lender to stop. Lacking these instructions, the authorization may be completely invalid; STILL, tell the lender to stop taking money (debiting) your account.
Here’s exactly what to tell your payday lender both by phone and in writing: “My authorization to debit my account is revoked.” Keep a copy to take to your bank or credit union. Tell your bank or credit union that, “All further transfers are unauthorized” and you want them treated that way – either stopped or immediately refunded.
Failing this action by your bank or credit union, contact CFPB.
This from the FTC regarding bogus payday loan company making threats against payday loan borrowers. Payday loan help.
A California man who worked with bogus debt collectors in India has agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that he and his companies deceived and threatened consumers into paying debts that were not owed or that the defendants were not authorized to collect. As part of the settlement, the defendants will turn over nearly all of their assets, amounting to an estimated $170,000, which will be used for consumer refunds.
The case against Villa Park, California-based Varang K. Thaker, American Credit Crunchers, LLC, and Ebeeze, LLC, is part of the FTC’s continuing crackdown on scams that target consumers in financial distress. The settlement order bans the defendants from debt collection, and prohibits them from misrepresenting:
that they are affiliated with the government or a non-profit group,
any terms or conditions for buying any good or service,
any aspects of the good or service, and
their refund policy.
The order includes a $5.4 million judgment, which is equivalent to the full amount of injury. The monetary judgment will be partially suspended due to the defendants’ inability to pay, but if it is determined that the financial information they gave the FTC was untruthful, the remaining amount of the judgment will become due.
The FTC’s February 2012 complaint alleged that the callers who worked with the defendants would contact consumers who previously had received or inquired about online payday loans. Often pretending to be law enforcement or other government authorities, the callers would falsely threaten to immediately arrest and jail consumers if they did not agree to make a payment on a supposedly delinquent payday loan. The FTC alleged that information submitted by consumers who had applied online for these loans found its way into the hands of the defendants, who used it to convince consumers that they owed them money.
Saying they represented the local police department, the “Federal Department of Crime and Prevention,” or simply a “federal investigator,” the callers allegedly typically demanded more than $300, and sometimes as much as $2,000. At other times, the callers claimed to be filing a large lawsuit against the consumer, or threatened to have the consumer fired from his or her job, according to the FTC. But the consumers did not owe money to defendants – either the payday loan debts did not exist or the defendants had no authority to collect them because they were owed to someone else, the FTC alleged.
Consumers received millions of collection calls from India, and in a two-year period the operation took in more than $5 million from victims, according to the FTC. During that time, consumers filed more than 4,000 complaints with the FTC and state attorneys general about fraudulent debt collection calls.
The FTC charged the defendants with violating the FTC Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. According to the complaint, they:
falsely told consumers they were delinquent on a loan, they must pay it, and the defendants had the authority to collect it.
falsely claimed to be law enforcement authorities or attorneys.
made false threats against consumers who refused to pay the alleged debts, including threats of arrest or imprisonment.
harassed and threatened consumers so they often paid the alleged debts out of fear of being arrested or sued.