Media Center

NCLC in the News

Select media clips. Journalists interested in speaking with an expert at the National Consumer Law Center should contact Jan Kruse (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 617.542,8010).

Press Releases

Court Affirms Consumer Watchdog’s Independence; Trump Must Appoint an Independent Director

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JANUARY 31, 2018 || Contacts: Lauren Saunders (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.); (202) 595-7845 or Stephen Rouzer (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.); (202) 595-7847

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, an appellate court upheld the constitutionality of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (Consumer Bureau) and the independence of its director, affirming Congress’s decision to create a consumer watchdog insulated from political and Wall Street influence. Consumer advocates called on President Trump to respect the decision by relinquishing political control of the agency and nominating a director who is independent, who will put consumer protection first and can be confirmed by the Senate.

Lauren Saunders, associate director of the National Consumer Law Center, issued the following statement:

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Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Drops Lawsuit Over 950% APR Loans

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JANUARY 18, 2018 || Contact: Jan Kruse (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.); (617) 542-8010

WASHINGTON - Today, consumer groups deplored the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (Consumer Bureau) abrupt and unexplained decision to drop a lawsuit against four online payday lenders who preyed on working families by making loans up to 950% that were illegal in at least 17 states. All of the lenders are owned and incorporated by the Habematolel Pomo of Upper Lake Indian Tribe located in Upper Lake, California. The lenders claimed that only tribal law, not state law, applied to the loans. However, in 2014, the Supreme Court made clear that tribes “’going beyond reservation boundaries’ are subject to any generally applicable state law.’” The loans to the borrowers were not made on the California reservation.
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National Consumer Law Center Attorney Will Testify before U.S. Senate Committee on Financial Aid Simplification and Transparency on January 18

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JANUARY 17, 2018
National Consumer Law Center contacts: Jan Kruse (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Joanna Darcus (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.); (617) 542-8010

Hearing on January 18, 2018, at 10am EDT, 430 Dirksen Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.
Joanna Darcus’s testimony will be available later today or by 9am tomorrow morning: http://bit.ly/2ER3VrD

National Consumer Law Center Attorney Will Testify before U.S. Senate Committee on Financial Aid Simplification and Transparency on January 18


Boston — National Consumer Law Center Attorney and Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation Racial Justice Fellow Joanna Darcus will testify on Thursday before the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions on “Reauthorizing the Higher Education Act: Financial Aid Simplification and Transparency.”
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Private IRS Collectors Waste Taxpayer Money While Squeezing Low-Income Families

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JANUARY 11, 2018 || Contacts: Chi Chi Wu (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Jan Kruse (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.); (617) 542-8010

Program costs three times the amount collected from financially-strapped taxpayers

Boston -  New data from the National Taxpayer Advocate for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) shows that a congressionally-mandated program requiring the IRS to use private debt collectors, like past efforts, targets financially vulnerable families while costing taxpayers three times more than it recovers.
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Robocall Problem Even Worse than FTC Data Shows

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JANUARY 4, 2017 || Contacts: Margot Saunders (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Jan Kruse (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.); (617) 542-8010

Lawsuits to Hold Bad Actors Accountable for Breaking Key Consumer Protection Laws Are Down and Requests for Exemptions Are Routine–Making the Robocall Problem Even Worse Than It Looks

Washington, D.C. – The Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) “Biennial Report to Congress” reveals a sizeable uptick in consumer complaints about robocalls in 2017, with 4.5 million complaints filed in 2017 compared to 3.4 million in 2016. While the rise in complaints is consistent with an increased use of intrusive and disruptive robocall technology, the problem is far worse even than the FTC’s numbers, according to advocates at the National Consumer Law Center.

Industry data shows that over two billion robocalls are made every month, many of which are unwanted and illegal. Any robocall to a cell phone violates the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) unless the recipient has consented to the call.

“The FTC’s complaint data illustrates a rapid expansion of the use of robocall technology and the toll these abusive calls take on consumers,” said Margot Saunders, senior counsel at the National Consumer Law Center. “However, the complaint database understates the full extent of the problem of abusive robocalls.”

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Education Department Rolls Back Relief to Defrauded Corinthian Colleges Students

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: DECEMBER 20, 2017 || Contacts: Abby Shafroth (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Jan Kruse (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.); (617) 542-8010

(BOSTON) Today, the U.S. Department of Education announced that it was unveiling a supposedly “improved” process for student loan relief claims submitted by students cheated by predatory schools. The Department stated that the new process would “aid defrauded borrowers.” However, the only process change announced will specifically reduce aid to defrauded borrowers by ending the Department’s practice of providing full loan discharges to defrauded Corinthian students. Instead, it will use a complex new calculation to limit relief. The Department plans to impose these new limits on relief even to borrowers who submitted claims for relief months or years ago—during the period when the Department’s practice was to provide full discharges to defrauded Corinthian students. The limits will therefore be a harsh surprise for defrauded borrowers who have waited and waited, expecting full discharges.

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Banking Lobbyists Back FCC Petition to Shield Companies from Penalties for Text Messaging Consumers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: DECEMBER 19, 2017 || CONTACTS: Margot Saunders (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.); Jan Kruse (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or (617) 542-8010

Robocallers want a “whoops” defense when they ignore consumers’ pleas to stop

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Outcome Health has petitioned the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to allow companies to avoid liability for continuing to send unwanted text messages to consumers even after they have repeatedly asked for the texts to stop. Under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), companies can be held liable in court for such abusive and invasive practices, but Outcome Health’s petition asks that companies claiming that the messages were sent as a result of “an undetected and inadvertent technical error” should be shielded from liability. Allowing this petition would send a message that callers and texters can continue to bombard consumers with unwanted and illegal robocalls and texts without consequence.
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