Consumer Credit Protection Act: The Langel Firm, Private Enforcer

Now's a good time for a bird's eye view of the Consumer Credit Protection Act, enacted in 1968, which contains a "package" of federal Acts that operate to protect consumers in the credit markets.

The Acts are summarized below:

Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA):

  • Regulates users of credit reports;
  • Regulates creditors and debt collectors that "furnish" information to the credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian, and Transunion);
  • Regulates activities of consumer reporting agencies; and
  • Provides remedies to consumers harmed by violations.

Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)

  • Regulates activities of debt collectors (includes debt buyers and collection lawyers);
  • Prohibits false, misleading, deceptive, and unfair practices; and
  • Provides remedies to consumers harmed by violations.

Truth in Lending Act (TILA)

  • Requires informed use of consumer credit by requiring disclosures about terms and costs;
  • Provides right to cancel some credit transactions involving a lien on consumer's principal dwelling;
  • Provides system to resolve credit-billing disputes;
  • Contains rules for open-ended credit, closed-ended credit, and private-education loans; and
  • Provides remedies to consumers harmed by violations.

Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA)

  • Prohibits discrimination against credit applicants based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, age, use of public assistance, or from retaliation against exercising federally protected rights; and
  • Provides remedies to consumers harmed by violations.

Wage Garnishment Protections

  • Exempts portions of worker's earnings;
  • Prohibits employers from firing employees for single indebtedness; and
  • No separate remedy but FDCPA may apply to violations.

Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA)

  • Enforces consumer protection by establishing the rights, liabilities, and responsibilities of participants in electronic fund and remittance transfer systems;
  • Prohibits lenders and creditors from requiring payment by electronic means; and
  • Protects consumers from full liability for charges after card is lost or stolen.

If you feel victimized by a potential violation of any of the above Acts, contact us right away.

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