Updates

March 30, 2020

 

Credit Reports and the COVID-19 Crisis: What States Should Do to Help Consumers

"The COVID-19 crisis will damage the credit reports of tens of millions of consumers, who will see their scores nosedive because of mass unemployment and loss of income. Lower credit scores will impede consumers’ ability to get affordable credit, jobs, housing, and to generally recover when this crisis is over.

Yet the response to this looming credit reporting calamity in the March 2020 federal stimulus bill was meaningless window dressing. The credit reporting provision in Section 4021 of the stimulus bill is weaker and more deficient than even the middling current industry practice for disaster victims. Not only does the credit reporting provision do barely anything to protect consumer's credit records from the devastating economic effects of this crisis; it may end up harming consumers more than it helps."

Credit Reports and the COVID-19 Crisis | National Consumer Law Center (NCLC), March, 2020

 

 

Coronavirus Emergency: Consumer Debt Collection Lawsuits - How States Can Help

"Lawsuits are a common method used to collect alleged consumer debts, and these lawsuits make up a large percentage of the civil court docket around the country.Court traffic creates a substantial risk of spreading the virus to litigants, attorneys, court personnel,and the public."

Consumer Debt Collection Lawsuits | National Consumer Law Center (NCLC), March, 2020

 

March 27, 2020

 

Banks Should Not Read Federal Regulators’ COVID-19 Small Dollar Loan Guidance as Permitting Payday Loans

"On March 26, 2020, five federal agencies (the OCC, FDIC, Federal Reserve, CFPB, and National Credit Union Administration (NCUA)) issued brief joint guidance to “specifically encourage” financial institutions to offer “responsible small-dollar loans” to both consumers and small businesses during the COVID-19 crisis. This guidance contains troubling language that could be read to permit banks to make payday loans. Banks should not read it that way and should stay out of the business of payday lending."

Research & Policy and statement | Center for Responsible Lending, March 27, 2020

 

March 25, 2020

 

Arizona Gov. Ducey must issue 'stay-at-home' order to slow coronavirus

"It is time for Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey to do what other states have already done: Issue the stay-at-home order.

His refusal to act comprehensively puts Arizonans in danger. He should heed the words of Cara Christ, the interim director of the Arizona Department of Economic Security, who followed him at the podium at a briefing Wednesday afternoon:

'As you know, Arizona is still in the opening stages of its COVID-19 outbreak and the number of cases within the state will increase significantly,” Christ said. “COVID-19 is highly contagious, serious and in some cases fatal.' ”

The Arizona Daily Star Editorial Board | March 25, 2020

 

March 24, 2020

 

Major Consumer Protections Announced in Response to COVID-19

A new NCLC Digital Library article lists a growing number of actions federal and state agencies and companies are taking to respond to the COVID-19 epidemic: suspensions on foreclosures, evictions, and terminations on telecommunications and utility service, elimination of interest and forbearance on student loan payments, and more.

NCLC Digital Library | March 24, 2020

 

 

Attorney General Brnovich and Senator Sinema Issue Warning Regarding New COVID-19 Senior Scams

"PHOENIX – Attorney General Mark Brnovich and Senator Kyrsten Sinema are teaming up to remind Arizona seniors to be on the lookout for new COVID-19 related scams. Both offices have reported an increase in communications from concerned Arizonans. Fake miracle cures and events, shopping thieves, door-to-door sanitization services, robocalls, official-looking phishing emails, and government impostor scams are all on the rise as the unethical try to gain access to the financials of Arizona seniors. Con artists frequently take advantage of headlines and are currently exploiting the anxieties of vulnerable seniors over COVID-19."

Press Release | Office of Attorney General, March 23, 2020

 

 

Surviving Debt: Expert Advice For Getting Out of Financial Trouble

The National Consumer Law Center is now offering free access to the digital edition of NCLC’s most comprehensive guide to navigating debt for consumers, credit counselors and consumer advocates.

NCLC Digital Library | March 24, 2020.  Start reading here.

 

March 20, 2020

 

AG asks lenders for 90-day grace period because of coronavirus

"Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich issued a letter urging lending agencies in the state to waive payments on loans for up to 90 days in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic."

Article by Jerod MacDonald-Evoy | AZ Mirror, March 19, 2020

 

Which refers to Attorney General Mark Brnovich’s tweet of March 19, 2020 and his letter.
I am urging all financial and lending institutions who serve Arizonans to provide temporary and economic security to their customers in financial hardship during this unprecedented health emergency.

 

 

Proactive Measures To Protect Against COVID-19

Governor Douglas A. Ducey issued a declaration of Public Health Emergency due to the necessity to prepare for, prevent, respond to and mitigate the spread of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19). See also the Governor's Executive Orders page for subsequent related actions.

 

This Executive Order also instructs the Department of Health Services and Arizona health regulatory boards to prohibit, investigate and take action against price gouging by any healthcare professional or healthcare institution in relation to COVID-19 diagnosis and treatment-related services, and requires the Attorney General to investigate and vigorously prosecute complaints of consumer fraud in relation to COVID-19 diagnosis and treatment-related services under consumer protection laws.

State of Arizona Executive Order 2020-07 | Governor Douglas A. Ducy, March 11, 2020

 

March 10, 2020

 

More details emerge as [Nevada] state’s first payday loan database takes shape

"A statewide database tracking high-interest, short-term payday lending is beginning to get off the ground and possibly start documenting such loans by summer."

Article By Riley Snyder | The Nevada Independent, March 10th, 2020

 

March 2, 2020

 

New report examining the rates that all 50 states allow for $500, 6-month and $2000, 2-year installment loans

"There are now 45 states and the District of Columbia that have rate caps for a $500, six-month installment loan. The median rate cap among those that cap rates is 38.5% APR.  That is a rise from the previous median of 36.5% but that is because two more states (Ohio and New Mexico) now have rate caps, but high ones.   Of these 46 jurisdictions, 20 states and DC cap the APR for a $500 six-month loan at 36% or less.  As for the $2,000 two-year loan, 42 states and DC impose rate caps, at a median of 31%. Of those, the great majority— 32 states and DC—cap the APR at 36% or less.  There are several charts in the report, including on page 14 a breakdown of all 50 states.  The report also has recommendations for states."

Report | "Predatory Installment Lending In The States", NCLC, February 2020

State Rate Caps for $500 and $2,000 Loans | NCLC, February, 2020

 

February 18, 2020

 

New Research Proves Payday Lenders Obtaining Arrest Warrants for Thousands of Low-Income Borrowers

Many High-Cost Lender Collection Lawsuits Drag On For Years and Account For More Small-Claims Court Cases Than All Other Plaintiffs Combined

Press Release | Consumer Federation of America, February 18, 2020

Report | "Unwarranted: Small-Claims Court Arrest Warrants in Payday Loan Debt Collection", Christopher L. Peterson & David McNeill, February 2020

 

February 4, 2020

 

Legal loan sharks, rejoice! The campaign to put you out of business in Arizona is dead

Opinion: A proposal to lower the cap interest rates is dead, priced out of participating in democracy. Meanwhile, the payday loan industry's proposal to eliminate any caps on interest is go, go, go.

"Arizonans for Fair Lending pulled the plug on the proposed ballot initiative on Monday, saying hurdles the Legislature has set up in recent years to get to the ballot have made the race just too expensive to run."

Article by Laurie Roberts | Arizona Republic, azcentral, February 4, 2020

 

 

New Poll: Bipartisan Support for Stopping Predatory High-Interest Loans

Morning Consult conducted a survey, commissioned by Center for Responsible Lending (CRL), of approximately 10,000 registered voters. The poll is presented as a short Powerpoint-style slide deck with key takeaways, charts, and maps.

CRL research publication | February 3, 2020

 

January 13, 2020

 

The Sky Doesn't Fall: Life After Payday Lending in South Dakota

"DURHAM, N.C. – Today the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) released a report analyzing the impact of a 36% interest rate cap on South Dakota following its 2016 passage by ballot measure. The Sky Doesn’t Fall: Life After Payday Lending in South Dakota finds that some South Dakotans are still suffering the harmful consequences of predatory payday lending from before the rate cap was enacted in the form of aggressive debt collections. But much lower cost options for meeting cash shortfalls are available in the state, and the storefronts that once peppered cities and towns have been replaced by productive businesses. Two years after passage, South Dakotans still voiced strong support for the 36% cap and opposed attempts to undermine the measure."
Press Release | Center for Responsible Lending, January 13, 2020
New CRL Report | Charla Rios, Diane Standaert, Yasmin Farahi, CRL, January 2020

 

 

Read our 2019 Updates here.