What We Know

CFPB Monthly Complaint Report Focuses on Credit Reporting

June 17, 2016 | by Caren D. Enloe

The CFPB issued its monthly report on consumer complaints, providing a high-level snapshot of recent trends in consumer complaints. The Report summarizes the volume of complaints by product category, company, and state. Additionally, the report’s monthly product spotlight highlights credit reporting which was last featured as a monthly spotlight in the August 2015 CFPB Consumer Trends Report. In its press release, the CFPB confirmed that consumer reporting agencies, including specialty consumer reporting agencies, are a “major focus” for the CFPB. Here are the highlights of this month’s report:

Complaint Volume by Product

  • Three products yielding the highest complaint volume (based on a three-month average) are debt collection, mortgage and credit reporting;
  • A trend worth noting is that the number of debt collection complaints remains almost flat;
  • For the three month period, student loans indicated the highest increase in change – 48% when compared to 2015;
  • On a monthly basis, debt collection, mortgage and credit reporting complaints were all down in April compared to March;

Highlighted Product: Credit Reporting

  • The CFPB notes that, as was the case last August, the overwhelming most common credit reporting complaint in July was incorrect information on credit reports (77% of all credit reporting complaints);
  • The CFPB report indicates that these complaints frequently involved accounts in collection for which the consumer complained were not accurately reflecting the status of the collection;
  • The CFPB report notes that consumers are reporting difficulties with disputing inaccuracies with their credit report. A lot of these complaints center on issues with customer service.
  • The report notes that the majority of the complaints the CFPB receives are directed at the three major consumer reporting rather than the furnisher of information; and
  • The Report also notes that the Bureau is receiving complaints against specialty consumer reporting agencies and highlighted complaints involving rental, background and employment screening complaints. The Report highlights that consumers commonly complain that erroneous information reported by specialty consumer reporting agencies involve identity theft.

Caren Enloe leads Smith Debnam’ s consumer financial services litigation and compliance group. In her practice, she defends consumer financial service providers and members of the collection industry in state and federal court, as well as in regulatory matters involving a variety of consumer protection laws.  Caren also advises fintech companies, law firms, and collection agencies regarding an array of consumer finance issues. An active writer and speaker, Caren currently serves as chair of the Debt Collection Practices and Bankruptcy subcommittee for the American Bar Association’s Consumer Financial Services Committee. She is also a member of the Defense Bar for the National Creditors Bar Association, the North Carolina State Chair for ACA International’s Member Attorney Program and a member of the Bank Counsel Committee of the North Carolina Bankers Association. Most recently, she was elected to the Governing Committee for the Conference on Consumer Finance Law. In 2018, Caren was named one of the “20 Most Powerful Women in Collections” by Collection Advisor, a national trade publication. Caren oversees a blog titled: Consumer Financial Services Litigation and Compliance dedicated to consumer financial services and has been published in a number of publications including the Journal of Taxation and Regulation of Financial Institutions, California State Bar Business Law News, Banking and Financial Services Policy Report and Carolina Banker.  ...LEARN MORE

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