Servicemembers At Failing For-Profit Schools Not Protected By Veterans Affairs

Servicemembers At Failing For-Profit Schools Not Protected By Veterans Affairs

When a for-profit college closes its doors, students are often left with hefty student loan tabs and little recourse. Some of those borrowers may be eligible for a discharge of their debts through the Dept. of Education, but others – like the thousands of veterans who used their GI Bill benefits to finance their education – are simply out of luck, often losing their chance to obtain a degree, thanks in part to failures within the Department of Veterans Affairs. [More]

Expansion Of Military Lending Act Closes Loopholes Exploited By Predatory Lenders

Expansion Of Military Lending Act Closes Loopholes Exploited By Predatory Lenders

Nearly a decade after legislation was put in place to protect U.S. military personnel and their families from predatory financial products, the Military Lending Act received a much-needed update to close loopholes often exploited by shady lenders to skirt the rules and put the financial lives of servicemembers at risk. [More]

CFPB Reminds Retailers They Can’t Accept Military Allotments For Certain Purchases

CFPB Reminds Retailers They Can’t Accept Military Allotments For Certain Purchases

Allotments allow military servicemembers to automatically direct some of their paycheck to parties of their choosing, ideally for savings, insurance premiums, housing payments, and support of dependents. Until recently, allotments could also be used to make retail purchases, but such transactions weren’t covered by many of the legal protections that come with traditional payment methods like electronic checks and debit cards. Recently enacted rules now prohibit the use of allotments for buying personal property, and federal regulators are reminding retailers they have to follow the law. [More]

Military Personnel Face Student Loan Issues Despite Required Protections

Military Personnel Face Student Loan Issues Despite Required Protections

The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) provides a number of protections for military personnel and their families when it comes to private and federal student loans. While these benefits aim to alleviate the burden servicemembers face when paying back their educational debts, a new report from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau shows that many student loan servicers continuously fail to uphold their end of the SCRA requirements.  [More]

10 Things We Learned About The University Of Phoenix’s Alleged Military Marketing Strategy

10 Things We Learned About The University Of Phoenix’s Alleged Military Marketing Strategy

It’s no secret that for-profit colleges receive a large chunk of their revenue from military education benefits. To deter unscrupulous for-profit colleges from unfairly targeting these prospective students, the government has imposed several limitations on just how these companies can recruit servicemembers. But a new report shows that one of the nation’s largest proprietary education institutions – The University of Phoenix – spends millions of dollars to allegedly skirt those rules. [More]

Senators Introduce Legislation To Close Federal Funding Loophole Exploited By For-Profit Colleges… Again

Senators Introduce Legislation To Close Federal Funding Loophole Exploited By For-Profit Colleges… Again

Legislators continued their crusade to rein in the abuses of predatory for-profit college institutions by introducing a measure today that would close a funding loophole that often led the schools to target certain consumers in order to pad their bottom line. [More]

CFPB Sues Auto Lender For Aggressive Debt Collection Tactics Against Servicemembers

CFPB Sues Auto Lender For Aggressive Debt Collection Tactics Against Servicemembers

By now it should come as no surprise that lenders shelling out thousands of dollars to help consumers make purchases for things like houses and cars often use lies and threats in attempts to recoup those funds. And while those tactics might result in some payments, they will also likely draw the ire of federal regulators. [More]

(Hammerin Man)

Legislators Once Again Trying To Delay New Lending Protections For Military Personnel

The Department of Defense is trying to do something good for servicemembers by closing loopholes in the Military Lending Act that can leave military personnel vulnerable to predatory lenders. But these safeguards are now the target of a Congressman who has received substantial campaign contributions from payday lenders. [More]

(Hammerin Man)

House Panel Strikes Provision That Would Delay Added Military Lending Act Protections

Yesterday we reported that Congress would make a decision whether or not it would intervene to slow the Department of Defense’s work to create new rules aimed at closing loopholes in the Military Lending Act that often leave military personnel vulnerable to predatory financial operations. Thankfully, legislators saw the need for more protections regarding military lending and determined the rules could go into effect as planned. [More]

(This Year's Love)

Military Allotment Processor Must Refund Servicemembers $3.1M For Charging Hidden Fees

A company aimed at preserving the financial well-being of deployed servicemembers by processing payments to creditors on the consumers’ behalf instead contributed to customers’ financial distress by charging millions of dollars in hidden fees, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau alleges in a new complaint. [More]

(Hammerin Man)

Protecting Military Servicemembers From Predatory Loans Is A National Security Issue

In recent years, we’ve written a number of stories about laws aimed at protecting active-duty servicemembers and their families from predatory loans and the businesses that try to take advantage of loopholes in these rules. Some readers have asked why members of our armed forces merit protections not available to civilians. But this isn’t about just doing something nice for our soldiers; it’s about removing a threat to national security. [More]

(frankieleon)

22 States Ask Defense Dept. To Do More To Protect Servicemembers From Predatory Lenders

When the Military Lending Act was introduced in 2007, it aimed to prevent predatory lenders from gouging military personnel with exorbitant interest rates and mountains of fees. While those protections have proven to be successful in many ways, lenders have since learned how to work around specific limits of the law. Now, attorneys general from 22 states are asking the Department of Defense to do more to shield servicemembers from unscrupulous lenders. [More]

The CFPB, along with AGs from Virginia and North Carolina took action against Freedom Furniture & Electronics and its related companies for alleged illegal debt collection practices involving servicemembers.

CFPB: Retailer Allegedly Using Illegal Debt Collection Practices Against Servicemembers Must Refund $2.5M

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau continues its fight against companies that continuously take advantage of members of the military, despite protections afforded to them under federal laws. Regulators’ latest victory? A settlement demanding over $2.5 million in consumer relief from three companies that allegedly used illegal tactics to pilfer money from servicemembers and their families. [More]

(Hammerin Man)

New DoD Protections Aim To Keep Shady Businesses From Taking Advantage of Military Members

Members of the military — particularly younger members from lower-income backgrounds — are too often the target of shady, predatory businesses looking to take advantage of their youth and inexperience with finances. The Military Lending Act offers some protections, but these operators find ways to get around the law. On Friday, the U.S. Dept. of Defense took steps to eliminate some of those exploitations by creating reforms to the current military discretionary allotment system. [More]

Sketchy Retailer Caught Scamming Servicemembers With Pointless Fees

Sketchy Retailer Caught Scamming Servicemembers With Pointless Fees

A discount retailer that came under fire last month for its questionable lending and marketing practices received a slap on the wrist from federal regulators for allegedly tricking thousands of servicemembers into paying fees for legal protections they already had and for certain services that the company failed to provide. [More]

Sallie Mae, Navient To Pay $97M To Settle Servicemember Student Loan Violations

Sallie Mae, Navient To Pay $97M To Settle Servicemember Student Loan Violations

Taking advantage of members of the military isn’t looked upon lightly by federal regulators. This idea was driven home today by the Depts. of Education and Justice, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., who jointly announced a sizable settlement against student loan servicers Sallie Mae and Navient for overcharging and imposing excessive fees to military members.
[More]

New System Addresses Military Members’ Complaints Of Higher Education Abuse

New System Addresses Military Members’ Complaints Of Higher Education Abuse

It’s hard to believe some higher education institutions deceptively target veterans and servicemembers, but it does happen. To better ensure veterans’ and servicemembers’ input is being heard the federal government has launched a new reporting system to streamline consumer complaint investigations. [More]

JetBlue Offers $1 Military Fare Through Today, Although It Comes With A Surprising Number Of Restrictions

JetBlue Offers $1 Military Fare Through Today, Although It Comes With A Surprising Number Of Restrictions

JetBlue is offering an amazing deal to members of our armed forces in honor of National Military Appreciation Month, but once you get past that jaw-dropping $1 fee, it starts to look like they outsourced the fine print to Macy’s. Here are the restrictions: