Scoundrels, Scams, and Cheats Hall of Shame
Despite his threats to do so, Mick Mulvaney interim head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has not hidden the agency’s complaint database from public view. Perhaps he decided to let Kathy Kraninger, Donald Trump’s totally unqualified nominee to succeed him as director, do the dirty deed.
In the meantime, we and other consumer watchdogs noticed that the CFPB has stopped preparing and issuing the monthly reports that analyzed complaint trends, highlighted complaints received about a particular product, and featured data from selected states and cities. The last such report was issued in October 2017.
Bureau officials won’t say why they stopped compiling the reports. Given Mulvaney’s aversion to transparency and contempt for the people’s right to know, we suspect it’s because the reports painted an up-to-date, clear picture of what was going on in the credit and finance markets and made it easy to identify the bad actors in those industries.
Fortunately, although the CFPB is no longer compiling the data, it’s still accessible. So, we accessed it and generated a snapshot that shows what the scoundrels, scammers, and cheats have been up to. As you might suspect, the picture’s not pretty. When we launched our version of the database, we posted a list of the most complained-about companies. Our review of the data revealed that not much has changed: the bad guys are still the bad guys.
This month we’re posting the types of complaints that are most often lodged with the CFPB. Like the scoundrels who perpetrate them, the types of scams and fraud being committed are fairly consistent. The charts on this page show the all-time, 2017, and year-to-date numbers for each type of complaint.
Predictably, filings for 2018 have declined as a result of the CFPB’s decision to stop encourage consumers to file complaints. That decision was one of the factors that motivated us to create and promote our own version of the database. We urge you to use it and to share links to it with your family, friends, and neighbors.
Along with the complaint info, we are, for the first time, posting a sampling of the narratives submitted to the CFPB by consumers who have been victimized by financial institutions. We encourage you to read the narratives because, in many cases, the stories indicate that the lender, servicer, or debt collector involved has violated state and/or federal consumer protection laws.
If the situation described in a narrative is similar to yours or you believe your rights have been violated, we strongly suggest that you contact us to arrange a free consultation that will enable us to evaluate your circumstances and determine if you are entitled to financial compensation. You may contact us by phone at the numbers listed on this page or by clicking or tapping the “Schedule Free Consultation” button.
Strong legal remedies are available to consumers who have been abused or cheated by credit reporting agencies, debt collectors, or mortgage servicers. You should consult the legal team at DannLaw if you believe your rights have been violated. Here’s an overview of the consumer protection laws we use to help our clients seek and secure justice and just compensation:
Credit Reporting. If a credit reporting agency is conveying inaccurate information about the status of your payment history or if a creditor is misreporting your payment history to credit reporting agencies, the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) provides injunctive relief and statutory damages. In addition, violators may be required to pay your legal fees.
Debt Collectors. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) holds collectors strictly liable for making false statements when attempting to collect debts. Violators are subject to statutory fines of $1000 and are liable for attorney’s fees.
Mortgage Servicing. Enacted as part of the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation, the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) and Truth in Lending Act (TILA) govern mortgage servicers. Consumers who have been victims of practices outlawed by the act are eligible to receive actual and statutory damages as well as attorney’s fees.
To learn more about DannLaw’s consumer protection practice and the remedies available to people who have been scammed or cheated click here.
Finally, we recommend that you utilize the database’s search function BEFORE you do business with any bank, mortgage lender/ servicer, credit card issuer, or other types of financial firms. If a significant number of complaints have been filed against the company, you should think twice before proceeding.
The names and the scams are familiar—they’re the companies behind many of the worst consumer frauds and scams ever perpetrated on the American public…Equifax, Wells Fargo, Citi as well as some of our personal favorites at DannLaw, Ocwen, Navient and Nationstar, firms we regularly fight because they refuse to abide by the rules and laws governing mortgage lending and servicing.
Here are the companies that top the Hall of Shame and the number of complaints lodged with the CFPB along with charts denoting the type of complaints filed most often with the CFPB.
- Equifax Inc. 83,252
- Bank of America, National Association 74,221
- Experian Information Solutions Inc. 72,188
- TransUnion Intermediate Holdings Inc. 65,721
- Wells Fargo & Company 62,142
- JP Morgan Chase & Co. 51,139
- Citibank N.A. 41,598
- Capital One Financial Corporation 26,822
- Ocwen Loan Servicing LLC 26,270
- Navient Solutions LLC 24,243
- Mortgage 18,513
Link to Complaint Form
Filing a Complaint
The CFPB accepts complaints through its website and by telephone, mail, email, fax, and referral.
When consumers submit complaints, they select the consumer financial product or service as well as the issue they are having with that product or service from a list. Consumers describe what happened including information like dates, amounts, and actions they or the company has taken, describe their desired resolution and answer questions to help the Bureau and the company understand their issue. Consumers may also submit documents.
The CFPB submits complaints to the company involved. The company reviews the information, communicates with the consumer as needed, and determines what action to take in response. The company may decide to offer monetary compensation, resolve the problem without compensation, offer an explanation and resolve the complaint, or refuse to respond.
Consumers may file complaints related to the following:
- Credit Cards
- Mortgage Lending or Servicing
- Bank Accounts and Services
- Private Student Loans
- Consumer Loans
- Credit Reporting
- Money Transfers
- Debt Collection
- Payday Loans
- Prepaid Cards
- Credit Repair
- Debt Settlement
- Pawn and Title Loans
- Virtual Currency
- Federal Student Loan Servicing
The public may review the complaints in the database via the CFPB website until the agency limits access to it later this year or via the DannLaw search engine on this page. Searches can be conducted by entering the company name, issue, product, and other criteria.
The complaint data displayed will contain an explanation of the issue, a narrative supplied by the consumer who filed the complaint, the company’s response or lack thereof, and other pertinent information. We advise consumers to review the data and consider it before doing business with any financial services firm.