CFPB Orders Car Hop to Pay $6.4 Million for Damaging Customers’ Credit

CFPB Orders Car Hop to Pay $6.4 Million for Damaging Customers’ Credit Car Hop is one of the largest “buy-here, pay-here” car dealers with about 50 locations in 15 states. Here in California, Car Hop has retail lots in Daly City, Hayward, Vallejo, Richmond, Sacramento, National City and Escondido. Car Hop, which advertises cars for as little as $99 down, sells very old, high mileage cars at extremely high prices and at extremely high interest rates. Today, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) announced it entered into a Consent Order with Car Hop and its financial arm, Universal Acceptance Corporation...

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Report on How Errors in Criminal Background Checks Hurt Workers

This month, the National Consumer Law Center issued a report on problems with companies that offer criminal background checks to employers. Over 90% of employers now run such checks on some employees and 73% run checks on all potential employees. The Internet has facilitated the means by which hundreds of companies offer criminal background checks using data purchased from cities, counties and states. One company’s website brags it has 345 million criminal records available. About sixty-five million adults in the US have some sort of criminal record. The number one problem is that the data often has incorrect information leading...

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California Improves its Data Security Breach Law

As we all know, businesses collect identifying information on millions of consumers, which is stored in computerized databases. From time to time, hackers get into the system and steal the personal information. Or an employee loses a laptop containing such information. The thieves then use the personal information to open credit card accounts in consumers’ names. Or order merchandise using the consumers’ information. The result is identity theft on a large scale. In 2002, California enacted the first law requiring any business that experiences a breach of its security system such that names, addresses, credit card number or social security...

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How to Deal with Zombie Debt

WikiHow, a how-to-manual that you can edit, has excellent advice on dealing with zombie debt-old debts that cannot legally be collected through lawsuits. Companies buy the debt for pennies on the dollar and then use nefarious tactics to get consumers to pay. Tactics include harassing calls, threats to sue, and re-aging the debt (faking the date of last activity on the account) so as to report the debt on the consumer’s credit reports. WikiHow outlines steps to take and not take. For example, don’t acknowledge the debt, do not make a payment on the debt, ask for proof the debt...

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Old Consumer Debt: When Is It Too Old To Collect?

Debt collectors often buy old consumer debt and aggressively try to collect it. Sometimes the debt collector will threaten to sue, or threaten to put the debt on your credit report. How valid is that warning? How do you know when debt is too old to collect? Liz Weston’s article in MSN Money explains that there are two limitations periods you should know about. First, the statute of limitations restricts the time in which a creditor can sue on a debt. In California, creditors must sue within four years to collect on promissory notes, contracts and credit card debt. If...

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