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Coalition Efforts

Consumer Action is working on these important issues along with other organizations. If you would like to know more about these issues, please see "More Information" at the end of each article.
 

Postings

A major victory for cheated students on borrower defense regulations
A federal judge sided with consumer advocates and ruled that Education Secretary Betsy DeVos' delay of a key student borrower protection rule was improper and unlawful. Judge Moss also rejected a request to postpone enforcement of the Borrower Defense Rule by an association of for-profit colleges. This meant the 2016 Obama-era regulation aimed at providing relief for scammed student-loan borrowers took effect immediately, despite efforts by the Department of Education and the for-profit college industry to delay it.

Consumer advocates oppose loosening rules for Fintech providers
Consumer Action joined a coalition of 50 public interest groups in sharply criticizing the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) proposal to gut important consumer protection rules, especially for fintech companies, arguing the agency does not have the authority to create potentially unlimited exemptions from the very regulations that the CFPB is obligated to enforce.

Trump’s anti-discrimination official uses hate speech as recent as 2016
Controversial blog posts written by senior Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) official, Eric Blankenstein, have caused outrage from advocates and CFPB staffers who are calling on interim director, Mick Mulvaney, to fire the official. Blankenstein is in charge of enforcing fair-lending laws that are intended to prevent discrimination and is facing criticism for a series of racially provocative comments spanning the last 14 years.

Advocates warn that HUD’s disaster relief program is too limited in scope
In an official letter to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), advocates urge HUD to improve its efforts to expedite the process for borrowers in disaster areas to access loss mitigation. While a good start, The Disaster Standalone Partial Claim program does not do enough for borrowers in disaster areas that have not yet fully recovered, and the program includes vague and unnecessary eligibility requirements that will impose unnecessary barriers to mortgage relief.

ED's latest regulatory rollback favors scam schools over students and taxpayers
Consumer Action joined more than 60 organizations and advocates in submitting joint comments on the U.S. Department of Education's proposal to eliminate the gainful employment rule that protects students and taxpayers from spending money on career education programs that do not prepare students for gainful employment as required under federal law. The coalition urged the Department to abandon their proposal to eliminate the existing rule and instead start properly enforcing the current rule.

Protect consumers from excessive airline fees
Consumer Action joined seven other coalition advocates in urging Congress to support the bipartisan FAIR Fees provision that was included in S.1405, the Federal Aviation Administration Reauthorization Act of 2017. Under the FAIR Fees provision airlines would be prevented from charging flight change and cancellation fees that are unreasonable and disproportionate to the cost of providing the service. The Department of Transportation would also develop standards for helping assess the reasonableness of other common airline fees.

Senate should reject Kraninger for CFPB Director
Eighty civil rights and consumers groups wrote to Congress, urging a “no” vote on the nomination of Kathy Kraninger to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Kraninger has no record of protecting consumers or standing up to powerful Wall Street special interests—key traits we all want in America’s chief consumer advocate. Americans deserve a consumer champion at the CFPB, not someone will continue Mick Mulvaney’s anti-consumer agenda.

It’s buyer beware with the SEC’s latest best interest proposal
Coalition advocates called on the Securities and Exchange Commission to clarify its proposed “best interest” standard, and asked that it make the required disclosures much easier to understand for consumers. They also asked the SEC make the standard no less stringent than the Advisers Act fiduciary standard. Otherwise, unsuspecting investors may not be aware that their advisers are selling them products they don’t need in order to turn a profit.

Payday alternative loans shouldn’t permit cycle of high-cost debt
In a letter to the National Credit Union Administration, more than 100 coalition advocates oppose changes that would permit credit unions to charge an unlimited number of fees on short-term loans, resembling payday loan debt.

Health insurance tax would hit seniors hard
An approximate $22 billion health insurance tax (HIT) is scheduled to impact 20 million seniors and disabled individuals enrolled in Medicare Advantage in 2020. In a letter, coalition advocates urged Congress to delay the HIT for 2020, otherwise millions of American seniors and others with health insurance coverage could face a major premium increase, including $500 in additional annual premiums for the typical Medicare Advantage couple.

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