The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has released a new report showing a significant decline in medical collection accounts on credit reports between 2018 and 2022. The report suggests that debt collectors are moving away from reporting medical bills to credit bureaus, and that internal credit bureau rules regarding medical bill reporting may also be a factor. The report also highlights concerns regarding the verification of consumer data, which may be contributing to the decline in medical collection tradelines.
According to the CFPB, medical collection tradelines declined by 37 percent between 2018 and 2022. This decline is significant and suggests that debt collectors may be changing their practices when it comes to medical bill reporting. The CFPB's report points to several potential factors that may be contributing to this decline.
One potential factor is recent internal credit bureau rules regarding medical bill reporting. These rules may be making it more difficult for debt collectors to report medical bills to credit bureaus. Additionally, some debt collectors may be choosing to prioritize other types of debt over medical debt, as it may be more difficult to collect.
Another potential factor highlighted in the CFPB report is the verification of consumer data. Debt collectors may be finding it more difficult to verify consumer data when it comes to medical debt. This may be due to a lack of information from healthcare providers or a lack of documentation from consumers. Without accurate information, debt collectors may not be able to report medical debt to credit bureaus.
Despite the decline in medical collection tradelines, the CFPB estimates that as of 2021, there was approximately $88 billion in medical bills on consumer credit reports. This highlights the ongoing issue of medical debt in the United States, and the impact it can have on consumers' credit scores and financial wellbeing.
The CFPB is closely monitoring medical billing and collection practices, and is working to ensure that consumers are treated fairly and appropriately. The agency has taken action in the past to address issues related to medical debt, including taking action against debt collectors who engaged in unfair, deceptive, or abusive practices.
In conclusion, the CFPB's new report on medical collection tradelines highlights the ongoing issue of medical debt in the United States, and the challenges that debt collectors face when it comes to reporting medical bills to credit bureaus. While the decline in medical collection tradelines may be concerning, it is important to remember that there is still a significant amount of medical debt on consumer credit reports. The CFPB's ongoing monitoring of medical billing and collection practices is critical to ensuring that consumers are treated fairly and appropriately, and that debt collectors are held accountable for their actions.
If you face medical collections issues, you should discuss your legal rights with a Las Vegas Consumer Protection Attorney.
The CFPB recently published a report regarding how the national credit bureaus – Equifax, Experian, and Trans Union – handle medical collection credit reporting. The report analyzes the credit bureaus' decision to refrain from reporting unpaid medical collections for one year and remove all paid medical debts from consumers' profiles. The report also discusses the credit bureaus' upcoming moratorium on reporting medical debts under $500 starting next year.
The CFPB found that when the bureaus remove unpaid medical debts under $500, it will erase a majority of individual medical tradelines from consumers' profiles. The report also found that removing paid collections is less likely to have a substantial effect because collectors routinely fail to mark accounts as paid despite their legal obligations under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and Fair Credit Reporting Act. As a result, the CFPB will continue to monitor the situation and may take steps to block or limit the reporting of medical debt.
If you have medical collections on your credit reports or are receiving collection calls for unpaid medical debts, you should contact a Las Vegas debt collection attorney to discuss your legal rights.
Debt Collectors Ordered to Pay $4 Million Settlement Due to Illegal Collection Tactics
On May 23, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the New York Attorney General’s Office filed a Stipulated Judgment for $4 million against a group of debt collectors who engaged in illegal collection tactics against consumers. The Complaint alleged the collectors violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act by threatening consumers with arrest and imprisonment if they failed to pay their debts, artificially inflating balances, and harassing debtors, their friends and families.
Under the stipulation, the collectors are permanently banned from debt collection operations and must pay $2 million to the CFPB victim relief fund and $2 million to the State of New York. In addition, the stipulation provides a $1 million penalty if the collectors fail to pay the damages.
If you are the victim of harassing or abusive debt collection calls, you should contact a Las Vegas Debt Collection Lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal rights.
Equifax, Experian, and Trans Union Announce Important Changes to Medical Collections Reporting
The major credit bureaus – Equifax, Experian, and Trans Union – announced they will no longer report paid medical debt on consumer credit reports, effective July 1, 2022. In addition, the bureaus stated they will increase the timeframe to begin reporting open medical collections from six months to one year. Finally, the credit bureaus announced they will not report medical collection accounts under $500 starting in 2023. The national credit bureaus estimate these changes will result in removing approximately 70% of medical collections from consumer credit reports.
If you have medical collections reporting on your credit profiles or are receiving collection calls for unpaid medical debts, you should contact a Las Vegas consumer attorney to discuss your legal rights.
Ninth Circuit Issues Decision Regarding Tenant Screening Reports and Criminal Records
On February 10, 2022, the Ninth Circuit affirmed a California District Court decision in Moran v. The Screening Pros, LLC, finding that while a credit reporting agency (CRA) must remove criminal charges and related information from a tenant screening report within seven years of the case filing (not the case dismissal), the CRA did not violate the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) because its failure was not negligent of willful.
In Moran, Plaintiff submitted a housing application in February 2010. The landlord denied his application because the background check revealed three dismissed criminal charges and a conviction. While the oldest charge was filed in 2000, it was dismissed in 2004. Plaintiff argued that the inclusion of the 2000 charge in the screening report violated the FCRA because it was more than seven years old. The CRA claimed the 2004 dismissal date was the operative date under the statute. While the Ninth Circuit found that the appropriate date to analyze when a CRA should remove criminal records is the date the DA filed the charges, the court upheld the dismissal of the case because Plaintiff failed to show the violation was negligent or willful.
If you received a lease denial from a tenant screening report showing old criminal charges or inaccurate tenant information, you should contact a Las Vegas credit attorney as soon as possible.
The CFPB recently released its annual report regarding consumer credit reporting complaints, covering January 2020 through September 2021. The report criticizes the national credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian, and Trans Union) for failing to meet their Fair Credit Reporting Act obligations and engaging in practices that have led to increased consumer complaints.
The report details the credit bureaus’ failed attempts to correct incomplete and false credit information when receiving consumer disputes, especially those coming from credit repair companies and other third-party credit assistance programs. Such inaccurate credit information includes accounts related to identity theft, incorrect debt collection items, the effect of data breaches, and false account details.
If you are experiencing false credit reporting, you should contact a Las Vegas credit reporting lawyer to discuss your legal rights.
A Las Vegas man was sentenced yesterday to 111 months in federal prison for aggravated identity theft and the use of an unauthorized access device. The defendant, Fausto Teixeira Martins Neto, placed skimming devices on ATMs and cash-out transaction dispensing terminals in casinos on the Las Vegas Strip. He would then encode the stolen data onto forged credit cards and initiate cash advances and purchase luxury items. Through their fraud and identity theft schemes, Mr. Neto and his co-conspirators stole over $2.28 million.
Mr. Neto is the fourteenth out of twenty-one individuals charged in a 2017 indictment for their roles in the conspiracy. The remaining seven charged individuals are currently at large.
If you believe you are a victim of identity theft or credit card fraud, you should contact a Las Vegas identity theft attorney as soon as possible to discuss your legal rights.
The Nevada Legislature enacted a new law targeting medical debt collections. The new law takes effect on July 1, 2021. The law defines a “medical debt” broadly to include financing or extension of credit if the sole purpose for the credit is to purchase goods or services from a health care facility or provider.
The new law prohibits debt collectors from taking any action to collect a medical debt for the first 60 days. During this period, the collector must send the consumer a written notification by registered or certified mail that includes the name of the medical facility, the date of service, the principal amount of the debt, the collection agency’s name, and whether the agency purchased the debt or it is collecting it on behalf of the medical provider.
The collection agency may accept voluntary payments during the 60-day notice period only if the consumer initiates the contact and the collection agency tells the debtor that they are not required to pay during the notice period and that it will not report the debt to the credit agencies. The law does not provide the delivery method for this notice. If a consumer chooses to make a voluntary payment toward the medical debt, such a payment does not extend the statute of limitations, admit liability, or waive any defense to the debt.
Finally, under the new law, debt collectors may not take confessions of judgment, file civil lawsuits for less than $10,000, or charge collection fees of more than 5% of the debt.
If you face medical collections, you should discuss your legal rights with a Las Vegas debt collection lawyer to ensure you are protected.
Nevada’s Attorney General released a statement cautioning Nevada consumers against posting personal information on social media, including their vaccination cards. Vaccine cards include your full name, date of birth, and patient number, all of which identity thieves can use to steal consumers’ identities. You shouldn’t even post the location of your vaccination, according to health officials.
The announcement came as part of a broader initiative by the Nevada Attorney General’s office to reduce scams and fraud related to COVID-19 vaccination and treatment. The Attorney General emphasized that Nevada consumers should be extremely cautious regarding their personal health information, especially during these times.
If you believe you are a victim of identity theft, you should contact a Las Vegas consumer attorney as soon as possible to discuss your legal rights.
Vehicle Lender Fined $4.75 Million for Inaccurate Credit Reporting of Millions of Accounts
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently fined Santander Consumer USA, Inc., an automobile lender, $4.75 million for its failure to accurately report consumer data to the major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and Trans Union). Santander allegedly reported millions of incorrect default dates and failed to report accurately whether loans were open, paid in full, or charged-off.
According to the CFPB, Santander lacked written credit reporting policies before 2018, which is shocking considering the millions of consumer credit tradelines to which Santander reported. Without admitting fault, Santander agreed to correct the reporting errors and establish and implement written credit reporting policies.
If you are a victim of Santander’s illegal credit reporting, you should contact a Las Vegas credit attorney to discuss your rights under federal law. If you have a wrongful credit reporting claim, you may receive damages of up to $1,000 per defendant, and you do not have to pay for your attorney’s fees or costs out-of-pocket.