Category Archives: State Consumer Protection Laws

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Private Arbitration Agreements which Prohibit Public Injunctive Relief Violate Public Policy and are Unenforceable Under California Law

In an April 5, 2017 unanimous opinion, the California Supreme Court (the “Court”) held that private arbitration agreements which prohibit public injunctive relief in any forum are contrary to California public policy and unenforceable under California law. Furthermore, the court held that the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”) did not preempt this rule of California law … Continue reading this entry

Court Limits Use of Zip Codes in Massachusetts Credit Card Transactions

In a recent decision, Tyler v. Michaels Stores, Inc., the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court held that zip codes are “personal identification information” and that a merchant asking for that information during a credit card transaction violates a Massachusetts statute [G.L.c. 93, Section 105(a)] designed to protect consumer privacy, becoming the second state high court, after California, to declare … Continue reading this entry

Don't Forget Common Sense

Today, Foley & Lardner LLP issued a Legal News Alert for our clients regarding the recent decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court that ZIP Codes are “personal identification information” and therefore it is a violation of Massachusetts law for a merchant to ask for that information during a credit card transaction. See Tyler v. Michael’s Stores, … Continue reading this entry

Deception Alleged by Florida Attorney General

Is your institution providing clear and conspicuous notice of fees? Are you consistently reviewing company marketing materials to ensure that all claims are accurate and supported with adequate substantiation? The Florida Attorney General announced that Florida has entered into settlement agreements with five prepaid debit card companies following an investigation into allegations that consumers supposedly were deceived about … Continue reading this entry

Ringing in the New Year in 2013: California’s Homeowner's Bill of Rights Law Takes Effect

Dubbed as the “Homeowner’s Bill of Rights,” on July 11, 2012, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law AB 278/SB 900 marking the first U.S. state to adopt into law the residential mortgage foreclosure reform principles outlined in the February 2012 National Mortgage Servicing Settlement with the nation’s top five mortgage servicers. The Homeowner’s Bill of … Continue reading this entry

Seventh Circuit Limits Application of State Consumer Act

The United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit granted summary judgment in favor of Home Depot in a case limiting the application of the Wisconsin Consumer Act. Plaintiffs had argued that Home Depot’s failure to remove a credit card charge of $9,761.64 on a Home Depot credit card issued by Citibank violated sections … Continue reading this entry

Ninth Circuit Narrows FDCPA Restrictions on Collection Letters

In Riggs v. Prober & Raphael, 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11631 (9th Cir. Cal. June 8, 2012), the Ninth Circuit clarified the scope of its restrictions on validation notices under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) and consequently under California’s Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“Rosenthal Act”).   Both the FDCPA and the Rosenthal Act seek to … Continue reading this entry

Court Permits Creditor to Charge and Collect Convenience or Expedited Payment Fees

In recent years, many creditors instituted convenience or “expedited payment” fees, charging consumers for payments made by telephone and/or online rather than by mail. However, some state regulators, including those in Colorado, Texas and Wyoming, have taken the position that such fees are incident to the extension of credit (requiring disclosure as a “finance charge”) and … Continue reading this entry

The Ninth Circuit Permits Cumulative Recovery Under the FDCPA and California's Rosenthal Act

The recent Ninth Circuit decision, Gonzalez v. Arrow Financial Services, LLC, — F.3d —, 2011 WL 4430844 (9th Cir Sept. 23, 2011), addresses several issues relating to claims brought under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) and examines that statute’s interaction with the corresponding California debt collection statute, the Rosenthal Act.… Continue reading this entry

Illinois Attorney General Sues Mortgage Rescue Companies For Alleged UDAP And Other Violations

On behalf of the people of the State of Illinois, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan filed five lawsuits on September 27, 2011 against a host of companies, individuals, and lawyers engaged in mortgage rescue work. The cases — People v. Exelpol Management & Consulting, Inc., People v. Loan Litigators International, LLC et al., People v. ZeTrust Legal Services, … Continue reading this entry

Arkansas Supreme Court Affirms Change in Maximum Interest Rate

Earlier this Summer, the Arkansas Supreme Court affirmed the effectiveness of the 89th Amendment to the Arkansas Constitution, which was approved by Arkansas voters last November. For consumer credit, the amendment permits creditors other than federally insured depository institutions to charge interest on loans or contracts up to a maximum rate of 17% per annum.  Previously, the Arkansas Constitution only … Continue reading this entry

Ninth Circuit Issues Ruling on Limitations of Preemption

This week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that the Rees-Levering Act (also known as the California Automobile Sales Finance Act), a California law regulating debt collection and repossession, is not preempted by the National Bank Act. In Aguayo v. U.S. Bank, ___ F.3d ___, No. 09-56679 (9th Cir. Aug. 1, 2011), the … Continue reading this entry

Fifth Circuit Interprets Texas Constitution, Upholds Variable Rate Home Equity Loan

On July 22, 2010, the Fifth Circuit affirmed a Western District of Texas opinion in favor of a lender and loan servicer in a lawsuit brought by mortgagors who alleged that the terms of their home equity loan violated the Texas Constitution. Cerda v. 2004-EQR1 LLC and Barclays Capital Real Estate Inc., — F.3d —-, 2010 … Continue reading this entry

Indiana Consumer Protection Law Violates The Commerce Clause

In a January 28, 2010 opinion, Midwest Title Loans, Inc. v. Mills, the Seventh Circuit has affirmed a permanent injunction issued by the district court invalidating a section of Indiana’s version of the Uniform Consumer Credit Code for violating the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution. Indiana added a provision to the Code in 2007 … Continue reading this entry