The CFPB has issued a new circular (2023-01) that addresses the circumstances under which “negative option marketing practices” can violate the CFPA prohibition of unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts or practices.  

The circular uses the term “negative option” to refer to “a term or condition under which a seller may interpret a consumer’s silence, failure to take an affirmative action to reject a product or service, or failure to cancel an agreement as acceptance or continued acceptance of the offer.” … Continue Reading

A Texas federal court has dismissed a class action lawsuit against Opportunity Financial, LLC (“OppFi”) alleging OppFi violated Texas usury law by charging interest on loans it made through a partnership with a state-chartered bank at rates above the maximum rate permitted by Texas law.  The plaintiff alleges that the partnership was a “rent-a-bank” scheme to evade state law and that OppFi, rather than its bank partner, was the “true lender” on the loans.… Continue Reading

The New Jersey Attorney General recently announced a settlement in its lawsuit against Yellowstone Capital LLC, its parent company, and various subsidiaries and affiliates alleging that the defendants violated the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act (CFA) and the New Jersey Regulations Governing General Advertising (Advertising Regulations) in connection with marketing and providing merchant cash advances (MCAs). … Continue Reading

Mark Brnovich, the Arizona Attorney General, recently issued an opinion regarding whether earned wage access (EWA) products are “consumer lender loans” under the state’s Consumer Lenders Act (CLA) such that a person who makes, procures, or advertises an EWA product must be licensed as a “consumer lender.”  The AG concluded that an EWA product offered as a no-interest and non-recourse product is not a “consumer lender loan” under the CLA.… Continue Reading

On December 2, a non-profit advocacy organization filed a lawsuit in a California federal district court seeking to enjoin the California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (DFPI) from enforcing the final regulations (Regulations) issued by the DFPI to implement California’s commercial financing disclosure law.  SB 1235, which was signed into law in 2018, requires consumer-like disclosures to be made for certain commercial financing products, including small business loans and merchant cash advances. … Continue Reading

In a notice of “Intent to Make Preemption Determination under the Truth in Lending Act (Regulation Z),” the CFPB announced that it is seeking comments on its preliminary determinations that the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) does not preempt certain provisions of the New York Commercial Finance Disclosure Law (CFDL) or the commercial financing laws of California, Utah, and Virginia. … Continue Reading

Although it has not yet been a week since a Fifth Circuit panel issued its decision holding that the CFPB’s funding mechanism is unconstitutional, the defendants in three CFPB enforcement matters are already attempting to use the decision as grounds for dismissal of the CFPB actions.  

The Fifth Circuit’s decision in Community Financial Services Association v.Continue Reading

A California state court has overruled the demurrer filed by Opportunity Financial, LLC (OppFi) to the cross-complaint filed by the California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (DFPI) in which OppFi asked the court to reject the DFPI’s “true lender” challenge.  In its cross-complaint, the DFPI alleges that California usury law applies to loans made through OppFi’s partnership with FinWise Bank (Bank) because OppFi, and not the Bank, was the “true lender.”… Continue Reading

In a new blog post, “Buy now, pay later – and comply with the FTC Act immediately,” the FTC reminds nonbank participants in the buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) market, such as retailers, BNPL providers, marketers, and debt collectors, that they can be liable for violations of Section 5 of the FTC Act based on the information they communicate to consumers and how they communicate such information.… Continue Reading

Last week, the CFPB issued its long-awaited report on buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) products.  While the report identifies consumer risk and harms arising from BNPL products, it does not discuss any actions that the CFPB plans to take based on the report.  Those follow-up actions were left for Director Chopra to preview in his prepared remarks on the report and for the CFPB to announce in its press release on the report. … Continue Reading