ACE Cash Express Ordered to Pay $10 Million for Bullying Payday Borrowers
The Consumer Federal Protection Bureau has ordered one of the country’s largest payday lenders, ACE Cash Express, to pay $10 million in fines and refunds for bullying their customers to make their monthly loan payments.
Consumers have reported that ACE used illegal debt collection tactics to get overdue borrowers to pay on their loans, including harassing phone calls and threats of lawsuits or criminal charges.
“ACE used false threats, intimidation, and harassing calls to bully payday borrowers into a cycle of debt,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray in a statement. “This culture of coercion drained millions of dollars from cash-strapped consumers who had few options to fight back.”
ACE was ordered to pay $5 million in customer refunds and an additional $5 million in fines to the CFPB’s Civil Penalty Fund.
According to the Consent Order, the CFPB is ordering the company to end illegal debt collection threats and harassment. ACE will no longer be able to pressure consumers to take out a new loan to pay off their old loans under the regulations from the CFPB.
ACE consumers affected by the case will receive notification from a third party on how to make a claim for their refunds.