Postings

Last-ditch effort to prevent auto lending discrimination fails
Consumer Action and its allies wrote to Congress on April 16 to plead that it not interfere with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s efforts to prevent auto loan discrimination. The Bureau’s “guidance” to car lenders sought to end a common discriminatory practice to charge some borrowers more in interest and fees, regardless of their creditworthiness (“dealer mark-ups”). Even though these discriminatory violations still occur, the Senate on April 18 moved to eliminate the 2013 guidance document, allowing the practice to continue. These discretionary auto dealer mark-ups result, in some cases, in African Americans and Latinos paying more than similarly situated white borrowers.

Stringent safety requirements needed before driverless cars hit the road
In a March 5 letter to Senate leadership, coalition advocates conveyed strong objections to the lack of safety protections in proposed driverless car legislation and urged Senate leaders to make essential improvements to the AV START Act (S.1885). The groups warned that prioritizing the protection of private investments in unproven technologies instead of protecting public safety could have dangerous consequences, and there are numerous critical concerns regarding the rushed deployment of driverless cars. (Last week the earlier warning took on new urgency when an automated Uber vehicle killed a pedestrian in Arizona.)

Advertising recalled vehicles as ‘safe’ is bad business for consumers
Most recalled consumer products are illegal to sell until the product has been repaired or replaced. However, many recalled vehicles are allowed to continue operating on the road while a fix is pending. These cars and trucks may also be sold before the recalled repair has been done. We think that’s wrong and dangerous for consumers. Coalition advocates joined together in asking the Federal Trade Commission to prohibit auto dealers, including retail giant Car Max, from engaging in false advertising regarding the safety of unrepaired recalled cars.

Cars now safer to rent, thanks to mom-turned-advocate
A mother’s 11-year crusade resulted in President Barack Obama signing a bill that requires rental car companies to repair vehicles under safety recall orders before renting them to consumers. It is now illegal, under federal law, for a rental car company with a loaner or a rental car fleet of 35 vehicles or more, to rent, loan, or sell an unrepaired recalled rental or loaner car until the safety defects have been repaired.

Lawmakers open the door for discrimination when buying a car
Consumer Action joined consumer advocates in opposing the Reforming CFPB Indirect Auto Financing Guidance Act (H.R. 1737) which allows racially discriminatory car lending practices. If the bill passes, it could restore a system that routinely charges black and Latino borrowers hundreds of dollars more for car loans than similarly-qualified white borrowers.

Don’t restrict the CFPB’s oversight of auto financing issues
In the latest effort to restrict the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) jurisdiction, legislators target the agency’s regulatory power over the auto financing industry. The “Reforming CFPB Indirect Auto Financing Guidance Act” (H.R. 1737) places unnecessary restrictions on the agency and is designed to hamper the agency’s attempts to bring fairness and transparency to the auto lending market.

Policy riders threaten vital public safeguards, hijack budget process
A coalition of 178 groups is urging President Barack Obama and all 535 members of Congress to oppose any federal appropriations bill that contains inappropriate and ideological policy riders. These riders would jeopardize policies that restrain Wall Street abuses; guarantee clean air, food and water; ensure safe consumer products and continued access to vital health care services; keep homes and workplaces safe; prevent consumer rip-offs; and hold big corporations accountable for wrongdoing.

Keep auto insurance affordable for everyone
The Federal Insurance Office (FIO) must establish a strong affordability standard for low- and moderate-income Americans, according to nearly 50 organizations from 23 states and DC that jointly submitted comments to FIO. The groups called on FIO to move forward with its proposal to collect data directly from insurance companies and review the cost of basic liability auto insurance for tens of millions of financially strained drivers.

Recalled vehicles should not be rented to consumers
Those who frequently drive rental cars should feel more secure behind the wheel. Senator Claire McCaskill introduced an amendment that will force rental companies to perform recalls on their vehicles before they can be driven by consumers. An earlier GOP proposal would have allowed unsafe, potentially dangerous vehicles to remain in service or sold as long as the customer was warned of the recall.

In favor of expanding the CFPB’s reach in the auto industry
In light of its recent supervision report detailing auto-lending discrimination uncovered at banks, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is proposing to oversee larger nonbank auto finance companies for the first time at the federal level.

Quick Menu

Facebook FTwitter T

Consumer Help Desk

Advocacy