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Fourth Edition of 50 State Guide on Student Loan Servicing Regulations Now Available

An important resource for financial services compliance professionals has been updated. The Fourth Edition of the 50 State Guide on Student Loan Servicing Regulations is a quick reference guide and resource for student loan servicers regarding the regulations specific to the industry, along with pending legislation, litigation, and court rulings. More ›

Popular Video Conferencing Zoom App Hit with CCPA Class Actions

We recently reported on the California Attorney General's ongoing and active enforcement of the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) despite COVID-19 and the availability of private actions. In Robert Cullen v. Zoom Video Communications, Inc., N.D. Cal., No. 20-cv-02155, filed on March 30, 2020, plaintiff alleges that Zoom failed to properly safeguard the personal information of him and other users of its software application (Zoom App) and video conferencing platform. More ›

CCPA Litigation Has Arrived and COVID-19 Will Not Delay Enforcement

Despite concerns expressed by the business community, enforcement of the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) will not be delayed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. California Attorney General Xavier Becerra recently clarified that his office "is committed to enforcing the law upon finalizing the rules or July 1, whichever comes first. … [W]e are all mindful of the new reality created by COVID-19 and the heightened value of protecting consumers' privacy online that comes with it. We encourage businesses to be particularly mindful of data security in this time of emergency." More ›

Governors of California and New York Announce Enhanced Consumer Protection Agendas for 2020

The Governors of California and New York have announced 2020 policy agendas that aim to expand consumer protections in response to what they describe as federal inaction, roll backs, and failures. We explore these proposed changes in detail below. More ›

Senate Hearing Panel Suggests a Bipartisan National Data Privacy Standard Could Include a Private Right of Action

A recent hearing at the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation explored the contours for a comprehensive and bipartisan federal data privacy law. Titled "Examining Legislative Proposals to Protect Consumer Data Privacy," the hearing featured an all-female panel of experts, including two former FTC leaders, and representatives from industry, academia, and consumer rights groups.

The panel discussion centered on current privacy legislation proposed by U.S. Senators Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) which would provide consumers with greater security, transparency, choice and control over their personal information on- and off-line, and provide the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) with additional resources and authority to regulate. The hearing and written testimony are available on the Senate Committee's website. More ›

New Edition of 50 State Guide on Student Loan Servicing Regulations Now Available

An important resource for financial services compliance professionals just received a new update. The Third Edition of the 50 State Guide on Student Loan Servicing Regulations—a quick reference guide and resource for student loan servicers regarding the regulations specific to the industry, along with pending legislation, litigation, and court rulings—now also includes language of the rules implementing state student loan servicer laws. More ›

Franz Kafka, Sisyphus, and Foreclosures: Bank of America Fined $45 Million by Bankruptcy Court For Violation of Automatic Stay

"Franz Kafka lives. This automatic stay violation case reveals that he works at Bank of America." Thus begins an opinion stretching over 100 pages in length in which United States Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Klein fined Bank of America over $45 million for what he found to be an egregious violation of the automatic bankruptcy stay.

According to the order, the Sundquists, at the behest of advice given them by Bank of America, defaulted on their real property loan in 2009 so that they could be considered for a loan modification. The court found that this was followed by a "'multi-year 'dual tracking" game of cat-and-mouse" by Bank of America, which included repeated requests for information which had grown stale and incomprehensible denials of applications. Most central to the court's holding was that, although the Sundquists filed a Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition in June 2010, Bank of America proceeded with a foreclosure sale even though it had notice of the Sundquists' bankruptcy case. Clearly meaning to send a signal which would be heard in the bank's highest offices (in addition to Kafka, the opinion also references the myth of Sisyphus and the Watergate scandal), the court was clearly moved by the emotional distress documented by the plaintiffs (which included discussions of suicide attempts). More ›

Nearly Fifty Debt Collector Calls in Two Weeks a Legitimate FDCPA Practice

A debt collector seeking to collect on a GAP credit card debt placed 49 telephone calls over the course of 18 days. The cardholder filed suit, arguing the calls constituted harassment under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). Specifically, the cardholder stated that he had to stop what he was doing every time the phone rang, which not only disrupted and distracted him from his daily activities, but also caused frustration and anxiety. 

A California federal court disagreed, finding the call frequency did not constitute harassment under the FDCPA because the debt collector waited at least 90 minutes between each call, did not contact the cardholder more than five times in a single day, and never left any voicemails. The court concluded the volume of calls resulted from the collector's inability to reach the cardholder, and that the number of attempts were legitimate and reasonable in light of the collector's unsuccessful efforts to reach the cardholder. Download a copy of the decision issued in Hinderstein v. Advanced Call Center Technologies, et al., Case No. CV-15-10017-DTB (C.D.Cal. Feb. 27, 2017)

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