Category Archives: Unfair & Deceptive Acts & Practices (UDAP), including Discrimination

Study Shows Disclosures Can Boomerang and Produce Unintended Consequences

by Jeff Sovern Some years ago, I wrote an article in which I speculated that disclosing to consumers that consumers rarely redeem rebates might cause consumers to disregard rebate offers.  Better-known scholars, like Ian Ayres and Oren Bar-Gill, have expressed similar thoughts.  Well, a new study suggests that the contrary is true. Molly Mercer of DePaul's […]

Dennis Hirsch Paper on Big Data and the FTC’s Unfairness Authority

Dennis D. Hirsch of Capital has written That's Unfair! Or Is It? Big Data, Discrimination and the FTC's Unfairness Authority, 103 Kentucky Law Journal (2015). Here is the abstract: Big data and data analytics (“big data”) can produce many social and economic benefits.  But they can also generate privacy injuries and harmful discrimination.  The governance of […]

Watch the CFPB’s Payday Lending Hearing

The CFPB's field hearing on payday lending is underway, and is being livestreamed at the Bureau's website. Watch it here.

Amato and Willis op-ed in L.A. Times

Lauren Willis (of Loyola Los Angeles) and Theresa Amato (of the Fair Contracts Project) have a great op-ed in today's Los Angeles Times on what to do about consumer financial illiteracy. "There are dozens of entities devoted to educating you about all things financial," they write, "[b]ut none of it is working very well." Financial […]

Troubling sale of Corinthian Colleges set to close soon

by Maura Dundon (Senior Policy Counsel, Center for Responsible Lending) The sale of Corinthian Colleges (the for-profit college chain that operates Everest, WyoTech, and Heald) to the student loan debt collector ECMC is poised to close today. The deal has raised serious concerns about the fate of Corinthian students and whether the new entity represents […]

David Lazarus in the Los Angeles Times on Debt Collectors Renting Out Prosecutor Letterhead

by Deepak Gupta In today's Los Angeles Times, consumer columnist David Lazarus takes a look at the practice of for-profit debt collectors renting out the seal and letterhead of local California prosecutors — the target of a new class-action lawsuit that our firm filed yesterday in federal court in San Francisco. The practice was condemned in […]

ABA Issues Formal Ethics Opinion on Prosecutors Who Rent Out their Letterhead to Debt Collectors

by Deepak Gupta Since its inception, this blog has covered the pernicious practice of prosecutors who rent out their name and authority to private for-profit debt collectors. As readers may recall, these debt collectors use official-looking letterhead to threaten consumers who have accidentally bounced checks for household purchases  — consumers are told they'll face criminal […]

Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jeff Gelles’s Series on Sundance Vacations and Its Efforts to Silence Internet Critics

The main story is here, and sidebars on efforts to silence internet critics can be found here (quoting fellow blogger Scott Michelman) and here. An excerpt: [The consumers] agreed to pay $16,600 in principal and interest, with seven years of monthly $195 installments. In return, Sundance promised 30 weeks of "resort area condominium accommodations" in […]

A Comment on an American Tort Reform Association CPA Roundtable Event

by Jeff Sovern Back in April, the American Tort Reform Association had a roundtable discussion about UDAP statutes with FTC Commissioner (and former George Mason professor) Joshua Wright, Joanna Shepherd-Bailey of Emory, Peter Holland of Maryland Law School, and Cary Silverman of Shook Hardy & Bacon. You can watch it here. Given the host, you […]