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Starting July 15: Protecting the Monthly Child Tax Credit Payments from Creditors

July 13, 2021

Starting July 15, families will receive each month an advance child tax credit up to $300 per child per month. This article examines existing consumer protections to safeguard payments from judgment creditors’ bank account garnishment and from the United States’ intercept to repay defaulted federal student loans. The article also considers tactics to protect paper check payments from garnishment.

Practice Implications of June 25 Supreme Court Ramirez Decision

June 30, 2021

The Supreme Court’s June 25 Ramirez decision reshapes constitutional standing for federal court FCRA, FDCPA, TILA, TCPA, RESPA and other individual and class cases based on consumer statutes. This article details Ramirez’s practice implications for varied types of consumer injury, provides pleading and proof tips, and explains how initiating a case in state court may alleviate standing problems.

New Protections for Homeowners with VA Mortgages

June 23, 2021

A new VA final rule, effective July 27, provides new rights for homeowners exiting a COVID-19 related forbearance program. Forborne payments will not be due until the end of the mortgage term and are interest-free. This article describes both this new right to defer forborne payments and options for homeowners who cannot afford their regular monthly payments that become due after exiting forbearance.

New Protections for Homeowners with VA Mortgages, Effective July 27

June 23, 2021

This article explains in detail important CFPB amendments to RESPA Reg. X taking effect August 31 affecting mortgage servicer early intervention and loss mitigation requirements. The rule provides new rights to homeowners exiting mortgage loan forbearances or experiencing a COVID-related payment hardships—rights applicable not just to federally insured mortgages, but to almost every home mortgage in America.

New Protections from Foreclosure of Reverse Mortgages

May 18, 2021

A May 6th HUD guidance provides new protections allowing non-borrowing spouses to remain in a home after the spouse borrowing on a reverse mortgage moves to a long-term care facility or passes away. This article details the new protections, examines other foreclosure risks with a reverse mortgage, and sets out borrower rights and strategies to avoid those additional risks of foreclosure.

Bankruptcy’s Role in Alleviating Criminal Justice Debt

May 7, 2021
Unpaid criminal justice debt can have draconian consequences, and this article explains how a bankruptcy filing can sometimes be effective in reducing that debt. Although criminal fines and restitution orders are not dischargeable in bankruptcy, other portions of a filer’s criminal justice debt may be dischargeable. The article also links to several resources covering this topic: a free May 13 webinar, a recent report, and NCLC treatises.

Manufactured Home Creditors’ Unique Exposure to Consumer Claims

April 22, 2021

This article examines nine ways that manufactured home creditors face unique legal exposure to consumer claims and remedies, including recent developments that may increase such creditor liability. Examples are a federal ban on arbitration clauses in manufactured home credit, special statutes making manufactured home creditors liable for warranty violations, statutory damages of tens of thousands of dollars for UCC Article 9 violations, and more.

Cheat Sheet to COVID-19 Bankruptcy Provisions and Sunsets

April 5, 2021

New March 27, 2021, bankruptcy legislation now extends the sunset dates of the three CARES Act bankruptcy provisions. This article explains the new law and then provides a “cheat sheet” listing all ten of the COVID-19 related bankruptcy provisions by sunset date, with links to more detail for each provision and also Public Law and U.S. Code citations.

Supreme Court Issues Expansive Ruling on Personal Jurisdiction

March 29, 2021

A favorable March 25, 2021, Supreme Court ruling allows consumers to bring claims in their home state against out-of-state companies, even where the companies had no contact with the consumer in the consumer’s state of residence. This article explains the Court’s holding and then suggests nine types of cases where the ruling can help advance consumer litigation.

Practice Tools in Response to Latest Supreme Court Bankruptcy Decision

February 22, 2021

A January 14, 2021, Supreme Court decision alters the practice of consumer bankruptcy law as to repossessed property. This article explains the Supreme Court’s ruling and how the consumer bankruptcy practitioner should respond to the ruling’s implications, including the use of four new sample pleadings found in NCLC’s recent digital update to our bankruptcy treatise.

Free Access to New Chapter on Homeowner Rights During COVID Pandemic

February 8, 2021

NCLC’s new chapter on homeowner rights during the COVID pandemic is free to the public for a limited time period. This article summarizes the new chapter, covering the very latest rights and options for those with Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, FHA, VA, RHS, or other mortgages. The chapter being open to the public, all readers can now follow links in the article to more detail in the chapter text.

Challenging Electronic Assent to Arbitration, Robocalls, and More

January 27, 2021

Increasingly, companies seek to bind consumers to arbitration, consent to robocalls, and other terms and conditions through the consumer’s actions on a website. This article reviews an important January court decision, describes surprising facts about bots and “click farms,” and sets out a series of practical steps to challenge consumer assent to terms found on a website.Challenging Electronic Assent to Arbitration, Robocalls, and More

The FDCPA Year in Review: 2020

January 7, 2021

This article reviews a very active 2020 concerning the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). The article focuses on two sets of final Consumer Financial Protection Bureau rules on the FDCPA, one published in November and the other announced in December, and then summarizes all of the relevant 2020 circuit court of appeals FDCPA cases.

New Consumer Bankruptcy Protections Now Effective

January 7, 2021

This article explains the new consumer bankruptcy protections found in the Consolidated Appropriations Act that were effective December 27, 2020: the availability of a chapter 13 discharge despite missed payments, protection of stimulus payments from the bankruptcy trustee, no discrimination of debtors in bankruptcy from CARES Act protections, continued utility service without a deposit, and more.

Getting Money Back for Scammed Consumers

December 15, 2020

This article explains scammed consumers’ best approaches to retrieve their money, depending on the method used for its payment. The article covers unusual payment methods preferred by scammers, such as gift cards, wires, prepaid cards, remotely created payment orders, express mail of cash and money orders, and not just credit or debit cards.