Posted in Analysis Coronavirus Debt Pro Publica Safety Net

Debt collectors have made a fortune this year. Now they’re coming for more.

After a pause for the pandemic, debt buyers are back in the courts, suing debtors by the thousands. by Paul Kiel and Jeff Ernsthausen Earlier this year, the pandemic swept across the country, killing 100,000 Americans…

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Analleli Solis (Pu Ying Huang for The Texas Tribune)
Posted in Coronavirus Debt Investigations News Pro Publica

The loan company that sued thousands of low-income Latinos during the pandemic

A monthslong investigation revealed that Oportun Inc., which was founded to help Latino immigrants build credit, routinely uses lawsuits to intimidate a vulnerable population into keeping up with high-interest loan payments — even amid COVID-19. by…

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Posted in Banks Columns Credit Debt Rathke: Chief Organizer Report

Microfinance is now a mega-mess

by Wade Rathke New Orleans   A little less than a decade ago, in mid-2011, ACORN International stirred up a bit of a hornets’ nest by opposing the international development consensus in a series of reports we…

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An Oportun storefront in Austin, Texas. The company announced on Tuesday that it would drop all the lawsuits it has filed against borrowers who fell behind on payments, including during the pandemic. (Allie Goulding/The Texas Tribune)
Posted in Coronavirus Credit Debt Pro Publica

They sued thousands of borrowers during the pandemic — Until we started asking questions

Months into the pandemic, a lender that markets to Latino immigrants continued to sue borrowers after they lost jobs and missed payments. But they reversed course when we started asking questions. by Kiah Collier and Ren…

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Posted in Banks Debt News Pro Publica Safety Net

Capital One and other debt collectors are still coming for millions of Americans

As the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Americans got protection from evictions, foreclosures and student debt. But debt collectors have continued to siphon off their share of paychecks from those who still have jobs. by Paul Kiel and…

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Posted in Columns Debt Rathke: Chief Organizer Report

Why can’t we fix payday lending?

Pearl River   We’ve been fighting payday lending for over fifteen years in Canada with some success as well a truckload of frustration. The issue has been in our sights for several decades in the United…

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Posted in Bailout 2020 Coronavirus Debt News Pro Publica

One thing the pandemic hasn’t stopped: aggressive medical-debt collection

U.S. hospitals are in the spotlight for being on the frontline of fighting the pandemic. But in the shadows, debt collection operations continue, often by the same institutions treating coronavirus patients, all while unemployment and uncertainty…

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Posted in Banks Coronavirus Debt News Poverty Pro Publica Safety Net Wages

Coronavirus put her out of work, then debt collectors Froze her savings account

Kim Boatswain’s tax refund could have helped her get through the coronavirus slowdown. But debt collectors seized it. There are few options for Texans like Boatswain whose money was taken just before the state temporarily banned…

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Posted in Courts/justice Debt New Debtors Prisons News Policing Pro Publica

They loan you money. Then they get a warrant for your arrest.

THE NEW DEBTORS PRISONS High-interest loan companies are using Utah’s small claims courts to arrest borrowers and take their bail money. Technically, the warrants are issued for missing court hearings. For many, that’s a distinction without…

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