CFPB Flags COVID-Related Consumer Complaints in Latest Bulletin

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau today issued a consumer complaint bulletin that focused on complaints related to certain COVID-19 relief efforts, including the suspension of monthly payments for federal student loans, the issuance of economic impact payments and supporting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s eviction moratorium.

With regard to EIPs, the CFPB said it received complaints related to overdraft charges customers incurred after advances made by financial institutions to enable consumers to take full advantage of their payment were reversed. “Financial institutions often reported providing both electronic and written notices at the time of the advance. Consumers, on the other hand, reported not receiving notices and expressed confusion because they did not proactively opt-in to overdraft protection programs,” the report noted.

“In response to these complaints, several financial institutions reiterated the intention of the advance was so that consumers could make full use of their stimulus payments. In some limited circumstances, financial institutions refunded overdraft fees charged to the consumers’ accounts, stating they were refunding the fees as a courtesy.”