CFPB Releases 2020 Consumer Complaints Report
Last month, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) released its annual report to Congress summarizing consumer complaints received by the CFPB in 2020. In its report, the CFPB noted that consumer complaints increased by 54 percent when compared with 2019. The CFPB attributes the increase in complaints to the impact of COVID-19 on the financial services industry and notes that, starting in April 2020, consumers began to submit upwards of 3000 complaints per month mentioning “coronavirus.”
Maybe more interesting, however, are the complained about financial service sectors and products highlighted by the CFPB’s report, as these may hint toward to the CFPB’s enforcement priorities under President Biden’s administration. In particular, the report cited credit and consumer reporting as well as debt collection as the two most complained about areas for consumers. With respect to consumer reporting in particular, the CFPB, in a press release issued in conjunction with the report, took issue with the handling of complaints by credit reporting agencies, noting that while agencies previously provided detailed responses to complaints, in 2020, the agencies failed to provide complete and accurate responses to many complaints.
If nothing else, the report underscores the importance of consumer complaint monitoring and responsiveness, particularly as the CFPB appears prepared to ramp up its enforcement activity in 2021.
You can find a copy of the CFPB’s report here.
You can find a copy of the CFPB’s press release on its complaint report here.