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Credit Discrimination Still Alive But Days Are Numbered CFPB Says

If a lender turns up his nose at you regarding a credit transaction because you feel discriminated because of age, race, national origin, or sex, then you need to wag your tail and get some help.

It is against the law for a lender to discriminate in any aspect of a credit transaction. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) Office of Fair Lending and Equal Opportunity is working over-time to stop illegal discrimination. 

Here is what the CFPB was up to last year to fight the financial discrimination menace:

▪ To protect consumers and better understand issues facing lenders, we engaged in significant outreach with industry, civil rights advocates, consumer groups, and other stakeholders to ensure a diverse set of viewpoints are incorporated into our work.

▪ We protected consumers by working with other government regulators and agencies to ensure companies reimbursed harmed consumers and put tools and processes in place to protect consumers.

▪ We encouraged lenders to find ways to expand access to credit in responsible ways, including to consumers with limited proficiency in English.

The financial market is always changing and the CFPB is responsible for overseeing many products and lenders. As a result, we re-prioritize our work from time to time, to make sure what we’re doing focuses on the areas of greatest risks to consumers.

Going forward, we will continue to identify areas of new and emerging fair lending risks, and we’ll work to monitor institutions for compliance in the following areas.

Here is what the CFPB has on the table for 2017:

Redlining: We will work to evaluate whether lenders have intentionally discouraged prospective applicants in minority neighborhoods.

Mortgage and student loan servicing: We will determine whether some borrowers who are behind on their mortgage or student loan payments have more difficulty working out a new solution with the servicer because of their race, ethnicity, age, or gender.

Small business lending: In establishing the CFPB, Congress expressed concern that women-owned and minority-owned businesses may experience discrimination when they apply for credit, and has required the CFPB to take steps in ensuring their fair access to credit. Because small businesses are the backbone of our economy, we are focusing on how to make sure small business owners, including women-owned and minority-owned businesses, can better access lending.

The CFPB wants to tell you to share your experience or you may submit a complaint online or by calling (855) 411-2372 if you have a problem with a mortgage, student loan, or other credit product.

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