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Military travel lender and servicer settle with CFPB
The CFPB has announced settlements with Edmiston Marketing, LLC, also called Easy Military Travel, its principal, Brandon Edmiston, and USA Service Finance, LLC (USASF). Easy Military Travel, which was located in Murray, Kentucky and is no longer operating, offered and extended financing for airline tickets to military servicemembers and their families and was owned and managed by Edmiston. USASF, which is located in Mayfield, Kentucky, is a company that services travel-related loans, including loans made by Easy Military Travel, for servicemembers.
The Bureau found that Easy Military Travel and Edmiston misrepresented the true cost of credit in violation of the Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010. The consent order issued against Easy Military Travel and Edmiston requires restitution to servicemembers and their families who paid the hidden finance charges by imposing a suspended judgment for restitution in the amount of $3,468,224 and a $1 civil money penalty.
The Bureau found that USASF, which serviced travel loans made by Easy Military Travel, engaged in deceptive practices in violation of the CFPA by overcharging servicemembers and their families for a debt-cancellation product for loans financing airline tickets made by Easy Military Travel and purchased and serviced by USASF. The Bureau also found that USASF violated Regulation V, which implements the Fair Credit Reporting Act, because it never established, reviewed, or updated any written policies or procedures regarding the accuracy and integrity of the consumer information it furnished to consumer reporting agencies.
The consent order against USASF requires it to provide redress to borrowers who were overcharged for the debt-cancellation product, including paying $54,625 in restitution to borrowers with no outstanding balance on their loans and issuing additional restitution in the form of account credits to borrowers with outstanding balances. The consent order also requires USASF to pay a civil money penalty of $25,000 to the Bureau. The consent order prohibits USASF from collecting on or selling the travel loans purchased from Easy Military Travel. The consent order also requires USASF to establish and update reasonable written policies and procedures for the accuracy and integrity of consumer information it furnishes to consumer reporting agencies.