The attorney general of Virginia reached a settlement late last month with a handful of online lenders and two debt collection operations — Bradley Goldberg & Miller, LLC and U Solutions Group, LLC — over the offering of unlawful open-ended credit plan loans and engaging in unlawful debt collection practices including contacting borrowers’ employers and implementing wage garnishments.
The debt collectors have agreed to a permanent injunction banning them from engaging in any debt collection activity in Virginia and agreed to pay $75,000 in civil penalties and $10,000 in attorneys’ fees. The collectors were accused of emailing consumers in an effort to collect on open-ended loans originated by the lenders and contacting the individuals’ employers to implement wage assignments and collect money directly from the consumers’ paychecks. The collectors were accused of violating the Virginia Consumer Protection Act by by implementing illegal wage assignments and by misrepresenting that that these loan debts were valid.
“Open-end credit plan loans are particularly troublesome because they can trap consumers in a cycle of debt that can take years and thousands of dollars to break,” said Attorney General Mark Herring. “Consumers should be wary of these loans, particularly when the terms allow for aggressive debt collection tactics like wage garnishments.”
The names of the lenders involved in the settlement are: Field Asset Service Team, LLC; VIM Holdings, LLC; MR Capital Group, LLC; Nascent Holdings, LLC; B Financial, LLC; and DTS Capital, LLC.