The State AG Report Weekly Update August 22, 2019

2020 AG Elections

Democrat Karen Tallian Announces Bid for Indiana Attorney General

  • State Senator Karen Tallian, a Democrat, has announced her candidacy for Indiana AG in 2020.
  • Senator Tallian has served in the state Senate since 2005, is currently the Senate Democrat caucus chair, and maintains a private law practice.
  • Senator Tallian is the first to Democrat to announce her candidacy. Current AG Curtis Hill, a Republican who is serving his first term, has not officially announced whether he is seeking reelection; Republican John Westercamp announced his candidacy in June 2019.

Consumer Protection

Arkansas Attorney General and CFPB Settle with High-Interest Credit Broker Over Alleged Misrepresentations

  • Arkansas AG Leslie Rutledge and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) reached a settlement with Voyager Financial Group, LLC, BAIC, Inc., SoBell Corp., and their owner (collectively, “Voyager”) over allegations that Voyager brokered high-interest credit contracts with veterans to investors in exchange for rights to future pension payments in violation of the Arkansas Deceptive Trade Practices Act, the Arkansas Constitution, and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010.
  • According to the complaint, Voyager allegedly misrepresented contracts that were void under federal and state law as valid and enforceable to consumers, misrepresented high-interest credit offers as sales of payments, misrepresented timing of payments to consumers, and failed to inform consumers of the applicable interest rates.
  • Under the terms of the proposed stipulated final judgment and order, Voyager is enjoined from brokering, offering, or arranging certain agreements involving pensions, and must pay a $1 civil money penalty to the CFPB, $75,000 to the Arkansas AG’s Consumer Education and Enforcement Fund, and $2.7 million in redress, the latter of which is suspended upon payment of $200,000 in consumer redress, the civil money penalty and the payment to the AG’s Fund.

Colorado Attorney General Reaches Settlement with Debt Management Company and Lender Over Alleged Conflict of Interest

  • Colorado AG Phil Weiser settled with debt management company Nationwide Debt Reduction Services, LLC (“Nationwide”) and lender Sky Bridge Financial, LLC (“Sky Bridge”) over allegations that the companies had shared ownership in violation of state consumer protection laws.
  • According to the AG’s office, Nationwide and Sky Bridge provided lending and debt management services to the same consumers in spite of being wholly owned and operated by the same individuals, which is prohibited under state law.
  • According to the AG’s office, under the terms of the settlement, the companies must issue $175,263 in refunds to consumers, send new advisements and client agreements to remaining customers, and are prohibited from entering into new contracts to provide debt management services or loans in the state.

Labor & Employment

Massachusetts Attorney General Cites Restaurant Chain Over Alleged Labor Violations

  • Massachusetts AG Maura Healey cited Qdoba Restaurant Corporation (“Qdoba”) over alleged child labor law violations.
  • According to the AG’s office, Qdoba allegedly allowed minor employees to work more than 11 hours in a single shift, more than 48 hours in a single week, and later than 10:30 p.m. on a school night, and failed to obtain required permits to hire minor employees, in violation of state child labor laws.
  • According to the AG’s office, the citation requires payment of $409,400 in penalties.

Utilities

 Illinois Attorney General Settles with Alternative Energy Suppliers Over Allegedly Aggressive and Deceptive Sales, Telemarketing, and Door-to-Door Practices

  • Illinois AG Kwame Raoul reached settlements with alternative retail energy suppliers Major Energy Electric Services LLC (“Major”), Eligo Energy IL, LLC (“Eligo”), and Realgy LLC over allegations that they used aggressive and deceptive sales tactics in violation of the state Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act, Telephone Solicitations Act, Automatic Contract Renewal Act, and Prizes and Gifts Act.
  • According to the AG’s office, Major’s sales agents allegedly failed to disclose information such as price and length of contracts; Eligo’s sales agents allegedly failed to disclose rates and fees and made misrepresentations regarding program choices and discounts; and Realgy’s telemarketing sales agents allegedly misrepresented various price-matching and reward programs, and door-to-door representatives misrepresented affiliations with other utility companies and forged customer signatures, among other things.
  • According to the AG’s office, under the terms of the settlements, the suppliers together will provide over $3.1 million in refunds to consumers and are suspended from certain marketing activities.
FacebookTwitterShare