On February 2, 2016, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the US Department of Justice (DOJ) concluded an investigation of an auto lender for compliance with the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA). There was a finding of discrimination against borrowers on the basis of race and national origin.
The lender agreed to make up to $21,900,000 available for compensation of affected borrowers, but did not admit or deny any wrongdoing as part of the consent order. The lender further agreed to change its financial incentives to dealers for marking up interest rates and to implement a compliance management system to bring its practices in line with federal consumer financial laws including the Equal Credit Opportunity Act. This case demonstrates the importance of sound policies and procedures to ensure compliance with all regulations governing consumer financial products and services.