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Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Stories

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DISCLAIMER: As the COVID-19 public health situation evolves, new regulations are being continually issued. This page/story/information may not include the most recent information.

Protecting your finances during the Coronavirus Pandemic

Federal, state, and local governments are working to respond to the growing public health threat of coronavirus, or COVID-19. The CFPB and other financial regulators have encouraged financial institutions to work with their customers to meet their community needs.

Additionally, the CFPB is committed to providing consumers with up-to-date information and resources to protect and manage their finances during this difficult time as the situation evolves.

Financial resources for consumers

Communities continue to announce the temporary closure of businesses, schools and other public facilities or events. While these actions are necessary steps to help reduce exposures, it may bring financial uncertainty for many people who could experience a loss of income due to illness or workplace closures.

If you are facing financial difficulties as a result of the pandemic, we have resources to protect and manage your finances.

  • Protect yourself financially – As Americans prepare for the possible spread of the coronavirus or COVID-19, here are resources to protect yourself financially. Read in EnglishLeer en Español (Updated 3/16/2020)
  • Consumer complaints – Since our inception, we’ve built a robust and technologically forward complaint process that handles approximately 30,000 complaints every month. Even in these challenging times, we are ready to send your complaints to companies to help you get the response you need. (Updated 3/17/2020)
  • Protecting your credit during the coronavirus pandemic – Your credit reports and scores play an important role in your future financial opportunities. Learn how to manage and protect your credit during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. (Updated 3/19/2020)
  • Dealing with debt: Tips to help ease the impact – We have resources you can use to address issues related to debt collection during the coronavirus pandemic. (Updated 3/20/2020)
  • Tips for financial caregivers – We have resources for financial caregivers helping people who cannot manage their money or property themselves during the coronavirus pandemic. (Updated 3/20/2020)

General guidelines

For updates about the virus and how to stay safe visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s coronavirus webpage .

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Michigan license number:   DM-0016282 Available to the public and licensed in Michigan.

Section 13(1)  When a licensee establishes a debt management plan for a debtor, the licensee may charge and receive an initial fee of $50.00

Section 13(2)  A licensee shall attempt to obtain consent to participate in a debt management plan from at least 51%, in number or dollar amount, of the debtor’s creditors within 90 days after establishing the debt management plan. If the required consent is not actually received by the licensee, the licensee shall provide notice to the debtor of the lack of required consent and the debtor may, at its option, close the account. If the debtor decides to close the account, any unexpended funds shall be returned to the debtor or disbursed as directed by the debtor.

Sec. 14. (1) A contract between a licensee and debtor shall include all of the following:

(a) Each creditor to which payments will be made and the amount owed each creditor. A licensee may rely on records of the debtor and other information available to it to determine the amount owed to a creditor.

(b) The total amount of the licensee’s charges.

(c) The beginning and termination dates of the contract.

(d) The principal amount and approximate interest charges of the debtor’s obligations to be paid under the debt management plan.

(e) The name and address of the licensee and of the debtor.

(f) Any other provisions or disclosures that the director determines are necessary for the protection of the debtor and the proper conduct of business by a licensee.

Sec. 18. (1) In addition to the fee described in section 13(1), a licensee may charge a reasonable fee for providing debt management services under a debt management plan. The fee under this subsection shall not exceed 15% of the amount of the debt to be liquidated during the express term of the plan.

(2) A licensee may offer a debtor the option to purchase credit reports or educational materials and products, and charge a fee to the debtor if the debtor elects to purchase any of those items from the licensee.  Fees charged under this subsection are not subject to the 15% limitation on fees described in subsection (1).

(3) Except for a cancellation described in subsection (4), in the event of cancellation of or default in the performance of the contract by the debtor before its successful completion, a licensee may collect $25.00 in addition to any fees and charges of the licensee previously received by the licensee. This $25.00 fee is not subject to the 15% limitation on fees and charges under subsection (1).

(4) A contract is in effect when it is signed by the licensee and the debtor and the debtor has made a payment of any amount to the licensee. The debtor has the right to cancel the contract until 12 midnight of the third business day after the first day the contract is in effect by delivering written notice of cancellation to the licensee. A cancellation described in this section is not subject to, and a licensee shall not collect, the fee described in subsection (3).

(5) If a debtor fails to make a payment of any amount to a licensee within 60 days after the date a payment is due under a contract, the licensee may, in its discretion, cancel the debt management contract if it determines that the plan is no longer suitable for the debtor, the debtor fails to affirmatively communicate to the licensee the debtor’s desire to continue the plan, or the creditors of the debtor refuse to continue accepting payments under the plan.

(6) A licensee shall not contract for, receive, or charge a debtor an amount greater than authorized by this act. A person that violates this subsection, except as the result of an inadvertent clerical or computer error, shall return to the debtor the amount of the payments received from or on behalf of the debtor and not distributed to creditors, and, as a penalty, an amount equal to the amount overcharged.

530 W Allegan Street, 7th Floor
Lansing, MI  48909-7720
877-999-6442

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