This story appeared in Bank Digest.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has reached a settlement with National Credit Adjusters, LLC (NCA), a privately held company headquartered in Hutchinson, Kan., and its former CEO and part-owner, Bradley Hochstein. According to the Bureau, NCA and Hochstein used a network of debt collection companies to collect consumer debt on the company's behalf, some of which frequently engaged in unlawful debt collection acts and practices that harmed consumers, such as representing that consumers owed more than they were legally required to pay or falsely threatening consumers and their family members with lawsuits, visits from process servers, and arrest.
Under the terms of a consent order, NCA and Hochstein are barred from certain collection practices and Hochstein is permanently barred from working in any business that collects, buys, or sells consumer debt. In addition, the order imposes a judgment for civil money penalties of $3 million against NCA and $3 million against Hochstein, although full payment of those amounts is suspended subject to NCA's paying a $500,000 civil money penalty and Hochstein's paying a $300,000 civil money penalty. NCA and Hochstein consented to the issuance of the order without admitting or denying any wrongdoing.