Payments to harmed consumers
When we enforce the law, we or a court may order the defendant to take action to remedy the harm it caused consumers. This can include requiring the person or company to compensate its victims for this harm by providing consumer redress. Obtaining consumer redress is a top priority in any enforcement action.
Whenever we collect a civil money penalty through an enforcement action, that penalty is deposited into our Civil Penalty Fund. The Civil Penalty Fund can be used to compensate victims of unlawful activities who are not otherwise expected to get full compensation, but only when a civil money penalty was actually imposed for those activities. In actions where the company or individual that is alleged to have caused consumer harm cannot pay the full amount of consumer redress, we will seek to obtain the greatest amount of redress possible based on that company’s or individual’s ability to pay as well as appropriate injunctive relief to stop ongoing consumer harm and prevent future harm.
We may also couple that redress with a nominal $1 civil money penalty, so that the consumers in the case may be able to obtain compensation from the Civil Penalty Fund. We will work promptly to provide full redress to eligible harmed consumers from this fund, assuming continued availability of money in the fund.
Payments by case
Payments to harmed consumers can be made when we or a court orders a company that has violated a consumer financial protection law to pay an amount of money to compensate the consumers’ harm. This money is distributed to victims either by us, directly by the violator, or through a third-party administrator.