Civil Penalty Fund
In the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, Congress established a victims relief fund, called the Civil Penalty Fund, to provide money to people who have been harmed by companies that break federal consumer financial protection laws.
About the Fund
When the CFPB takes legal action against a person or company for breaking the law, they may be required to pay money into our Civil Penalty Fund, which is used to help compensate harmed victims who wouldn’t otherwise receive compensation from the defendant in the case.
You could be eligible to receive a payment through the Civil Penalty Fund if:
- You were harmed by an unlawful activity where a fine was imposed in a CFPB case.
- You won’t otherwise receive full compensation from the wrongdoer.
Payments from the Civil Penalty Fund depend on the amount of money available in the fund as well as other factors.
If you’re a victim in a case brought by the CFPB, you can refer to the Payments by Case page to see which payment distributions are currently in process. You can click the case name to find out who to contact about whether you’ll receive a payment.
If the case isn’t listed on that page, the distribution process may not have begun, and you can check back for future updates.
In accordance with the Civil Penalty Fund rule, the Bureau allocated the following amounts to the eligible classes of victims in the following cases and to consumer education and financial literacy programs:
November 29, 2023
Driver Loan $2,863,648
Tempoe LLC $192,259,616
Lexington Law - Class A $1,725,937,273
Lexington Law - Class B $19,000,000
May 30, 2023
All American Check Cashing $8,231,553
RD Legal Funding, LLC $1,403,496
November 29, 2022
BounceBack, Inc., et al. $1,481,773
Frank Ronald Gebase, Jr. $240,995
Performance SLC, LLC, et al. $10,950,818
Hello Digit, LLC $38,220
Think Finance, LLC, et al. $384,010,544
Future Income Payments LLC, et al. $11,086,434
May 27, 2022
Access Funding, et al. $28,409,957
LendUp Loans $39,833,927
BrightSpeed Solutions, Inc $54,000,000
Nov. 29, 2021
College Financial Advisory $4,738,028
Yorba Capital Management, LLC, et al. $860,000
Burlington Financial Group, LLC, et al. $30,406,599
Chou Team Realty, et al. $18,833,119
May 30, 2021
SMART Payment Plan, LLC $6,000,000.00
Katharine Snyder, et al $3,864,000.00
U.S. Equity Advantage $8,400,000.00
Nationstar Mortgage LLC $1,210.57
Omni Financial of Nevada, Inc. $79,437,226.51
Nov. 27, 2020
Main Street Personal Finance, Inc. $1,540,517
Certified Forensic Loan Auditors, LLC; et al. $3,000,000
Timemark Solutions, Inc., et al. $3,762,360
GST Factoring, Inc., et al. $11,718,432
Premier Student Loan Center, et al. $89,366,096
May 30, 2020
Edmiston Marketing, LLC, d/b/a Easy Military Travel $3,468,224
Universal Debt & Payment Solutions, LLC, et al. (Bagga) $4,627,774
Nov. 29, 2019
Universal Debt & Payment Solutions, LLC; et al. $558,674
Andrew Gamber, Voyager Financial Group, LLC, BAIC, Inc., and SoBell Corp. $2,700,000
May 30, 2019
Mark Corbett $9,027,895
Howard Law $35,206,275
Nov. 29, 2018
Federal Debt Assistance Association, LLC, et al. $4,972,389
Triton Management GRoup, Inc. $1,022,298
Richard F. Moseley, Sr., et al. ("Hydra Group") $69,623,528
May 18, 2018
Commercial Credit Consultants, et al. $9,149,286
Prime Marketing Holdings, LLC $6,149,407
Nov. 29, 2017
The Mortgage Law Group, LLP $18,331,737
Commercial Credit Consultants, et al. $21,500,716
Prime Marketing Holdings, LLC $14,451,033May 30, 2017
Orion Processing, LLC, d/b/a World Law Processing, et al. $98,408,416
Siringoringo et al. $20,825,000
Global Client Solutions $8,188,668
Nov. 29, 2016
Morgan Drexen, Inc. and Walter Ledda $33,993,373
May 27, 2016
Morgan Drexen, Inc. and Walter Ledda $98,889,115
Irvine Web Works, Inc. d/b/a Student Loan Processing $7,923,548
Student Aid Institute, Steven Lamont $3,508,900
Nov. 27, 2015
Hoffman Law Group f/k/a Residential Litigation $11,074,842
Student Financial Aid Services, Inc. $9,300,000
Consumer Education and Financial Literacy Programs $15,432,809
May 29, 2015
College Education Services LLC $3,459,336
Union Workers Credit Services, Inc. $18,908,744
National Corrective Group, Inc. $23,262,067
Culver Capital, LLC $421,481
Nov. 28, 2014
Culver Capital, LLC $3,400,434
Amerisave Mortgage Corporation $1,380,470
Global Client Solutions, LLC $107,995,400
May 30, 2014
Meracord LLC $11,542,229
3-D Resorts–Bluegrass, LLC. $6,704,100
Nov. 29, 2013
American Debt Settlement Solutions, Inc. $499,248
National Legal Help Center, Inc. $2,057,983
May 30, 2013
Payday Loan Debt Solution, Inc. $488,815
Gordon, et al. $10,000,000
Consumer Education and Financial Literacy Programs $13,380,000
Payments to harmed consumers
The CFPB takes action against companies and individuals who have broken consumer financial protection laws. If you’ve been harmed, you might be eligible to receive a payment through the Civil Penalty Fund.
The fund is managed by an administrator who reports to the CFPB’s Chief Financial Officer. The administrator is advised by a governance board and the rule that applies to the fund. The administrator assesses which people will receive money and how much they’ll receive. The administrator also supervises the payments.
Every six months, the fund administrator sets aside money for payments to harmed consumers. The administrator can also direct money to consumer education and financial literacy programs.
Consumer education & financial literacy
When all eligible harmed consumers have received full compensation, or when it’s not feasible to make payments to consumers, the CFPB can use Civil Penalty Fund money for consumer education and financial literacy programs.
Civil Penalty Fund by the numbers (since 2010)
Last updated 9/30/23
$783 million in Civil Penalty Fund payments to eligible consumers
1.6 million people have received payments from the Civil Penalty Fund
$3.4 billion collected into the Civil Penalty Fund
Frequently asked questions about the Civil Penalty Fund
The Civil Penalty Fund rule governs how we use funds collected from civil penalties. First, the rule provides that we designate a Fund Administrator who manages the Civil Penalty Fund. Second, the rule explains the conditions under which harmed consumers receive payments from the Fund and the amounts of those payments. Third, the rule establishes procedures that the Fund Administrator follows to decide how money in the Fund is allocated between classes of harmed consumers and consumer education and financial literacy programs. Fourth, the rule explains how payments are distributed to harmed consumers. Finally, the rule requires the Fund Administrator to issue regular reports on how money in the Civil Penalty Fund has been used.
The total of all Civil Penalty Fund deposits through September 30, 2023, is $3,407,743,744. To see how the funds have been used and how much is available for allocation, review our financial reports.
The Civil Penalty Fund Administrator manages the Fund, and they report to the Chief Financial Officer.
The Civil Penalty Fund Administrator is advised by a Governance Board that is chaired by the Deputy Director and includes the Associate Director for Supervision, Enforcement, Fair Lending & Equal Opportunity; the Associate Director for Consumer Response and Education; the Chief Operating Officer; and the General Counsel.
Consumers with uncompensated harm are not limited to receiving only what the person or company that harmed them paid into the Civil Penalty Fund. All civil penalties are deposited into the Civil Penalty Fund where they are pooled and can be used for payments to eligible harmed consumers from any case.
Under the rule, harmed consumers may receive up to the amount of their uncompensated harm from the Civil Penalty Fund. The rule describes what constitutes “uncompensated harm” for purposes of payment. The Fund is not intended as a complete replacement for other sources of compensation. The amount that harmed consumers actually receive depends on how much money is in the Fund and other factors as described in Q7.
To determine the amount of a consumer’s uncompensated harm, the Fund Administrator takes the person’s total “compensable harm,” and subtracts any compensation that the person has already received—or is reasonably expected to receive—for that harm. The Fund Administrator determines the person’s total compensable harm by looking to the terms of the relevant court or administrative order. If the amount of compensable harm cannot be determined based on the terms of the relevant order, the compensable harm generally equals the out-of-pocket losses that resulted from the violation.
Allocating funds means setting aside money for a specific purpose. For the Civil Penalty Fund, the Fund Administrator “allocates” funds when they set aside money for payments to particular classes of harmed consumers, or for use on consumer education and financial literacy programs.
Once the Fund Administrator allocates funds to a class of harmed consumers, the CFPB begins the process to distribute payments to the people in that class. We usually work with payments administrators to identify and locate the harmed consumers in the class and distribute payments. Distribution processing time varies from case to case. For a list of cases currently in distribution, please refer to the table of ongoing cases.
If there is enough money in the Civil Penalty Fund to fully compensate all eligible consumers’ uncompensated harm, the CFPB generally first provides full compensation to all eligible harmed consumers to the extent practicable. then we can allocate remaining funds for consumer education and financial literacy programs, and/or keep money in the fund for future harmed consumers.
If, at the time of a scheduled allocation, there is not enough money available in the Civil Penalty Fund to provide full compensation for all eligible consumers’ uncompensated harm, the Fund Administrator allocates funds equitably among the classes of harmed consumers from the most recent six-month period, who have not yet had an opportunity to receive an allocation from the Fund. The Fund Administrator then allocates funds to classes of harmed consumers from preceding six-month periods if funds remain. If there is not enough money to give full compensation to all eligible harmed consumers who could practicably be paid, no money is allocated for consumer education and financial literacy programs.
The first priority is always to allocate funds to pay harmed consumers. If funds remain after allocating enough money to provide full compensation to all eligible harmed consumers who can practicably be paid, the Fund Administrator may allocate some or all remaining funds for consumer education and financial literacy programs.
The CFPB may use other statutory funds for consumer education and financial literacy and has committed to using funds for these purposes. The Civil Penalty Fund is also, and primarily, used to provide relief to harmed consumers, and we want to make certain that consumers who are harmed by scams and fraud can receive payments. At this time, we are using funds in the Civil Penalty Fund only for payments to harmed consumers.
The Civil Penalty Fund is maintained at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in a non-interest-bearing account.
When the CFPB enforces the law, it or a court may order the company or person that violated the law to take action to remedy the harm it caused consumers. This can include requiring the company or person to compensate people for this harm. This compensation is generally called “redress.” In some cases, we may require the company or person that violated the law to pay the redress directly to consumers. In other cases, we may require the company or person to pay the redress to us, and, in turn, we distribute the redress money to the people harmed by that person or company’s violations.
Civil money penalties and payments to harmed consumers from the Civil Penalty Fund are different. When a company or person that violated the law is ordered to pay a civil penalty, that penalty does not go directly to that company’s or person’s victims, but rather is put in the Civil Penalty Fund. All civil penalties that anyone pays to the CFPB are pooled in this common fund, and the money is used to pay any eligible harmed consumers in accordance with the Civil Penalty Fund rule.
The main difference between redress and Civil Penalty Fund payments is the link between who pays the money and who can receive the money. When a company or person pays redress, that redress money can go only to people harmed by that company or person. When a company or person pays a civil penalty, that money goes into the Civil Penalty Fund and can be used to pay any eligible harmed consumer from any case.
No, the Civil Penalty Fund is not funded by taxes or other money collected from the general public. It is funded by civil penalties, or fines, that the CFPB imposes on companies and/or individuals for violating federal consumer financial protection laws.
Consumers can’t apply to receive money from the Civil Penalty Fund. The CFPB determines which harmed consumers are eligible for the funds based on criteria described in the Civil Penalty Fund rule, which rely on the terms of our court and administrative orders. If a class of harmed consumers is eligible for funds and we don’t have all the information we need to make those payments, we may invite harmed consumers to submit claims. If that’s the case, you’ll find information about submitting a claim for a particular case in the table of ongoing cases.