Archive for the ‘CFPB’ Category

Senior "Specialists" Often Swindlers

April 26, 2013

Sometimes titles are important: M.D., PhD., J.D. Then again, there are faux titles like “senior specialist,” which often tell me that some financial exploitation is afoot.

For years, regulators have been monitoring brokers who use titles like “retirement planning specialist.” It’s hard to say which of these designations are meaningful since they are so loosely regulated. In many cases, the financial services industry doesn’t want customers to know that little training or expertise is involved.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently issued a report on these titles, which helps to illuminate a specialized form of financial abuse:

The Bureau found that there are more than 50 different senior designations that financial advisers use to indicate that they have advanced training or expertise in the financial needs of older consumers. These designations can confuse older consumers, who are already at risk for deception and fraud.”

“With such a bewildering array of titles and acronyms, it is no wonder that older Americans are confused and misled by these titles,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray.

“Today’s report underscores the need for consistent high-level standards of training and conduct for those advisers who want to acquire a bona fide senior designation.”

Full Article and Source:
Senior Specialists Often Swindlers

See Also:
Read “Senior Designations for Financial Advisors”

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Ohio Resident Questions Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) Integrity

December 26, 2012

I am copying below three e-mails which I received from representatives of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) concerning the reason why the CFPB’s “privacy attorneys” blackened out what it did from the material which the CFPB now posts online at http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=CFPB-2012-0018-1047.

You can easily determine exactly what these attorneys blackened out by comparing pages 3 and 5 of the redacted version posted by the CFPB to the same pages of the unredacted version which I post online at http:\\home.roadrunner.com\~tvfields\UnredactedCFPBSubmission.pdf.

By making this comparison, you can verify the following:
• NOT redacted from page 3 is the reference to my father by the line which reads “The second example is represented by the page copied below from the medical record of my father.”
• NOT redacted from page 5 are the signatures of my father, Dr. Steinmetz, Nurse Nemeth and Dr. Sonneborn.
• What was redacted includes (1) the mention of an attorney’s involvement, (2) the mention of the attorney’s relationship to the parties, (3) the identity of Boca Raton Community Hospital, (4) all references to the fact that the patient was on a morphine drip, under a Do Not Resuscitate order, and just hours from dying of cancer.
• What remains after the redaction leaves false impressions about what was redacted. For example, it leads some people to wrongly suppose that what was redacted on page 5 was filed with the court as the patient’s Will and then contested as such. It leads others to wrongly suppose that the patient had not made out and saved his Will before these notes were entered into the medical record.

Considering what was and was not redacted, I have concluded that, contrary to the reason given in these e-mails, the redactions were NOT to protect the personal privacy of others.

To make this point even clearer, I post online at http:\\home.roadrunner.com\~tvfields\ReasonableRedactions.pdf what these redacted pages might have looked like if the purpose of the redaction was just to protect the personal privacy of others.
~ Tom Fields

—– E-Mails Received from the CFPB —–
From: CFPB_Ombudsman@cfpb.gov 7:42 PM
To: tvfields@oh.rr.com
Subject: RE: Update re. Request for Congressman LaTourette’s Assistance

Mr. Fields — Thank you for sharing this email with our office. It appears that you unfortunately may not have received the subsequent email that we sent to you, which explains that the information you requested be posted contains confidential information. Todd Vanlaere, who is posting the comments, offered to post your comment without the confidential information if you wish to resend it to him. Again, he can be reached at: todd.vanlaere@cfpb.gov.

We are attaching our previous email for your reference.

Thank you again for contacting the Ombudsman’s Office, CFPB Ombudsman’s Office
Tel: 855 830 7880 (Toll-free)
Fax: 202 435 7888
consumerfinance.gov
*************************

From: Todd.Vanlaere@cfpb.gov [mailto:Todd.Vanlaere@cfpb.gov]
Sent: Wednesday, September 05, 2012 3:54 PM
To: tvfields@oh.rr.com
Subject: RE: Request for Clarification

Dear Mr. Fields:

I just wanted to touch base with you and let you know that I’ve received your email, and I am aware of your concerns about your submission. Your concerns are being addressed and I anticipate that I will be able to post your submission soon, but please advised that there will be some redaction. If you’d like me to send you the final redacted version of what our privacy attorneys clear to post prior to posting it, I’m happy to do so.

Thanks,
Todd
*************************

From: Todd.Vanlaere@cfpb.gov [mailto:Todd.Vanlaere@cfpb.gov]
Sent: Thursday, September 06, 2012 9:20 AM
To: tvfields@oh.rr.com
Cc: CFPB_Ombudsman@cfpb.gov; Hubert.Humphrey@cfpb.gov; Brett.Kitt@cfpb.gov
Subject: re. Request for Clarification

Dear Mr. Fields:

I have attached a redacted copy of what you have submitted to us. As a matter of policy, we redact comments that discuss individuals other than the commenter to protect their personal privacy. Therefore, as you can see, a lot of your document has been redacted. Per your request, I will not post anything for public viewing until you approve it.

Thanks,
Todd