Collector - May 2018 - 14

FYI

Timely Response to Complaint
by Debt Collector (%)

Percentage of complaints
as a share of total
consumer contacts.

6

YES
NO

Source:
So
urce: C
CFPB
FPB Co
Consumer
nsumer Co
Complaint
mplaint Dat
Database
aba e

When the Data is Not Enough
ACA's recent white paper asserts that the CFPB has failed to contextualize the number of
complaints lodged with the bureau within the larger picture of the debt collection industry.

T

he Consumer Financial
Protection Bureau has been
soliciting and cataloging
consumer complaints related to debt
collection since July 2011.
ACA's white paper, A Review of Debt
Collection Complaints Submitted to the
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's
Complaint Database in 2017, asserts
that the CFPB fails to contextualize the
number of complaints lodged with the
CFPB within the larger picture of the debt
collection industry. 
The credit and collection industry makes
approximately 1 billion consumer contacts
per year, and the CFPB's data fails to provide
context within these expansive margins.
For example, ACA's analysis shows the
total number of debt collection complaints
received by the CFPB represents an incredibly
small number of consumers (0.005 percent)
who had contact with the debt collection
industry in 2017 and are remarkably
consistent with other financial services
industries. Further, the complaints account
for only 0.06 percent of all Americans
estimated to have a debt in collection.

14

Of the debt collection complaints
received, ACA's analysis also demonstrates
that the CFPB's data suggests that many
of the issues consumers complain about
are associated with the technical aspects
of credit, outstanding debt and procedural
aspects of debt collection. In fact, based
on the CFPB's own data, categories that
measure the most negative stereotypes
about the debt collection industry,
such as harassment or illegal practices,
represent an exceptionally small number
of responses.
In fact, the number of consumers
complaining about these categories
declined from 2016 to 2017. This finding
stands in stark contrast to the misleading
narrative about the debt collection
industry being fostered by the CFPB.
"Given that the CFPB has branded itself
as a data-driven agency that promotes
transparency, this analysis underscores
the critical need for the CFPB to do a
significantly better job of making clear
the limitations of the data it collects
and reports," Josh Adams, Ph.D., ACA's
director of research, wrote in the report.

ACA has also continually noted in
the past that the CFPB very broadly
defines a "complaint" as "submissions
that express dissatisfaction with, or
communicate suspicion of wrongful
conduct by, an identifiable entity related
to a consumer's personal experience
with a financial product or service."
Additionally, it's important to note
that the CFPB does not verify the
complaints it receives from consumers
for accuracy. As such, these practices
can artificially inflate the number of
debt collection complaints, yet the
CFPB continues to publicly tout its
consumer complaint data and uses
the raw number of debt collection
complaints to imply evidence of
widespread industry harm. 
ACA's new research initiative aims
to collect more original data about the
credit and collection industry. The goal
of this exclusive research and analysis is
to quantify the ways that debt collectors
help consumers and the overall economy.
To read ACA's complete report, please
visit http://bit.ly/2DQ6Y3v.

ACAINTERNATIONAL.ORG


http://www.bit.ly/2DQ6Y3v http://www.ACAINTERNATIONAL.ORG

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Collector - May 2018

Upfront
Industry News
Best Practices
FYI
Collection Tips
Off to a Running Start
On the Ball
ACA International’s 2018 Convention and Expo Highlights
Calendar
Honor Roll
Building a Case for Continuous Education
Hire Like a Pro
Getting Ahead
ACA Responds to Misleading ACLU Report on Debt Collection Industry
ACA Wins Legal Challenge Against FCC’s TCPA Declaratory Ruling and Order
Compliance
ACA SearchPoint
Last Word
Collector - May 2018 - Cover1
Collector - May 2018 - Cover2
Collector - May 2018 - 1
Collector - May 2018 - 2
Collector - May 2018 - 3
Collector - May 2018 - Upfront
Collector - May 2018 - 5
Collector - May 2018 - Industry News
Collector - May 2018 - 7
Collector - May 2018 - 8
Collector - May 2018 - 9
Collector - May 2018 - 10
Collector - May 2018 - 11
Collector - May 2018 - Best Practices
Collector - May 2018 - 13
Collector - May 2018 - FYI
Collector - May 2018 - 15
Collector - May 2018 - Collection Tips
Collector - May 2018 - 17
Collector - May 2018 - Off to a Running Start
Collector - May 2018 - 19
Collector - May 2018 - 20
Collector - May 2018 - 21
Collector - May 2018 - 22
Collector - May 2018 - 23
Collector - May 2018 - On the Ball
Collector - May 2018 - 25
Collector - May 2018 - 26
Collector - May 2018 - 27
Collector - May 2018 - 28
Collector - May 2018 - 29
Collector - May 2018 - ACA International’s 2018 Convention and Expo Highlights
Collector - May 2018 - 31
Collector - May 2018 - 32
Collector - May 2018 - 33
Collector - May 2018 - 34
Collector - May 2018 - 35
Collector - May 2018 - 36
Collector - May 2018 - 37
Collector - May 2018 - 38
Collector - May 2018 - 39
Collector - May 2018 - Calendar
Collector - May 2018 - Honor Roll
Collector - May 2018 - Building a Case for Continuous Education
Collector - May 2018 - 43
Collector - May 2018 - Hire Like a Pro
Collector - May 2018 - 45
Collector - May 2018 - Getting Ahead
Collector - May 2018 - 47
Collector - May 2018 - ACA Responds to Misleading ACLU Report on Debt Collection Industry
Collector - May 2018 - 49
Collector - May 2018 - ACA Wins Legal Challenge Against FCC’s TCPA Declaratory Ruling and Order
Collector - May 2018 - 51
Collector - May 2018 - Compliance
Collector - May 2018 - 53
Collector - May 2018 - ACA SearchPoint
Collector - May 2018 - Last Word
Collector - May 2018 - 56
Collector - May 2018 - Cover3
Collector - May 2018 - Cover4
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