Agency Wants Lenders to Lay Off Service Members

     WASHINGTON (CN) – The Defense Department requests comments on whether it should enhance regulations to protect members of the military from evolving predatory loan practices, such as installment loans that prey on service members.
     This year’s National Defense Authorization Act includes a part dealing with “enhancement of protections on consumer credit for members of the armed forces and their dependants.”
     Among other things, the Department of Defense has issued a notice that proposed a rule that would require the development of “a policy on the predatory extension of credit through installment loans that target members of the armed forces and their dependants.”
     A report published recently by the Consumer Federation of America found “many predatory lenders have modified their products to avoid coverage by the department’s rules,” the department wrote.
     The report said the department “must remain vigilant to eliminate continuing, evolving predatory lending practices targeting service members and their families,” and that the relevant laws should be reviewed.
     Comments are due by Aug. 1.

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