A new government watch dog wants to turn the consumer finance industry upside down by making public a new database of complaints. Known as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a new bureaucracy put in place as part of 2010 financial reforms, it will allow banking and finance customers a means to submit complaints for government and private review.
Filing a complaint against a company is easy enough.
Making a Complaint
Here’s what you need to do to make your voice heard:
- Navigate to the website at http://www.consumerfinance.gov/ and click “submit a complaint” in the top right corner.
- Submit relevant information about your complaint, including any information necessary to describe your experience with a particular bank, or banking product. The site allows you to submit your experience with any product ranging from credit cards to savings account.
- Wait for a resolution. Once you provide details about your concerns, the file is sent to the government and the financial company for review. The complaint is also logged in a database and is accessable by anyone, which makes it one of the largest sources for reviews – positive or negative – written from individuals experienced with each product.
- Keep up with your case. You can request an update at any time, and track digitally the progress that you make as your complaint is accepted and verified by the CFPB and the company in question.
The CFPB believes that making more information public will force companies to adopt more consumer-friendly operations in their own right. The CFPB made waves when it released its database of credit card complaints, which makes it possible for everyone to see how often customers complain about a particular product or service, and how well a company responds to any problems.
There really is no limit to what you can report – the database runs the gamut from complaints about unjust late fees to interest charges that are higher than the borrower anticipated.