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Massachusetts looks into JPMorgan Chase debt collection practices

Sept. 21, 2013 at 12:27 PM

BOSTON, Sept. 21 (UPI) -- Massachusetts is conducting an independent investigation of JPMorgan Chase's debt collection practices, a source told The Wall Street Journal.

The investigation is independent of several concurrent and recently concluded investigations into debt collection activities at the bank, the Journal said Saturday. JPMorgan declined to comment on the issue, the newspaper said.

The U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency recently announced JPMorgan Chase will be a total of $920 million in fines to settle federal regulatory claims associated with billions of dollars in losses and subsequent attempts to cover them up.

The OCC ordered the bank to inform customers when their debt was sold to another company and to improve in-house record keeping. The regulator ordered the bank to inform employees properly about lawsuits affecting them.

Separate from these efforts, 13 states -- led by Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller -- are investigating debt collection at JP Morgan.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is investigating JPMorgan as part of an industry-wide look into debt collection.

The CFPB is looking specifically into practices at JPMorgan involved in credit card debt collection.

In a case still pending, California in May filed a lawsuit that accuses JPMorgan of illegal debt collection activities involving 100,000 customers.

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