New California legislation seeks greater controls over debt industry

New California legislation seeks greater controls over debt industry

| Sep 11, 2020 | Ethics & Professional Responsibility

California State Senator Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont) calls it “a gaping loophole that needs to be closed to protect California consumers.”

And Wieckowski vows to close it.

The selected vehicle favored for doing so by the legislator and like-minded thinkers in the state’s upper chamber is Senate Bill 908. That would-be law recently cleared the Senate and is now working its way through the California Assembly.

SB 908 has a bull’s eye focus, namely, debt collectors and debt buyers across California. Industry critics complain that actors within that vast employment sphere have operated with impunity and a tandem disregard for consumers’ rights for far too long. Wieckowski’s bill seeks to rein them in with new beefed-up requirements that would materially curb their prerogatives.

A recent in-depth article on the legislation duly notes a point about the debt collection realm that many of our readers might not be aware of.

That is this: Unlike myriad other industries operative across the state, its key participants are not currently subject to close state regulation and licensing requirements.

SB 908’s enactment as law would change that. Among other things, it would mandate close industry controls exercised by the state’s Department of Business Oversight and provide an online source for consumers seeking to check the licensing status of individuals and companies. Moreover, and as noted in the above-cited article, DBO officials would also respond to borrower complaints and take enforcement actions against alleged violators. Those would centrally include license suspensions and revocations.

No state oversees business professionals across myriad realms more closely than California does, with licensing controls being a central component in the state’s regulatory arsenal. Individuals holding occupational licenses who have questions or concerns regarding any license-linked matter can contact a proven license-defense law firm for guidance and, when necessary, diligent legal representation.