Better Late Than Never: Montel Williams to Stop Paying Loans


Photo: MoneyMutual

There is another small ray of good news today in the long-term battle to rid the nation of predatory crooks in the payday loan racketeering. After years as a well-paid barker for sharks at Mutual Money, the television pitchman Montel Williams announced that he would stop supporting the company. The announcement came just a day after the New York City Department of Financial Services announced a settlement with the owners of MoneyMutual which bans the company from doing business in New York and requires it to pay a fine of $ 2.1 million. Got any ideas, Attorney General Cooper?

This is taken from the settlement announcement:

Superintendent [of Financial Services Benjamin] Lawsky said: “Using Mr. Williams’ reputation as a trusted celebrity, MoneyMutual marketed loans to struggling consumers with sky-high interest rates – sometimes over 1,300% – that trapped New Yorkers. -Yorkis in destructive debt cycles. The company made special efforts to target more than 55% of its customers who were “repeat customers”, including so-called “Gold” customers who took out a new loan to repay a previous loan. We are happy that they have agreed to resolve this matter and to stop marketing these illegal and usurious loans to consumers in New York. Our investigation of the lead generation industry continues.

Today’s MoneyMutual deal is the first successful enforcement action against a payday loan “lead generation” company penalizing it for its illegal conduct. Lead generation companies usually don’t do payday loans directly, but instead create websites marketing these illegal loans. By promising easy access to quick cash, lead generation companies trick consumers into providing them with sensitive personal information such as social security and bank account numbers, and then selling that information to illegally operating payday lenders. in New York and other states. In December 2013, the DFS issued subpoenas to 16 online “lead generation” companies, including Selling Source / MoneyMutual, who were suspected of deceptively or deceptively marketing illegal online payday loans in New York City.

Hopefully state officials keep Selling Source (aka “MoneyMutual”) on the run, and at some point Mr. Williams issues a public apology to the thousands and thousands of vulnerable Americans he has helped out. connect to these sharks. However, we will not hope that he returns the billions of dollars he has undoubtedly received or, better yet, donates it to a good cause.

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