FTC Responds to Senator Al Franken


Background: Minnesota debt collectors sue like crazy and manipulate the courts to land debtors in jail. The Star-Tribune’s Chris Serres tells it like it is. Senator Al Franken gets pissed and tells the FTC to get with the program.

A month later, the FTC responded to Senator Franken’s letter. In sum, the FTC’s letter reads thus: “We’re doing some stuff. But yeah, what’s going on in Minnesota doesn’t sound right. And hey, it wouldn’t hurt to add some protections to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.”

It’s kind of a weak response. I think the FTC is just hoping this goes away so it doesn’t have to do anything. It didn’t bother making concrete recommendations, for example. And the FTC’s statement that “The Demand for Disclosure contains a clear and prominent statement . . . .” Is just wishful thinking. Legal forms rarely contain clear statements of anything, and the collection forms are particularly obtuse.

Here’s hoping that Senator Franken doesn’t let this die.