Pay-to-Pay Fees Attorneys
Does Your Mortgage Lender Charge Fees to Pay Online or Over the Phone? Our attorneys can assist you nationwide.
A home is one of the most expensive purchases you’ll ever make. Many homeowners, especially given the current financial climate, struggle to make their mortgage payments. As such, it wasn’t surprising when many hardworking consumers began to contact us at Bradly/Grombacher LLP to see whether it was lawful for financial instructions to charge them even more money on top of the mortgage payments simply to make a payment over the phone on via the internet.
Read on below to learn more about this topic. If you need legal assistance, please reach out to our pay-to-pay attorneys by contacting us online or calling (888) 418-7094.
You May Be Entitled to a Refund if You Were Charged Pay-to-Pay Fees
Most financial service companies give consumers several options to make their monthly mortgage payments. Many people pay their bills today online or by telephone because such payments often provide records of the payment, and the ability to pay bills electronically saves the hassle of writing checks and hoping they are received on time. Yet oftentimes such payments come with charges between $5-$20, which quickly add up.
In July 2017, the government’s Consumer Financial Protection Bureau warned banks about these surcharges. The agency’s director Richard Cordray said, “The Bureau is warning companies about tricking consumers into more expensive fees when they pay bills by phone. We are concerned that companies are misleading consumers about pay-by-phone fees or keeping them in the dark about much cheaper or no-cost payment options.”
View the CFPB Compliance Bulletin by clicking here. Despite this, many banks still continue to charge homeowners for these fees. Under State and Federal laws, these “pay-to-pay” fees may be unlawful.
Section 1692f(1) of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act prohibits debt collectors from collecting “any amount (including any interest, fee, charge, or expense incidental to the principal obligation) unless such amount is expressly authorized by the agreement creating the debt or permitted by law.” 15 U.S.C. § 1692f(1). Most standard deeds and mortgage agreements do not permit these charges or place restrictions on the amounts that can be charged.
Additionally, several states have enacted consumer protection statutes that either limit or prohibit so called convenience fees.
Serving Clients Nationwide
States where pay-by-phone fees for mortgage payments are restricted include:
- North Carolina
- West Virginia
Finally, most home mortgages written in the United States are backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. These agencies have rules protecting borrowers from undisclosed fees.
Do You Need Legal Assistance?
If you were charged pay-to-pay convenience or pay-by-phone fees, you may be entitled to a refund of those charges.