The Equal Credit Opportunity Act

“The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the nation’s consumer protection agency, enforces the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA), which prohibits credit discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, age, or because you get public assistance.” This is a direct quote from the Federal Trade Commission Consumer Information webpage. The Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) was passed in 1974, and for good reason. In 1974 discrimination against women (particularly single women) and people of color applying for credit was unfortunately all too common. While the ECOA passed, financial discrimination unfortunately still exists. It is your right to protect yourself from financial discrimination and to and demand the rights guaranteed to you under the ECOA.

Let us say that you were not born in the United States and have received federal assistance in the past. Under the ECOA, a lender cannot deny loan applications or demand higher fees or interest rates, based on those reasons alone. This is all well and good, but what if your parents are recent immigrants who are not fluent in English? They may not be aware of the protections afforded to them under the ECOA, and therefore may have been victimized by predatory lenders. How would you feel if you found out your hard working parents paid thousands of dollars in extraneous and unnecessary fees when taking out their mortgage or a car loan? It is unconscionable but unfortunately happens all too frequently.   

We at LMG Financial Solutions Home believe in the importance of the ECOA and raising awareness of the rights guaranteed under it. Every person living in this country deserves equal financial protections under the law.

Source: “THE EQUAL CREDIT OPPORTUNITY ACT”, The US Department of Justice.

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