Although the vast majority of the financial institutions listed in the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s consumer credit card complaint database are big banks, two large credit unions have already made the list that launched June 19: the $49 billion Navy Federal Credit Union and the $15 billion Pentagon Federal Credit Union.
PenFed had two complaints listed on the database: one objecting to fees, which was received through the CFPB’s website, while another concerning credit determination was received through a referral from another financial regulator. Both complaints were addressed in a timely manner and included financial relief awarded to the consumer, according to the database.
Navy Federal’s complaint was submitted through CFPB’s website and concerned collection practices. The matter was settled in a timely manner and the closed complaint included financial relief for the member.
Navy Federal spokesman Donovan Fox said the complaint was handled according to existing complaint policies, which includes a response from the appropriate credit union department within 48 hours.
“It’s the same process as any complaint we would receive from members, we just added CFPB to our policy,” Fox said.
Even though the CFPB is Navy Federal’s primary regulator, the complaint arrived via email alert to the credit union’s correspondence desk, and did not involve an examiner. Despite the negative publicity, Fox said Navy Federal is not concerned the database listing will influence its four million members or potential members.
“We believe we’re always providing our members with tremendous service,” he said. “And there are other forums out there that say negative things about us as well, unfortunately. We try to stick to the positive.”
PenFed said it had no immediate comment.
The Dodd-Frank Act gave the CFPB authority to make public information about the markets for consumer financial products and services. The CFPB finalized its policy for disclosing some of the data through its Consumer Complaint Database on June 19. According to the Federal Register, the CFPB is currently seeking comments through Thursday regarding the expansion of the database to include all financial products.
The database aims to provide the public with information regarding what is being complained about and why. It contains certain individual-level field data collected by the CFPB, including the type of complaint, the date of submission, the consumer’s ZIP code, and the company that the complaint concerns, which can be filtered based upon search criteria. The database also includes information about the actions taken on a complaint but does not include confidential information about a consumer’s identity.
The database currently includes credit card complaints received by the CFPB on and after June 1, 2012. Complaints are only uploaded after the lender verifies that it has been correctly identified by the complainant. As it is a live database that updates daily, the public will see more information in the database as more complaints are received.
Additional retroactive data will be added when the “beta” tag is removed by the end of this year.