Comenity responds to my CFPB complaint…

Introduction

I had written about how Comenity shut me down back in April after they did a hard pull without my consent.  I was more angry about the hard pull than the actual shutdown.  I then filed a CFPB against them in early August and wrote:

Comenity Bank let me open a credit card account in December 2015. They then pulled my credit report WITHOUT MY CONSENT and then subsequently closed my credit card account in April 2016.

The resolution I wanted:

I want Comenity to refund the $149 annual fee that I had paid. I also want them to remove the credit inquiry on my Experian credit report on 4/25/16 THAT I DID NOT AUTHORIZE.

 

Forwarded to FDIC

After 5 days, the complaint was sent to the FDIC.  I’m not sure why it was sent to the FDIC (maybe it’s because they weren’t in the database.)  I then waited nearly a month for their reponse.

 

Comenity’s response

comenitycfpb

 

Conclusion

I am NOT happy with their response.  I don’t buy the fact that me agreeing to some terms and conditions during the application process allows them to make a hard pull.  I know other banks do soft pulls, which I’m okay with, but I don’t know of any other bank that does a hard pull.  I also don’t like how they kept my $150 annual fee while I only had the card for 6 months.  I would have been fine with a $75 prorated refund.

I haven’t decided whether I’ll pursue it further with the FDIC or not.  Maybe I will since typing out this post just made me even more angry.

 

 

 

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  • Jon

    “We respectfully decline your request to remove the inquiry from your credit report because we are required by law to report factual information.” — If they really want to report factual information they should have reported the inquiry as an “account review,” not a “application for credit.” The permissible purpose of the inquiry is what determines it’s hard/soft pull status. If you want to persue this, I’d suggest asking them to correctly report it as an account review.

    • Miles per Day

      Very good point Jon. Thanks for the info.

  • disqust101

    Plenty of banks require hard pulls.

    • Dávid Róbert

      I’ve yet to hear (well, apart from this incident) that require a hard pull once every 6 month.

  • Patrick Barnes

    Dispute the hard pull with Experian?

    You should re-contact the CFPB because they shouldn’t have punted to FDIC.

    Also, Commentiy are junk. Only reason I don’t have a VX card desipite flying VX a tonne.

    • Bob

      FDIC the primary federal regulator for Comenity and Comenity Capital.

    • Miles per Day

      Good idea Patrick. I think I will try the dispute with Experian.

  • Secretary_Toaster

    this ain’t legal advice, but it looks like the 9th Cir. recognizes a private right of action under the FCRA, 15 U.S.C. §1681s-2. (You’re in Washington, right?). There’s a lot out there on the internets on this issue. Maybe writing a letter to the legal department that asserts your rights under the statute re: the furnisher’s [bank’s] obligation to accurately report to the credit bureaus, might be worthwhile insofar as it gets someone’s attention. Who knows?

  • You should definitely pursue it further, this doesn’t sound reasonable at all, nor is it customary as far as other banks. Do a little bit of research online to see if they’ve pulled the same/similar thing(s) to others. Class action or not, I’d contact an attorney to see what they say.

    • Bob

      Customary doesn’t mean a thing, banks can do whatever their cardholder agreements allow.

  • DrRyan_L

    Follow up! This is despicable behavior!! And send BBB

    • Bob

      lol, the BBB

  • Mark Ostermann

    I could see them saying no on the AF if you got a sign up bonus etc. but to not remove the hard inquiry which costs them nothing seems like they just want to be dicks.

  • clarelouise44

    Comenity seems to be a very conservative bank. I applied for a Roaman’s credit card with them and they only gave me a $1,000 credit limit and my FICO is over 800. Going from under $1000 spend to $17,000 spend would have been a huge red flag for them. In a sense you did it to yourself.

    • Miles per Day

      Like I said, I understand why they shut me down and have no issues with that. I have an issue with the hard pull 6 months later and the lack of a refund prorated or not on the annual fee.

  • Ken

    Read the card’s terms and disclosures, see if it mentions anything about doing a hard inquiry. Usually it will only say something like “we reserve the right to obtain credit info about your financial fitness” or something similar that they’ll hide behind.

    • Miles per Day

      I don’t see it. This is all I see on the web anyway.

      F. Disputes and Reporting to Consumer Reporting Agencies
      Credit Reports
      You give us permission to investigate your credit record.
      You agree that a credit report may be requested in connection with the processing of your credit application. A report may also be requested in connection with a credit extension, credit limit request, Account renewal or update, Account collection action, or dispute investigation. Upon request, we will tell you the name and address of any consumer reporting agency that furnished a report on you. You consent to the obtaining of such reports by signing or otherwise submitting an application or solicitation.
      You understand that we may report negative information (such as, late payments, missed payments, or other defaults) about your Account to consumer reporting agencies.
      You give us permission to provide information about your Account to consumer reporting agencies and other creditors, as well as to the retailer whose name appears on your Cards.

      • Ken

        Can you respond to the dispute with CFPB? FDIC is for deposit accounts, so I don’t even know why they went that route. You may need to find the card disclosures that they normally send out with the CC when you first get it. See if you can have someone else request the disclosures so they don’t connect your name.

        • Miles per Day

          No, since CFPB punted it to FDIC, I’ll need to call them up.

          Yes, I’ll need to find the disclosure that was sent out too.

          • Ken

            Ughh, that’s stupid.

        • Bob

          FDIC is for some banks. Comenity and Comenity Capital are banks that they regulate.

      • Ethan Gao

        This is perfect for a class action. i

      • Bob

        >You give us permission to investigate your credit record.
        There is nothing saying they can’t pull your credit more than once.

        >A report may also be requested in connection with a credit extension
        You charging $17k in one month is them extending you $17k in credit. Hard to fight that, especially the unusual pattern of your spend.

  • Carl Pietrantonio

    I dunno, but I think I would have expected *some* sort of a hard pull after applying for a credit card, even after issuance. I don’t think I have gotten a card yet pretty much that didn’t involve a pull. Maybe that is just me though.

    That said, not pro-rating an *annual* (thus it covers a year’s time) fee is very dick-ish. I’d push it once more focusing on the fee refund if it was me but I’d likely mark up the hard pull to them being credit card people. Otherwise, forget Comenity.

    • Miles per Day

      Carl I have no problem with the hard pull back in December when I applied for the card. I have a problem with the hard pull 6 months later that I didn’t authorize. Think how this would affect your credit if every bank kept giving you a HP every 6 months or so w/o your consent.

  • disqus_l7GXsYbTLi

    Wow they are being assholes. I doubt you’ll get a better resolution but I really hope you do.

  • Nancy

    I would be annoyed, but not sure if pursuing further would get you anything. Then I would probably be even more pissed.

  • Jordan

    I definitely think you should follow up.