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Markey Introduces Bill to Protect Troops from Predatory Lenders

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SOF supports this legislation to protect our troops from predatory lending.


In an effort to help servicemembers and their families cope with the
unique circumstances that often jeopardize their financial stability,
Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) today introduced the Military
Savings Act, legislation to promote savings rates among military
servicemembers and decrease their need to turn to predatory payday
lenders in times of financial crisis. The legislation establishes
a pilot program in which financial institutions operating on military
bases will offer innovative financial products to help troops and their
families improve their financial situations. Senator Markey also offered
the bill as an amendment to the National
Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) currently being debated in the Senate.
 
“Our troops are heroes, but sometimes even heroes need help,” said Senator Markey, a
member of the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee. “When
we offer innovative savings tools for our troops, we can help ensure
that military families facing unexpected expenses don’t have to turn to
predatory payday lenders. As our brave men and
women in uniform work to protect us, we must help protect them from
financial scams that could drain their savings. I look forward to
working with my colleagues to help ensure that our brave men and women
in the military have the resources they need to be
financially secure and succeed.”
 
A copy of the legislation can be found
HERE.
 
“The
Consumer Federation of America (CFA) applauds the introduction of the
Military Savings Act of 2013 that would establish a pilot program to
develop innovative consumer
financial products that encourage savings and wealth-creation among
active-duty servicemembers,”
said Tom Feltner, Director of Financial Services, Consumer Federation of America.
“Institutional efforts by the DoD to spur the creation of innovative
savings tools will not only help increase the financial security of
military families, but will reduce demand for abusive, high-cost loans
and strengthen military readiness.”

 

Military
servicemembers are three times more likely than civilians to resort to
predatory “payday” loans that charge exorbitant interest rates. And in
one military study,
27 percent of military families carry $10,000 or more in credit card
debt, compared with 16 percent of civilian families. According to a
report released by the Consumer Federation of America, although the
Military Lending Act passed in 2007 has reduced abusive
lending, servicemembers are still exposed to many dangerous loans that
threaten their financial well-being.