The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said Wednesday that Cash America International Inc. must pay $19 million in refunds and fines for “robo-signing” court documents and overcharging military members. The bureau said the payday lender robo-signed — a process when papers are signed without being reviewed — court documents in debt collection lawsuits and violated the Military Lending Act by overcharging service members and their families.
Cash America will pay up to $14 million in refunds to consumers and a $5 million fine for the violations and for destroying records in advance of the bureau’s examination, the CFPB said. The company said in a statement that it has agreed to the payment without admitting or denying the CFPB’s assertions.
Cash America, based in Fort Worth, is one of the largest short-term lenders in the country. It provides payday loans, lines of credit, installment loans and pawn loans through hundreds of retail locations across the U.S. The company has already voluntarily paid back roughly $6 million to military borrowers and victims of the robo-signing practices, according to the CFPB. Through Wednesday’s order, the company is committing to an additional $8 million in payments to consumers, for a total refund of up to $14 million.