Banking

Umpqua Bank fined $1.8 million over leasing unit’s collection practices

WASHINGTON — Umpqua Bank in Oregon was ordered to pay nearly $2 million by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. stemming from allegedly “unfair and deceptive” debt collection practices of a leasing subsidiary.

The $30 billion-asset bank based in Roseburg, which is owned by Umpqua Holdings Corp., was fined $1.8 million by the FDIC and voluntarily paid an additional $1.6 million in restitution to nearly 17,000 customers. The agency announced the settlement on Monday.

Financial Pacific Leasing, a subsidiary specializing in commercial equipment financing, charged undisclosed fees to borrowers with past-due accounts, according to the FDIC.

The agency also alleged that FinPac made excessive collection calls even after customers had asked for the company to stop, and disclosed information about customer debts to third parties.

FinPac also “advised borrowers FinPac would report delinquencies on commercial debt to the consumer reporting agencies, when its policy and practice was not to report such delinquencies to the consumer reporting agencies,” the FDIC said in a press release.

As part of the enforcement order, Umpqua agreed to pay the fine without admitting or denying the violations. A spokesperson for Umpqua was not immediately available to comment.



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