The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has expanded its Consumer Complaint Database to include state-by-state information. The CFPB also added complaints about money transfers and credit reporting to the database.

“This data puts valuable information in the hands of consumers to help them understand what is happening in their states,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “And by adding credit reporting and money transfer complaints to the Consumer Complaint Database, we are making these important markets more transparent and accountable to all consumers.”

The expanded Consumer Complaint Database went live at: consumerfinance.gov/complaintdatabase.

The Consumer Complaint Database update will add a field to every complaint – the state it came from. While five-digit ZIP code information – self-identified by the consumer – has always been included in the complaint information, adding the state helps people more easily localize data. The state field also includes the District of Columbia, U.S. territories, and the military post office addresses of service members.

Users can easily track, sort, search and download complaints listed in the Consumer Complaint Database. In March, the database expanded from more than 19,000 credit card complaints to nearly 90,000 complaints on credit cards, mortgages, student loans, bank accounts and services, and other consumer loans, like auto loans. The database now contains more than 113,000 complaints. The live database updates nightly; so as the CFPB handles more complaints, more are added.

The database allows the public to see what consumers complained about and why. It includes the type of complaint, the date of submission, and the company that the complaint concerns. A consumer’s identity and other personal information are not included. Complaints are listed in the database only after the company responds to the complaint or after they have had the complaint for 15 days, whichever comes first. The CFPB uses the complaints along with other information, such as the timeliness of the company’s response, in a variety of ways, for example, to help prioritize complaints for investigation.

According to the database, the top states per capita by mortgage complaints are: 1) New Hampshire, 2) Maryland, 3) the District of Columbia, 4) Georgia, and 5) Florida.

The top states per capita by credit card complaints are: 1) the District of Columbia, 2) Delaware, 3) Maryland, 4) New York, and 5) New Jersey.

And, the top states per capita by bank account and service complaints are: 1) the District of Columbia, 2) Delaware, 3) New Jersey, 4) Rhode Island, and 5) Maryland.

The CFPB is also adding more than 6,000 credit reporting complaints to the database.  

Credit reporting companies, which include what are popularly called credit bureaus or credit reporting agencies, are private businesses that track a consumer’s credit history and other consumer transactions. The credit reports they generate – and the three-digit credit scores that are based on those reports – play an increasingly important role in the lives of American consumers. The consequences of errors in a consumer report can be catastrophic for a consumer, shutting him or her out of credit markets.

When submitting a complaint about credit reporting, consumers can select from five common issues, which are all searchable on the updated database:

    •    Incorrect information on a credit report;
    •    Problems with a credit reporting company’s investigation;
    •    Improper use of a credit report;
    •    Not being able to get a credit report or credit score; and
    •    Problems with credit monitoring or identity protection services.

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