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Debt collectors see coronavirus as a golden opportunity



Debt collectors see coronavirus as a golden opportunity

In April, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously passed a resolution calling for a debt collection moratorium until the pandemic subsided. Besides, people are already quite worried.

The action was not carried out anywhere due to legal issues. But it is a tool for our civic leaders to quickly recognize what will soon appear to many people with bills to pay.

Consumer advocates say debt collectors have grown more aggressive because orders remain at home in California and across the country making it easier for them to contact, and sometimes harass, people who owe money.

Christine Hines, legislative director for National Assn. Consumer Advocates, said he believes “debt collection will only increase in the coming months” as millions of Americans struggle to make ends meet amid job losses and salary cuts.

“The pandemic does not change how rude debt collectors are, it just shows that they are able to do more harm to vulnerable consumers than we thought,” he told me.

It is understandable why debt collectors improve their game. Consumer debt reached a record $ 14.3 trillion in the first quarter – and that was, in large part, before the coronavirus was successful.

Economists say debt has almost certainly grown since then after tens of millions of Americans lost their jobs and many saw their salaries cut.

U.S. Department of Labor reported last week that the unemployment rate was now 13.3% – although it said it would be as high as 16.3% if data collection errors were recorded.

At present, the debt collection report is largely anecdotal booster. A spokesman for the Federal Trade Commission said the official calculation of complaints from consumers will not be available until the end of the month.

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But there is no dispute that the hard times.

Outstanding financial obligations must now compete with paying rent or mortgages, buying food and covering medical expenses.

California Governor Gavin Newsom signs executive order in April temporarily blocked debt collectors from decorating cash from federal stimulus payments made to households amid a pandemic. He also decided that payments on most student loans could be postponed, without penalty, for 90 days.

“Californians are reeling from the financial impact of COVID-19,” Newsom said. “The last thing they deserve is to see more money being held when they try to put food on the table and pay their rent or mortgage.”

ACA International, a leading trading group that represents debt collectors, said its members were misunderstood.

Mark Neeb, the organization’s chief executive, said in a statement that debt collectors “remain committed to consumers,” and that the industry has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic with “compassion and empathy.”

Kiran Sidhu, a policy adviser at the Center for Responsible Lending, could not help laughing when I told him.

“They are just trying to protect their profits,” he said, adding that he hoped the industry would become stronger in the pursuit of consumers as the pandemic continued.

Case in point: Debt collectors have explained that they don’t like a suggestion from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau which will require the industry to notify consumers that their debt restriction laws may have passed.

In California, the statute of limitations for the majority of consumer debt is four years. After that amount of time, a collector can still chase you, but they cannot take you to court (or if they do, you can cancel the case).

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This may be news to many people, not least because debt collectors often imply or state that if you don’t cough, you will be sued regardless of how long your debt lasts.

Changes to the CFPB rules will also require collectors to tell people that if they even make a very small partial payment, it can restart legal hours and make you vulnerable again to lawsuits.

Neeb said determining whether a debt restriction law has passed is “not always a simple question” and could be a burdensome requirement for the collection industry.

That said, debt collectors would rather not have to do more homework. They would rather spend their time interrupting people’s dinners and scaring them about the dangers of the law and financial disasters.

When job loss increases, the FTC issues a the latest reminder that consumers have rights based on Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

“If there are too many collection calls, you can stop them,” the agency said. “Just send to the mail collector who tells them to stop contacting you.”

That won’t eliminate your debt, the FTC noted, “but stopping the call can give you time to regroup, then start working your way towards financial recovery.”

Some other things to remember:

  • Debt collectors are prohibited by law from calling you before 8 am or after 9 pm. unless you authorize them to do so (Don’t).
  • The collector must show written proof of financial obligations if you request it.
  • No collector is permitted to verbally abusive you, use language that is disrespectful or misrepresents their status, such as falsely claiming to be a lawyer or government official.
  • If you feel you have been treated unfairly, contact the state attorney general’s office, FTC, CFPB, or all of them.
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That debt collection moratorium I mentioned above was introduced by L.A. City Councilor Monica Rodriguez. It asked Mayor Eric Garcetti to declare debt collectors “business unimportant” during the pandemic and thus temporarily prevent them from operating within the city limits.

“The family has struggled and experienced economic trauma,” Rodriguez told me. “We don’t need repo officers showing up at the door and taking assets.”

The mayor’s office replied that although the sentiment behind the proposal was laudable, City Atty. Mike Feuer questions the legality of displacement and whether city officials have jurisdiction over collection agencies outside the country.

But do not worry. You can still count on all the compassion and empathy promised by debt collectors.

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PRR. Banco do Fomento invites companies to offer new financial instruments – Observer



PRR.  Banco do Fomento invites companies to offer new financial instruments – Observer

Banco Português de Fomento started a public consultation this Friday aiming to receive contributions to launch new instruments under the Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR) which still has 475 million euros.

In a statement, the organization stressed that it intends to invite companies and all stakeholders to participate in public consultations on “future capital and quasi-capital decisions.”

According to PRR, Banco Português de Fomento (BPF) has been cast in “structuring and distribution of capital decisions and quasi-equity capital of a total of €1,425 million under the Capitalization and Business Innovation component of the PRR.

The Belarusian Popular Front still has 475 million euros to launch new programs, the organization’s press release emphasizes.

The public consultation is aimed at soliciting contributions under “the terms of two pre-structured financial instruments designed to encourage company formation and/or capitalization of businesses, primarily in the start-up phases”, “Venture Capital Program” (an instrument that assumes a fund structure of funds)” and “The Deal Co-investment Program (an instrument that takes the form of direct investment in companies, always in co-investment with private investors)”.


“These tool proposals are aimed at facilitating market entry and growth/expansion of viable companies through the development new products/services or markets and strengthening and professionalization of personnel, including the management team,” the BNF press release further emphasizes.

The public consultation is also aimed at obtaining “other proposals for new capital and quasi-capital solutions in accordance with the terms of the aforementioned capitalization funds, which are considered relevant and necessary because they are considered unavailable at the time, or existing conditions that prevent access and use.”

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Ana Carvalho, CEO of BPF, emphasized that these public consultations “are aimed at building an open dialogue with all actors of the business ecosystem, with to improve workflows and identify market failuresand the most appropriate solutions to overcome them.”

“Although we are actively in contact with various associations and institutions, this public comment allows all interested parties to participate, especially potential beneficiaries and partners involved in these measures,” he added, quoted in a press release.

All information and technical descriptions of the two pre-structured products are available on the Banco Português de Fomento website at the link

Suggestions or offers must be submitted online for a thorough assessment by the Belarusian Popular Front until 18:00 on December 19, this body further explained.

The mission of Banco Português de Fomento is to support the economic and social development of Portugal by creating and providing innovative, competitive and appropriate solutions to the needs and challenges of the business ecosystem, enhancing entrepreneurial potential, investment and job creation, and promoting sustainability and economic, social and territorial cohesion of the country.

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FESTin returns to distribute Portuguese-language cinema worldwide | Cinema



FESTin returns to distribute Portuguese-language cinema worldwide |  Cinema

For the 13th edition, FESTin’s mission remains the same: “Bring cinema in Portuguese to the whole world.” So says co-director Adriana Niemeyer by phone with PÚBLICO on the eve of the start of the film festival, which starts this Friday and runs until next week, ending on Wednesday the 14th at LX Factory at 7:00 pm, in Espaço Talante, inside the bookstore Ler Devagar , with a screening of four Brazilian short films chosen by Antonio Grassi, the actor in charge of the space, followed by a toast.

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VARIOUS. Portuguese project that wears a shirt for mental health



VARIOUS.  Portuguese project that wears a shirt for mental health

Little phrases with big meaning sometimes fit into T-shirtright now in bag da Ivory, a project that began in the year of the pandemic and has been interventionally warning about mental health issues ever since.

Francisco Soares Ganzo, the founder, first suffered a panic attack when he was in 10th grade, but ended up not paying much attention to signs that something was wrong. Then the mental health problem reappeared later, at a different stage in life and with different symptoms.

“Four years ago, I started experiencing constant anxiety, to the point that I couldn’t sleep,” says 25-year-old Francisco Versa. “Basically, I put a lot of pressure on myself from the women with whom I had relationships. It was Wednesday masculinity, competition,” he continues.

Early adulthood began with this “almost obsession to be with women” and get the best. performanceto the point where he became very anxious whenever he had sexual relations with a woman.

“The peak was when I couldn’t sleep. My brain was always on and I started taking pills to help me sleep,” says Francisco.

In 2019, he decided to see a therapist rather than a psychologist because he thought it was only “for wimps”, but it wasn’t, and Francisco later figured it out.

Today, he wants to convey the same message, and to do so, he created the Ivory project in 2020, consisting of clothes and accessories with special messages that form a bridge to the necessary incentive for those in need of help.

“When I finally worked up the courage to ask for help, I was like, ‘Wow, I wish I had started sooner. That’s why I started this project. I lacked something that would motivate me to go to therapy earlier. clothes are meant to spread information,” he says.

But Ivory goes far beyond what is written in sweatshirts and accessories.

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Help that comes in order

“Everyone you know is fighting a battle you know nothing about.”

This is one of the messages recorded in t-shirts e sweats from ivory. It’s simple and affects everyone in their own way, but the focus of the Ivory team – also with a past or present marked by mental health issues – is not the phrases on the T-shirts, but what follows them.

“To say that mental health is talked about a lot is a lie. What I mean? When I hear the news that companies are very concerned about mental health or that it has become fashionable with COVID-19, it is all a lie. What people say is vague. Nobody tells stories. A person who is really bad, like I was, does not need to hear that he should go to the gym or eat well. He needs to hear a story like this.” .

Ivory’s next step is to create a space for sharing testimonies through Appendixjust to address this shortcoming. Until then, the project intends to function as anxiety And further to support in the field of mental health.

“For every order we have, a person receives Email mail to make an appointment. Because our goal is to really open doors, to do something that I didn’t have, ”says Francisco. “I feel like a lot of people buy ivory because they’re in bad condition, but they don’t want to take the next step to take care of themselves.”

If encouragement is not enough, an ivory sweater will be cozy and Email mail gives you the push you need to make an appointment with one of Ivory’s psychologists. All it takes is an Instagram post or an email.

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Sweaters and bags 100% organic cotton and mobile phone cases with phrases coined by Francisco Soares Ganzo and designs created by the whole team can be ordered at website.

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