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What we heard: military consumer financial issues

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When you want to know what’s going on with a group, you go directly to the source, right? That’s exactly what the FTC did last week when it held a Military Consumer Financial Workshop in San Antonio, Texas. The day’s purpose was to take a look at the financial issues and scams that can affect military consumers – active duty servicemembers, veterans, and their families.

The day was spent talking with military consumer advocates, the Department of Defense, military legal services, family readiness groups, industry associations, academics, and all branches of service. The topics included cars (buying, financing and leasing), student lending, payday loans, debt collection, avoiding scams, and resources that can help.

So what were some themes that we heard?

  • Servicemembers and veterans can be targets of scams and dishonest practices. For example, because there’s a culture of responsibility and a respect for the chain of command in the military, when bad deals are presented with an air of authority, servicemembers might be more likely to fall for the scam.
  • In addition to laws like the FTC Act, there are strong consumer protections in place for the military, including the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act and the Military Lending Act. These military-specific protections can be tough to understand – or make use of – without help.
  • But there’s free help for servicemembers dealing with financial and life planning issues. The Department of Defense has a vast network of Personal Financial Managers (PFMs) on installations across the country. Free legal advice also is available. As servicemembers consider a major purchase, education, housing, or just life in general, PFMs and legal services offices can help.

If you want to know more about the day, a video recording of the event will be posted soon. We’ll also continue the conversation on September 7th in Los Angeles, in a Military Common Ground conference that will be live streamed. Stay tuned for more details.

And on July 26 at 7:00 pm ET, Military Consumer will participate in a Facebook Live event for servicemembers, new veterans, and their families. Tune in to’s Facebook page for tips on choosing a college and looking for a job. In the meantime, check out more resources for servicemembers and their families at


What about being forced to use mandatory prescription services that mishandle medication? No longer having a say in options provided? It's one way, gov't contractor or pay 100% of quality of life meds. Veterans deserve better with less stress in just trying to get through each day!

I received the new report!

We have just been through a huge real estate SCAM by a Condo Association Manager and its HOA Board and lost a 100% Paid for in full Condominium. ALL Monthly HOA fees were paid fully. They racked up huge legal bills against us and then charged it to our HOA account, and then took a $200,000 condo at a Sherriff's sale for $75,000. They did this while our 100% Disabled Vet had just died that same month. They timed it all perfectly, so we would be caught off guard. Can anyone help our family get through this nightmare?

If you have questions about a real estate transaction, you may want to contact the local agency that assesses property, or regulates real estate agents or condo associations, or your State Attorney General's Office.

If you want to talk to a lawyer you could use this state-by-state list from the American Bar Association

or visit this site from the State Bar Associations. The American Bar Association provides some legal help for veterans with some legal issues. Follow this link to the ABA Pro Bono resources for Veterans.

does this have anything to do with the way WELLS FARGO has handle VETERANS applications?

Wells Fargo hurt my company financial structure. Pre-approved business line of credit. At the end of the day their credit reporting system was compromised by actors. I was never approved. (Good score)

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