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federal

Reserve Bank o f Dallas

DALLAS, TEXAS

75222

Circular No. 78-178
December 26, 1978

"HOW TO FILE A CONSUMER COMPLAINT"

TO ALL MEMBER BANKS IN THE
ELEVENTH FEDERAL RESERVE DISTRICT:
The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System has recently
released for public distribution the attached pamphlet entitled "How to File a Con­
sumer Credit Complaint." The pamphlet is intended to encourage consumers with
a misunderstanding or conflict with a bank to deal directly with the bank to resolve
its possible misunderstanding. It also provides a Complaint Form which can be
used to bring unresolved complaints to the attention of the appropriate regulatory
agency.
The pamphlets may be useful in promoting bank/consumer relations
through display in bank lobbies or inclusion in customer mailings. They are avail­
able in quantity free of charge from the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. Orders by
mail should be addressed to Records Division, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas; tele
phone o rd ers may be placed by calling Ext. 6289.
Sincerely yours,
Ernest T. Baughman
President
Attachment

Banks and others are encouraged to use the following incoming W A T S numbers in contacting this Bank:
1 -8 00 -492 -440 3 (intrastate) and 1 -8 00 -527 -497 0 (interstate). For calls placed locally, please use 651 plus
the extension referred to above.

This publication was digitized and made available by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas' Historical Library (FedHistory@dal.frb.org)

LIST OF RESERVE BANKS
Atlanta, Georgia
104 Marietta Street, N.W.
ZIP 30303
(404) 586-8500

Minneapolis, Minnesota
250 Marquette Avenue
ZIP 55480
(612) 340-2345

Boston, Massachusetts
600 Atlantic Avenue
ZIP 02106
(61 7) 973-3000

New York, New York
33 Liberty Street
Federal Reserve P.O. Station
ZIP 10045
(212) 791-5000

Chicago, Illinois
230 South LaSalle Street
P.O. Box 834
ZIP 60690
(312)322-5322
Cleveland, Ohio
1455 East Sixth Street
P.O. Box 6387
ZIP 44101
(216) 241-2800
Dallas, Texas
400 South Akard Street
Station K
ZIP 75222
(214)651-6111
Kansas City, Missouri
925 Grand Avenue
Federal Reserve Station
ZIP 64198
(816) 881-2000

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
100 North Sixth Street
P.O. B o x 66
ZIP 19105
(215)574-6000
Richmond, Virginia
100 North Ninth Street
P.O. Box 27622
ZIP 23261
(804) 649-3611
San Francisco, California
400 Sansome Street
P.O. Box 7702
ZIP 94120
(415) 544-2000
St. Louis, Missouri
411 Locust Street
P.O. Box 442
ZIP 63166
(314) 444-8444

LIST OF OTHER
ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES
National Banks
Comptroller of the Currency
Consumer Affairs Division
Washington, D.C. 20219
Nonmember Insured Banks
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
Office of Bank Customer Affairs
Washington, D.C. 20429

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
(July 1978)

howto
file a
consumer
credit

complaint

If y o u ha ve a c o m p la in t a b o u t a b a n k, yo u ca n
g e t h e lp fr o m th e F e d e ra l R e s e rv e . Y o u m a y c o m ­
p la in a b o u t a p o s s ib le v io la tio n o f a n y o f th e
F e d e ra l c o n s u m e r c re d it la w s lis te d in th is
p a m p h le t — or a b o u t a n y b a n k th a t yo u th in k has
b e e n u n fa ir o r d e c e p tiv e in a n y b u s in e s s yo u ha ve
c o n d u c te d w ith it. Y o u d o n 't n e e d to h a ve a n a c ­
c o u n t a t th e b a n k to file a c o m p la in t.
W e w ill re c e iv e c o m p la in ts a b o u t a n y b a n k .
H o w e v e r, th e F e d e ra l R e s e rv e s u p e rv is e s o n ly
S ta te -c h a rte re d b a n k s th a t a re m e m b e r s o f th e
F e d e ra l R e s e rv e S y s te m . If y o u r c o m p la in t is o u t­
s id e o u r a u th o r ity , w e ’ ll re fe r it to th e p ro p e r re g u ­
la to ry a g e n c y o r d ir e c t yo u to th e rig h t kin d o f h e lp .

here’s what to do
F irs t tr y to s o lv e y o u r p ro b le m d ir e c tly w ith b a n k
p e rs o n n e l. If y o u c a n 't , u s e th e fo r m a tta c h e d to
th is p a m p h le t to let us k n o w a b o u t y o u r p ro b le m .
P le a s e m a il y o u r c o m p la in t to th e D ir e c to r , D iv i­
sio n o f C o n s u m e r A ffa irs , B o a rd o f G o v e rn o rs of
th e F e d e ra l R e s e rv e S y s te m , W a s h in g to n , D .C .
2 0 5 5 1 . O r y o u m a y g e t in to u c h w ith th e F e d e ra l
R e s e rv e B a n k s e rv in g th e D is tr ic t in w h ic h th e b a n k
is lo c a te d , a s lis te d o n th e b a c k o f th is p a m p h le t.
F e d e ra l e n fo r c e m e n t a g e n c ie s fo r o th e r fin a n c ia l
in s titu tio n s a re a ls o lis te d .

here’s what we’ll do
W e w ill re s p o n d w ith in 15 d a y s . W e ’ ll try to
a n s w e r y o u r q u e s tio n s in fu ll w ith in th a t tim e . If
th a t ’ s n o t p o s s ib le , o u r re p ly w ill s e t a re a s o n a b le
d a te fo r g e ttin g b a c k to y o u w ith m o r e in fo rm a tio n .
W e ’ ll a ls o le t y o u k n o w if w e ’ve re fe rre d y o u r c o m ­
p la in t o u ts id e th e F e d e ra l R e s e rv e fo r an a n s w e r.

consumer credit laws
T h e F e d e ra l c o n s u m e r c re d it la w s o ffe r you
th e s e m a jo r p r o t e c t io n s :
T h e Truth In L e n d in g A c t re q u ire s d is c lo s u re o f th e
" f in a n c e c h a r g e ” a n d th e “ a n n u a l p e rc e n ta g e
ra te ” — a n d c e rta in o th e r c o s ts a n d te r m s o f c re d it
— so th a t yo u c a n c o m p a r e th e p ric e s o f c re d it
fr o m d iffe r e n t s o u rc e s . It a ls o lim its y o u r lia b ility on
lo s t o r s to le n c re d it c a rd s .
T h e E q u a l C re d it O p p o r tu n ity A c t p ro h ib its d is c r im ­
in a tio n a g a in s t an a p p lic a n t fo r c re d it b e c a u s e o f
a g e , s e x , m a rita l s ta tu s , ra c e , c o lo r , re lig io n , n a ­
tio n a l o rig in , o r re c e ip t o f p u b lic a s s is ta n c e . It a ls o

p ro h ib its d is c r im in a tio n b e c a u s e y o u h a v e m a d e a
g o o d fa ith e x e rc is e o f a n y o f y o u r rig h ts u n d e r th e
F e d e ra l c o n s u m e r c re d it la w s . If y o u 'v e b e e n
d e n ie d c re d it, th e la w re q u ire s th a t yo u b e n o tifie d
in w ritin g a n d g iv e s yo u th e rig h t to re q u e s t th e
re a s o n fo r th e d e n ia l.
T he F a ir C re d it B illin g A c t s e ts up a p ro c e d u re fo r
th e p ro m p t c o r r e c tio n o f e rr o r s o n a c r e d it a c c o u n t
a n d p re v e n ts d a m a g e to y o u r c r e d it ra tin g w h ile
y o u 'r e s e ttlin g a d is p u te .
The F a ir C re d it R e p o r tin g A c t s e ts up a p ro c e d u re
fo r c o r r e c tin g m is ta k e s on y o u r c re d it re c o rd a n d
re q u ire s th a t th e re c o rd b e k e p t c o n fid e n tia l.
The C o n s u m e r L e a s in g A c t re q u ire s d is c lo s u re o f
in fo rm a tio n th a t h e lp s y o u c o m p a r e th e c o s t a n d
te r m s o f o n e le a s e w ith a n o th e r a n d w ith th e c o s t
a n d te r m s o f b u y in g on c re d it o r w ith c a s h .
The R e a l E s ta te S e ttle m e n t P ro c e d u re s A c t re­
q u ire s th a t yo u be g iv e n in fo rm a tio n a b o u t the
s e rv ic e s a n d c o s ts in v o lv e d at “ s e t t le m e n t , ” w h e n
real p ro p e rty tr a n s fe rs fr o m s e lle r to b u y e r.
T h e H o m e M o r tg a g e D is c lo s u r e A c t re q u ire s m o s t
le n d in g in s titu tio n s in m e tro p o lita n a re a s to le t th e
p u b lic k n o w w h e r e th e y m a k e th e ir m o r tg a g e a n d
h o m e im p ro v e m e n t loa n s.
P a m p h le ts d e s c rib in g s o m e o f th e s e la w s in
m o re d e ta il a re a v a ila b le fr o m th e B o a rd o f G o v ­
e rn o rs o r fro m th e F e d e ra l R e s e rv e B a n k in y o u r
D is tric t.

the division of consumer affairs and
consumer advisory council
T h e F e d e ra l R e s e rv e has s e t up a s e p a ra te
o ffic e in W a s h in g to n — th e D iv is io n o f C o n s u m e r
A ffa irs — to h a n d le c o n s u m e r c o m p la in ts . T h is
D iv is io n a ls o w r it e s re g u la tio n s to c a r r y o u t th e
c o n s u m e r c re d it la w s , e n fo r c e s th e s e la w s fo r
S ta te -c h a rte re d b a n k s th a t a re m e m b e r s o f th e
S y s te m , a n d h e lp s b a n k s to c o m p ly w ith th e s e
la w s .
T h e F e d e ra l R e s e rv e is a ls o a d v is e d by a p a n e l
o f e x p e rts in c o n s u m e r c re d it, re p re s e n tin g b o th
b u s in e s s a n d c o n s u m e r in te re s ts a c ro s s th e
c o u n tr y . The C o n s u m e r A d v is o ry C o u n c il m e e ts
fo u r tim e s a y e a r, a n d its m e e tin g s a re o p e n to th e
p u b lic .
W e w e lc o m e y o u r c o m m e n ts a n d s u g g e s tio n s
on a n y c o n s u m e r c r e d it issue .

CQ/VIPLAINT FORM

Federal Reserve System

Nam e

N am e o f Bank

A d d re s s

A d d re s s
S tre e t

C ity

C ity
S ta te

D a y tim e te le p h o n e

S ta te

Z ip

Z ip
A c c o u n t n u m b e r (if a p p lic a b le )

(in c lu d e a re a c o d e )
T h e c o m p la in t in v o lv e s th e fo llo w in g s e r v ic e : C h e c k in g A c c o u n t □
O th e r:

P le a s e s p e c ify

S a v in g s A c c o u n t □

L oan □

_ ______________________________________________________________________________
_

I h a v e a tte m p te d to re s o lv e th is c o m p la in t d ir e c tly w ith th e b a n k : N o □

Yes □

If " N o ” , an a tte m p t s h o u ld be m a d e to c o n ta c t th e b a n k a n d re s o lv e th e c o m p la in t.
If " Y e s ” , n a m e of p e rs o n or d e p a rtm e n t c o n ta c te d i s _____________________________
D a te
M Y C O M P L A IN T IS AS F O L L O W S (B rie fly d e s c rib e th e e v e n ts in th e o rd e r in w h ic h th e y h a p p e n e d , in c lu d in g s p e c ific
d a te s a n d th e b a n k 's a c tio n s to w h ic h y o u o b je c t. E n c lo s e c o p ie s o f a n y p e rtin e n t in fo rm a tio n o r c o rr e s p o n d e n c e th a t
m a y be h e lp fu l. D o no t s e n d us y o u r o n ly c o p y o f a n y d o c u m e n t . ) :

T h is in fo rm a tio n is s o lic ite d u n d e r th e F e d e ra l T ra d e C o m m is s io n Im p ro v e m e n t A c t. P ro v id in g th e in fo rm a tio n is v o lu n ­
ta r y ; c o m p le te in fo rm a tio n is n e c e s s a ry to e x p e d ite in v e s tig a tio n o f y o u r c o m p la in t. R o u tin e use o f th e in fo rm a tio n m a y
in c lu d e d is c lo s in g it to ba n k(s) o r o th e rs in v o lv e d o r to o th e r g o v e rn m e n ta l a g e n c ie s as d e e m e d a p p ro p ria te .
D a t e ______________________

S ig n a t u r e s ______________________________________________

Director, Division of Consumer Affairs
Board of Governors of the
Federal Reserve System
Washington, D.C. 20551


Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, One Federal Reserve Bank Plaza, St. Louis, MO 63102