For Immediate Release:
Tuesday, September 12, 2023
Contact: Nazneen Ahmed
(RALEIGH) Attorney General Josh Stein today announced a $35 million settlement with leasing company Tempoe, LLC following an investigation into Tempoe’s advertising and leasing practices. A bipartisan multistate investigation of 42 attorneys general revealed that Tempoe’s marketing and sales practices often misled people to believe they were signing up for an installment plan or credit sale when they were actually entering into a lease agreement. The lack of transparency and complicated structure of these lease agreements caused confusion and led to customers paying two to three times the purchase price of the product or service.
Tempoe will be cancelling all existing leases and customers may keep the leased merchandise without owing any future payments. Customers will receive approximately $33 million in in-kind financial relief nationwide. Consumers with existing leases do not need to take any action as Tempoe has automatically cancelled their account(s) as a result of this settlement.
“This settlement is another step in the right direction my office is taking to ensure that predatory leasing companies can’t take advantage of North Carolinians,” said Attorney General Josh Stein. “I will continue to do everything in my power to prevent companies from deceiving and ripping off hardworking people.”
Tempoe is permanently banned from engaging in future consumer leasing activities. Additionally, Tempoe shall not provide negative information regarding lessees to any consumer reporting agency.
Tempoe will also pay $2 million — $1 million to the states and jurisdictions participating in this settlement and $1 million to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which has agreed to a parallel settlement resolving the same alleged misconduct.
Attorney General Stein is joined in this settlement by the Attorneys General of the District of Columbia, Nebraska, Iowa, Tennessee, Illinois, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Texas, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia.
A copy of the settlement is available here.