FRANKFORT, KY – Attorney General Daniel Cameron on Thursday announced a $35 million, multi-state settlement with Tempoe, LLC.
The agreement settles allegations that Tempoe systematically misled its customers, leading them to believe that they were agreeing to an installment plan to purchase merchandise when, in reality, those customers were agreeing to lease the merchandise. The complicated structure of the lease agreements meant that customers, over the duration of their leases, often paid double or triple the purchase price of the product.
As part of the settlement, Tempoe is permanently banned from engaging in consumer leasing. All existing leases will be cancelled, and consumers may keep the leased merchandise without any further financial obligation to the company—this amounts to $33 million of "in-kind" financial relief to consumers nationwide. In addition, Tempoe will refrain from reporting negative information about lessees to any consumer reporting agency.
Tempoe has also agreed to pay a total of $1 million to the settling states and $1 million to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which has agreed to a parallel settlement with the company.
"For our free-market system to work, everyone must play by the same rules and follow the law," said Attorney General Cameron. "I'm proud to hold Tempoe accountable for its actions and to provide relief for the Kentuckians who were hurt by its deceptive business practices."
Attorney General Cameron was joined by attorneys general from Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
To read a copy of the settlement, click here.