Texas Power Companies Investigated After Storm | Cryptocurrency Investors Deceived | Student Loan Relief | Cozen O’Connor

Elections 2022 AG

Republican candidate seeks revenge in 2022 against incumbent Minnesota attorney general

  • Doug Wardlow, General Counsel for My Pillow, Inc. and former State Representative, has announced that he will again seek the Republican nomination for Minnesota AG.
  • If he received the nomination, Wardlow’s challenge to Democratic Attorney General Keith Ellison would be a rematch of the 2018 election, which Ellison won by a 49% to 45% margin.
  • For more AG election news, insights and polls, visit the Cozen O’Connor State AG Election Tracker.

Consumer protection

Timeshare Exit Company Will Pay Over $ 220,000 For Misleading Consumers

  • Missouri AG Eric Schmitt obtained a default judgment against timeshare exit company Martin Management Group LLC and its owner (collectively “Martin Management”) on allegations that it collected up-front fees and failed to provide promised services in violation of the Act of Missouri Marketing Practices.
  • The complaint alleged that Martin Management solicited large sums of money from clients by falsely guaranteeing reimbursement of their payment if they were unable to obtain a waiver of their timeshare commitments within 180 days and instructed clients to redirect maintenance fees. timeshare itself, putting multiple clients in arrears. with your timeshare holding companies.
  • According to the Attorney General’s office, the judgment awards more than $ 222,000 to the state, including approximately $ 170,000 for restitution and $ 52,000 in civil penalties and attorney costs. The ruling also permanently prohibits Martin Management from offering or selling outbound timeshare services in the state.
  • As previously reported, AG Schmitt separately sued Brian Scroggs and four exit timeshare companies under his control over similar allegations.

Bipartisan Group of Attorneys General Urges FCC to Help Increase Access to Remote Learning

  • A bipartisan group of 30 AGs, led by Colorado AG Phil Weiser and Nebraska AG Doug Peterson, sent a comment letter to the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) urging the FCC to expand its E-Rate program, which provides funding to expand school and library broadband connectivity to support remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The letter was sent in support of petitions from several states, including Colorado, seeking temporary waiver of certain restrictions on the E-Rate program to allow the use of E-Rate funds for Wi-Fi access points and other Internet solutions. broadband for students who lack adequate connectivity to participate in distance education.
  • The letter argues that the FCC has the authority to amend or waive the E-Rate program rules to allow it to support a variety of technology solutions to the extraordinary need for remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. The letter also states that expanding Internet access through the E-Rate program can help ensure educational equity.

Democratic Attorneys General Urge Universal Federal Student Loan Relief

  • A group of 17 Democratic AGs, led by Massachusetts AG Maura Healey and New York AG Letitia James, sent a letter to the US Congress urging the adoption of House and Senate resolutions calling on the Biden administration to pay off up to $ 50,000 in federal student debt. for every federal student loan borrower.
  • The letter contends that the broad cancellation of federal student loan debt will provide economic relief to millions of borrowers and a boost to the economy.
  • The letter further notes that many federal student loan borrowers were struggling to repay their loans even before the COVID-19 pandemic, that the current payment programs in place do not provide sufficient opportunities for borrowers facing financial difficulties to manage their debts during the current economic crisis. and that failure to manage federal student loan payments can have catastrophic consequences for borrowers, including wage garnishment, loss of tax credits, and seizure of social security payments.


Texas power companies investigated for winter storm power outages

  • Texas AG Ken Paxton issued Civil Investigation Lawsuits (“CID”) under the Texas Deceptive Business Practices Act – Consumer Protection Act to 12 electric companies, including the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, Inc. (“ERCOT”) related to statewide power outages in the wake of the recent winter storm that hit the state and left millions of residents without power or heat.
  • CIDs seek information, documents, and communications on companies’ emergency plans, pricing policies, and storm-related power outages, among other things.
  • The CIDs set a deadline of March 15, 2021 for power companies to meet production demands.

Financial industry

Cryptocurrency Platforms and Sponsors Targeted by Allegedly Deceptive Conduct

  • New York AG Letitia James sued cryptocurrency trading platform Coinseed, Inc. and its two top executives (collectively “Coinseed”) over allegations that it was operating illegally and defrauding investors in violation of New York’s Martin Law.
  • The lawsuit alleges that Coinseed raised funds on an offering of unregistered securities and misled investors with false claims about the experience and knowledge of its staff. The complaint seeks restitution, restitution and precautionary measures.
  • AG James also reached an agreement with iFinex Inc., the operator of the Bitfinex cryptocurrency platform, and related companies (collectively “Bitfinex”) and with the issuer of a cryptocurrency called “tether”, Tether Holdings Limited and related companies (collectively “Tether”) To resolve allegations that Bitfinex and Tether made false statements to investors in violation of New York’s Martin Law.
  • According to the settlement agreement with Bitfinex and Tether, AG’s office investigation found that the companies allegedly promoted “tether” as a stablecoin, a cryptocurrency backed by real dollar reserves, even though Tether had no access to the bank and sometimes had no reserves. to support the “straps” in circulation. Furthermore, Bitfinex allegedly concealed massive losses and misled its clients and the market regarding its liquidity problems.
  • Under the terms of the settlement agreement, among other things, Bitfinex and Tether will pay $ 18.5 million in fines to the state. Bitfinex and Tether are also prohibited from doing business with New Yorkers and must report their efforts to exclude New Yorkers from their business activities.

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