Pension Advance Transactions: Questionable Business Practices Identified
GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY OFFICE WASHINGTON DC WASHINGTON DC United States
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There have been recent concerns about companies attempting to take advantage of retirees using pension advances. GAO was asked to review business practices related to pension advances. This report 1 describes the number and characteristics of pension advance companies and marketing practices 2 evaluates how pension advance terms compare with those of other products and 3 evaluates the extent to which there is related federal oversight. GAO identified 38 pension advance companies and related marketing practices using company websites and nonpublic databases. GAO conducted a more-detailed nongeneralizable assessment of 19 of these companies selected based on factors such as marketing claims and presence of or lack of complaints. GAO used undercover investigative phone calls to identify additional marketing practices and to obtain pension advance offers. This information was compared with the terms of other financial products, such as personal loans. View videos of undercover investigative calls to selected pension advance companies. GAO also examined the role of selected federal agencies with oversight of consumer protection and pension issues.