(Legal Newsline) - Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey announced March
29 that Santander Consumer USA Holdings Inc. will pay $22 million
after allegations it was involved in facilitating unfair, high-rate auto loans
for thousands of car buyers in the state.
Santander, a major subprime auto lender in the state, purportedly
conducted a scheme in which it funded auto loans to thousands of consumers
despite knowing the consumers did not have the basis to afford them.
to Healey’s office, the company knew that much of the consumer information
provided by car dealers was incorrect or inflated.
“After years of combating abuses from subprime mortgage
lenders, these practices are unfortunately familiar,” the attorney general said. “We found that Santander, a leading player in the business of
packaging and reselling subprime auto loans, funded unfair and unaffordable
auto loans for more than 2,000 Massachusetts residents.
first-in-the-nation settlement relating to subprime auto loan funding will
provide relief to thousands of car buyers in Massachusetts and prevent these
practices from being used against our residents.”
Of the $22
million settlement, $16 million will be awarded to consumers as restitution and the other $6 million will go to Massachusetts.