Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey announced a settlement with Tempoe, LLC, resolving a multistate investigation into Tempoe’s advertising and leasing to consumers through retailers across the nation. The investigation revealed that Tempoe’s marketing and sales practices often misled consumers to believe they were signing up for an installment plan or credit sale when, in reality, they were entering into a lease agreement. The complicated structure and lack of required disclosures of the lease agreements often resulted in consumers paying 2-3 times the purchase price of the product or service.
“My priority as Attorney General will always be to protect Missourians, which includes holding companies who prey on consumers accountable,” said Attorney General Bailey. “Our office will continue to use every legal resource available to pursue justice for victims of consumer schemes.”
Through this settlement, Tempoe is permanently banned from engaging in future consumer leasing activities. All existing leases will be canceled, and consumers may retain the leased merchandise in their possession without any further financial obligation to Tempoe – resulting in approximately $33 million of “in-kind” financial relief to consumers nationwide. Additionally, Tempoe shall not provide negative information regarding lessees to any consumer reporting agency.
Consumers with existing leases do not need to take any action as Tempoe has automatically canceled their account(s) as a result of this settlement.
Finally, as part of this settlement, Tempoe will 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 Bailey filed the settlement agreement in Cole County.
Forty-one (41) states and the District of Columbia participated in the settlement. Joining Missouri were the states of Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, 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, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia.