FTC, Treasury Sign Debt Collection Agreement...

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The Federal Trade Commission and the Treasury Department today signed an agreement providing for Treasury to collect millions of dollars in judgments obtained in FTC consumer protection cases. The FTC is the first agency to use the services of Treasury's Financial Management Service (FMS), the agency responsible for consolidating collection of more that $50 billion of delinquent debt owed to the Federal Government.

"The FTC has been extraordinarily successful at gaining court-imposed monetary judgments and redress for consumers victimized by fraudulent marketing schemes," said Jodie Bernstein, Director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection. "Now we're putting professional debt collectors on the job to recover the funds owed to U.S. taxpayers and freeing FTC lawyers and consumer protection specialists to do what they do best," she said. "This is a smart way for the government to do business," she said.

Bernstein and Victoria McDowell, Director of FMS' Debt Management Services, executed a memorandum of understanding to turn over the debt collection duties, Monday. "FMS looks forward to a successful partnership with the FTC, for the benefit of the public," said McDowell.

The Financial Management Service will collect debts owed to any federal agency and will fund its collection services through surcharges imposed on debtors. The service will use a range of collection tools permitted by applicable law. FMS currently is in negotiations with other agencies to help facilitate the collection of debt owed to them.

For further information, contact:

Department of the Treasury
Mary Hewitt

Federal Trade Commission
Claudia Bourne Farrell

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