Attorney General Morrisey Urges Veterans to Exercise Caution with Pension Advances

Updated 7 weeks ago by WV Attorney General Patrick Morrisey
CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey urged military veterans to exercise caution when considering a pension advance.

 
A pension advance, like any cash advance, provides the consumer a lump sum of cash with the promise of future repayment. The pension advance model often exchanges upfront cash for high interest rates and a portion of, or all, future pension payments.
 
“Anyone can have difficulty making ends meet, especially retirees and others living on a fixed income,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “It is important that consumers facing such times consider all options to make the best use of their hard-earned dollars.”
 
Pension advance companies often target veterans and military retirees by using patriotic names or logos and may claim to be endorsed by the federal government. Consumers who are unsure should call their pension administrator to ensure a loan is consistent with the Department of Veterans Affairs regulations.
 
Consumers also should consider the following advice:
  • Research the entity offering the advance.
  • Get everything in writing
  • Know the specific amount and time period for payment
  • Avoid loans with high fees and interest
  • Never sign over control of benefits
  • Contact a pension administrator to confirm the legality of such an advance
  • Know the cancellation policy
Credit counseling offers another avenue for those concerned about their finances.
 
If consumers suspect they have been targeted by a pension loan company, they can call the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division at 1-800-368-8808, the Eastern Panhandle Consumer Protection Office in Martinsburg at 304-267-0239 or visit the office online at www.wvago.gov.
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