FTC Files Suit Against Third-Party Bill Payment Company


On April 25, 2024​, the FTC announced that it filed a suit against a Washington-based ​third-party bill payment company​ and two of its chief executives ​​for engaging in allegedly ​deceptive ​and misleading ​​practices​ in violation of Section 5(a) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. § 45(a), Section 521 of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLB Act), 15 U.S.C. 23 § 6821, and the Restore Online Shoppers’ Confidence Act (ROSCA), 15 U.S.C. § 8403.

According to the FTC’s complaint​ filed in the Western District of Washington, the ​company ​​misled consumers regarding its relationship with billers to which consumers owed payments, and charged consumers ​junk fees for ​utilizing its third-party bill payment service. The FTC alleges that​ the company misrepresents itself in search engine advertisements and on its website as an official payment channel for various billers, but in fact has no official relationship with the majority of those billers. The FTC further asserts that the company has charged consumers millions of dollars in “delivery fees” ​​ for using its bill payment service, which the consumers would not have paid had they paid their bills through their billers’ official channels.​​ The FTC has also alleged that the company pays consumers’​ bill​s with​​ paper checks that are delivered to the biller days or weeks after the consumer has provided payment to the company, resulting in some consumers being assessed late fees and fines, double-paying bills, or losing services​ due to non-payment. ​According to the FTC, the company has continued to engage in these practices despite receiving numerous complaints from both billers and consumers regarding the practices.​

The FTC is seeking a permanent injunction to prevent future violations of ​​federal law​​, as well as unspecified monetary damages and other relief.