New York was one of 46 states to reach a settlement with the now-bankrupt Hollywood Video chain of movie-rental stores over late fees tacked on to the account of 3.3 million customers before it went under, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced Friday.
The settlement could affect up to 200,000 New Yorkers, according to Schneiderman’s office. The settlement affects customers of Hollywood Video and its parent company, Movie Gallery.
“Imagine applying for a mortgage only to find your credit report is tarnished because of a video rental late fee you didn’t even owe,” Schneiderman said in a statement. “This settlement will provide important safeguards to protect consumers against abusive debt collection practices and will ensure that consumers will not have their credit harmed as a result of any outstanding fees claimed to be owed to Hollywood Video or Movie Gallery.”
The fees were often erroneously added to a customer’s account, according to Schneiderman’s office, including many who hadn’t visited the store in years.