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Paul Kiel covers consumer finance for ProPublica.
Recently, his focus has been on debt collection. His work in 2014 was honored as a finalist for a Gerald Loeb Award, a Scripps Howard Award, and a Best in Business Award from the Society of American Business Editors and Writers.
His work in 2013 on high-cost lending was honored as a finalist for both a Gerald Loeb Award and a SABEW Best in Business Award.
He’s produced stories for the Washington Post, National Public Radio, and American Public Media’s Marketplace, among others.
June 1, 9:52 a.m.A story by ProPublica and NPR and a Senate investigation prompt a Missouri nonprofit hospital to change its policies and forgive thousands of patients’ debts. But without similar scrutiny, it’s unclear if other hospitals that sue the poor will change.
May 5, 7:57 a.m.ProPublica spent years gathering data to shed light on how debt collectors use the courts. Today, we run through the most important lessons we learned about a tactic that affects millions.
April 28, 5 a.m.Cheap court fees and looser rules make suing over medical debts as small as $60 easy. Every year Nebraska collection agencies file lawsuits by the tens of thousands.
Dec. 31, 2015, 9 a.m.Due to the racial wealth gap, black families have far less in savings than whites. The consequences can be far-reaching and often severe.
Dec. 28, 2015, 6 a.m.A ProPublica analysis of state court filings reveals that Capital One sues its customers far more than any other bank.
Dec. 3, 2015, 2:32 p.m.Citing ProPublica’s reporting, Missouri’s attorney general proposed reforms to the state court rules to address the prevalence of debt collection suits in black neighborhoods.
Oct. 8, 2015, 11 a.m.America’s out-of-date, unfair laws for collecting debts could be dramatically improved by these simple steps.
Oct. 8, 2015, 8 a.m.The black neighborhoods where collection suits hit hardest
Oct. 8, 2015, 8 a.m.In a first-of-its-kind analysis, ProPublica reveals that the suits are far more common in black communities than white ones.
Oct. 8, 2015, 8 a.m.An explanation of how we analyzed whether debt collection lawsuits disproportionately impact black communities.
Aug. 14, 2015, 8 a.m.After a ProPublica investigation of USA Discounters’ lending practices last summer, a barrage of lawsuits, regulatory inquiries and changes to Defense Department policies followed.
March 27, 2015, 12:07 p.m.New rules put forward by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau would have a major impact on the high-cost loan industry. But if history is any guide, lenders will quickly find some loopholes.
Jan. 22, 2015, 6 a.m.Prompted by an investigation by ProPublica and NPR, Sen. Charles Grassley asks a Missouri nonprofit hospital to explain why it seizes the wages of thousands of its patients.
Jan. 15, 2015, 11:33 a.m.Nonprofit hospitals get big tax breaks for providing care for patients who can't afford it. Under new IRS rules these hospitals must take extra steps to inform poor patients they may qualify for financial assistance.
Dec. 26, 2014, 12:25 p.m.In the latest move against companies targeting military customers, federal regulators prohibit two Virginia-based lenders from suing out-of-state debtors in Virginia courts. The companies were featured in a ProPublica story in July.
Dec. 22, 2014, 1 p.m.Public hospitals can be among the most aggressive in collecting debts from poor patients, not only garnishing their wages, but cleaning out their bank accounts. “It makes me sick,” said one legal aid attorney.
Dec. 19, 2014, 6 a.m.One Missouri hospital has sued thousands of uninsured patients who couldn't pay for their care, then grabbed a hefty portion of their paychecks to cover the bills. "We will be paying them off until we die," one debtor said.
Oct. 7, 2014, 2:21 p.m.USA Discounters, promising to change how it pursues military debtors, will now be known as USA Living.
Sep. 26, 2014, 3:05 p.m.Acknowledging that a previous law did not go far enough, Defense Department proposes new rules to protect service members from high-cost lenders.
Sep. 16, 2014, 5 a.m.Critics say the 1968 federal law that allows collectors to take 25 percent of debtors' wages, or every penny in their bank accounts, is out of date and overly harsh.
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