Calif. sues JPMorgan Chase over debt collection

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - California's attorney general is suing one of the nation's largest banks, alleging that JPMorgan Chase & Co. used illegal tactics in its debt collection efforts against about 100,000 credit card holders.

The lawsuit filed Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court says the company filed thousands of debt collection lawsuits each month between 2008 and 2011 using improper practices that shortcut procedures required under California law.

A company spokesman could not immediately be reached for comment.

Attorney General Kamala Harris says the company's methods included "robo-signing" legal documents as it flooded the court system seeking judgments and wage garnishment orders against borrowers. Robo-signing was widely used in mortgage foreclosures until it was outlawed.

Chase is one of five major banks that settled with California and other states after the housing meltdown.

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