Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

 

2017 Initiatives

Issue

Expected

Details

Fair lending/Access to Credit for Small Businesses

July 2017

CFPB on May 10 launched an inquiry into ways to gather and use new and existing information to identify the financing needs of small businesses, especially those owned by women and minorities. Small businesses typically need access to credit to take advantage of growth opportunities, yet public information on this lending market is inconsistent and incomplete. The Request for Information asks for public feedback to help the Bureau better understand how to bridge this information gap. The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act requires the CFPB to collect data about small business lending to help identify needs and opportunities in the market and to facilitate enforcement of fair lending laws. CFPB is also releasing a white paper reviewing the available evidence concerning the small business lending landscape. The comment period for the public inquiry will end 60 days after the Request for Information is officially published in the Federal Register.

Fair lending priorities in the New Year Throughout 2017 The bureau has outlined its priorities for 2017 under fair lending in three broad areas:
  • Redlining. We will continue to evaluate whether lenders have intentionally avoided lending in minority neighborhoods.
  • Mortgage and Student Loan Servicing. We will determine whether some borrowers who are behind on their mortgage or student loan payments may have more difficulty working out a new solution with the servicer because of their race or ethnicity.
  • Small Business Lending. Congress expressed concern that women-owned and minority-owned businesses may experience discrimination when they apply for credit, and has required the CFPB to take steps to ensure their fair access to credit.

Fair lending priorities in the new year

 

2016 Initiatives

Issue

Expected

Details

Overdraft Programs

January 2016

CFPB is researching/analyzing policy options for rulemaking on overdraft programs.  To date, the CFPB has produced a White Paper (June 2013) & a Report (July 2014).  The bureau has indicated a number of issues of concern such as consumer “opt in” consent, overdraft coverage limits, transaction posting order, overdraft/insufficient funds fee structures and involuntary account closures. 

Prepaid Cards & Similar Products; Final Rule-

Spring 2016

CFPB working on a final rule addressing Prepaid Cards & similar products. This follows a proposed rule issued in 2014. The rules would:

  • bring prepaid account products under Reg E
  • amend Reg E & Reg Z to regulate prepaid accounts with overdraft and credit features

Payday, Auto Title Lending & Similar Lending Products

First Quarter 2016

Any proposed rule will incorporate feedback provided by CFPB’s Small Business Advisory Review Panel.  CFPB has released an outline of proposals it is considering. The CFPB is considering:

  • ability to repay (ATR) requirements
  • limits on the ability to rollover loans
  • restricting “harmful” payment collection practices (requiring prior notice before accessing deposit accounts and limiting the # of times an account can be tapped for payment.)

Arbitration Agreements;
Proposed Rule Anticipated

Sometime in 2016

DFA directed CFPB to study the use of arbitration agreements in connection with consumer financial products/services.  After 3-year study, CFPB issued this report to Congress. In 2015 CFPB issued “Outline of Proposals under Consideration.” Seems CFPB considering proposals that would prohibit the application of arbitration agreements to class action cases in court and that would require arbitration disputes and awards  be reported to the CFPB.

Debt Collection Activities

Sometime in 2016

In November 2013 CFPB issued ANPR related to debt collection practices.  It is anticipated the CFPB will address the following in rulemaking sometime in 2016:

  • excessive/inconvenient collection calls
  • misleading representations with regard to collection litigation
  • false threats of litigation
  • prohibited disclosures to third parties
  • false/misleading debt collection representations

 

CFPB resources


CFPB’s Small Entity Compliance Guide: Ability to Repay and Qualified Mortgage Rule
2013 CFPB Bulletin Archive

2013 CFPB Rules Archive