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Chris Friedman is a regulatory compliance attorney and litigator who focuses on helping consumer finance companies and small business lenders, as well as banks, fintech companies, and other participants in the financial services industry, address the challenges of operating in a highly regulated sector. Chris focuses on both small business lenders and alternative business finance products and has helped non-bank small business lenders, banks who make small business loans, commercial credit counselors, lead generators, and others in the industry. He helps clients launch new products, conduct due diligence, engage in compliance reviews, evaluate litigation risk, and solve some of the unique legal problems faced by companies who work with small businesses. In that vein, Chris has written extensively about the upcoming rulemaking related to Dodd-Frank 1071, which will require data collection and reporting by companies making loans to certain small businesses.

Recent Updates Concerning the Home Mortgage Disclosure ActThe Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has been busy over the last few months laying out what appears to be a broad regulatory agenda. As discussed in this blog, the Bureau has issued an industry notice emphasizing industry preparedness related to COVID-19 forbearance plans, issued proposed COVID-19-related amendments to the Mortgage Servicing Rules, suggested

CFPB Proposes Delay to Implementation of Its Debt Collection RulesYesterday, the CFPB issued a proposed rule that would extend implementation of both parts of its debt collection rule by 60 days — from November 30, 2021, to January 29, 2022. The debt collection rule, which we have discussed here in detail, addresses numerous topics related to debt collection, including debt collection call volume,

CFPB Signals Continued Progress Toward Dodd-Frank 1071 Notice of Proposed RulemakingOn the heels of CFPB Acting Director Dave Uejio’s recently released statement to agency staff members, the Bureau again signaled that it is making progress toward issuing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) enacting Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (the Dodd-Frank Act). Specifically, in late February, the CFPB

On March 31, 2021, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) rescinded seven recent policy statements and one bulletin in an effort to ensure compliance with consumer protection laws and reinforce its supervisory and enforcement authority. These rescissions are effective April 1, 2021.

The policy statements, which were issued between March 26 through June 3, 2020,

Second Circuit Rules on Landlord Fair Housing Act Liability for Ignoring Tenant-on-Tenant Racial HarassmentOn March 21, 2021, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held en banc in Francis v. Kings Park Manor, Inc., et al. (Francis II) that landlords, who do not have discriminatory intent, are not liable under the Fair Housing Act (FHA) for ignoring tenant-on-tenant racial harassment in their buildings.

Acting CFPB Director Uejio Reiterates Commitment to Issuing Regulations Enacting Dodd-Frank 1071On February 4, 2021, acting CFPB Director Dave Uejio published a blog post sharing statements recently made to the staff of the CFPB’s Division of Research, Markets, and Regulations (RMR). In his post, Uejio stressed two policy priorities for the CFPB: “(1) relief for consumers facing hardship due to COVID-19 and the related economic crisis

CFPB Releases Observations of COVID-19 Impacts to Small Business Lending through PPP Loans and Potential Fair Lending RisksAs we recently noted, the CFPB released the 23rd issue of its Supervisory Highlights report, focusing on COVID-19 prioritized assessments. In the report, the CFPB identified small business lending as an area that poses a risk of consumer harm. In particular, the CFPB focuses its discussion of small business lending on the Paycheck

FHA Clarifies That DACA Classified Residents Are Permitted to Apply for FHA-Insured MortgagesOn January 20, 2021, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) released guidance clarifying its definition of the term “lawful residency.” Under the updated guidance, HUD makes clear that individuals classified under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) and are legally permitted to

FTC’s Comment on ECOA and Regulation B Signals Continued Focus on Small Business LendingLast year, the CFPB issued a notice and request for information on the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) and Regulation B. Specifically, the CFPB sought “comments and information to identify opportunities to prevent credit discrimination, encourage responsible innovation, promote fair, equitable, and nondiscriminatory access to credit, address potential regulatory uncertainty, and develop viable solutions to

Florida Court Affirms That Merchant Cash Advance Product Not Subject to Usury StatuteThis month, a Florida appellate court held that a merchant cash advance (MCA) purchase and sale agreement was not a “disguised loan” and, therefore, was not subject to Florida’s criminal usury statute. MCA purchase and sale agreements, which offer merchants a fast and efficient way to obtain funding for their operations, are not loans. Rather,