Category Archives: Federal Agencies

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HUD Acts to Revive Two Fair Housing Policies

Roughly three months ago, President Biden signed an executive order that, among other things, directed HUD to reevaluate earlier agency decisions perceived to weaken the Fair Housing Act. In response to this directive, HUD has submitted draft rules to the Office of Management and Budget that would roll back two significant changes made by the … Continue Reading

CFPB Signals Continued Progress Toward Dodd-Frank 1071 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

On 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 … Continue Reading

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Issues Statement Regarding Small Dollar Lending and Signals Return to Prior Policy

On March 23, 2021, the CFPB issued a brief statement highlighting its position regarding “consumer harms in the small dollar lending market” and likely future action to reverse the previous CFPB administration’s policy regarding the industry. The next day, the CFPB provided its Consumer Response Annual Report for 2020 to Congress, which stated the complaint … Continue Reading

Although the COVID-19 Pandemic Persists, So Does the Constitution

Landlords in the state of Texas won a battle over their ability to conduct residential evictions when a federal court struck down the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) broad eviction moratorium last Thursday. On February 25, Judge John Barker of the Eastern District of Texas granted summary judgment in favor of a group of landlords … Continue Reading

Acting CFPB Director Uejio Reiterates Commitment to Issuing Regulations Enacting Dodd-Frank 1071

On 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 … Continue Reading

Untouchable No More: Reinforcements Arrive for TCPA Defendants Battling the FCC’s Aggressive Expansion of the Statute

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) was signed into law almost 30 years ago when around 3% of the population owned cellular telephones and no one had heard of – let alone sent – a text message. Since that time, the legislature has substantively amended the TCPA only once to create a government debt exception. … Continue Reading

GSE Deferral Programs Continue to Pose Risk for Mortgage Servicers

In mid May 2020, we highlighted that the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (GSEs) COVID-19 payment deferral programs put mortgage servicers at risk of violating some of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) Mortgage Servicing Rules in Regulation X. When originally introduced, the GSEs’ COVID-19 payment deferral programs seemed to require servicers to offer a loss … Continue Reading

OCC Releases Final True Lender Rule

On October 27, 2020, the OCC released its final True Lender Rule. As discussed earlier on this blog, the OCC’s rule is designed to clarify the “true lender” doctrine, a legal test utilized by courts and regulators to determine whether a bank or its non-bank partner is the actual lender in a credit transaction. The … Continue Reading

Facilitating Ransomware Payments Entails Sanctions Risks, OFAC Warns

The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) issued an advisory on October 1, 2020, warning companies that engage with the victims of ransomware attacks that they run the risk of violating U.S. sanctions by facilitating ransomware payments. Ransomware attacks have increased in number and sophistication in recent years and have netted larger and … Continue Reading

State Attorneys General Challenge FDIC’s Madden Fix

In early August 2020, several state attorneys general filed suit against the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) challenging the OCC’s proposed “Madden Fix.” Notably, while the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) also issued their own Madden Fix, the agency was not named as a defendant in the initial lawsuit. As such, it … Continue Reading

Agencies Offer Regulatory Assistance in Disaster Affected Areas

On the first day of National Preparedness Month, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the National Credit Union Administration, and the Conference of State Bank Supervisors issued a joint statement recognizing the impact of Hurricane Laura and the California … Continue Reading

No Foreclosures or Evictions on Federally Backed Mortgage Loans until 2021

Borrowers with federally backed mortgage loans facing financial difficulty can breathe a little easier today. All of the federal agencies regulating such loans have announced that they will extend the moratoriums on foreclosure and evictions for single-family properties until December 31, 2020. Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) issued a press release on August 27, 2020 … Continue Reading

DOJ Tells Investment Adviser that Payment to Foreign Government-Owned Bank Will Not Prompt FCPA Enforcement Action

On August 14, 2020, the Department of Justice (DOJ) issued its first Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) Opinion Procedure Release in six years. In the opinion, DOJ advised that it would not bring an enforcement action against a U.S.-based investment adviser if the firm moved forward with paying an advisory fee to a foreign investment … Continue Reading

New FAQ Responses to Small Dollar Rule Address Auto and Mortgage Lending, Payment Transfers and Notices Inclusion

On Tuesday, August 11, 2020, the CFPB issued a second round of answers to frequently asked questions related to the Small Dollar Rule. The FAQ responses range from addressing more nuanced provisions of the payment provision portion of the rule to the overall coverage of the rule. Covered Loan Coverage For the most part, auto … Continue Reading

CFPB Releases Small Business Lender Compliance Cost Survey to Aid in Dodd-Frank 1071 Rulemaking

Recently, the CFPB released an online survey designed to collect information from “institutions engaged in small business financing” regarding one-time costs of compliance with Dodd-Frank 1071. Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act, which we have discussed in detail on this blog, creates robust reporting requirements for lenders engaged in lending to women-owned, minority-owned, and small … Continue Reading

State Attorneys General Challenge OCC Madden Fix

Last Wednesday, the attorneys general of Illinois, California, and New York filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California challenging the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency’s proposed “Madden Fix.” This proposed rule, which we have discussed in detail, is designed to resolve some of the legal … Continue Reading

Small Dollar Rule Stay Requested to Be Lifted in Recent Joint Status Report

With the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Seila Law and Director Kathleen Kraninger’s ratification of the payment provisions of the Payday, Vehicle Title, and Certain High-Cost Installment Loans Rule (the “Small Dollar Rule”), the CFSA and the CFPB have submitted a joint status report in the stayed case pending in the Western District of Texas. … Continue Reading

OCC Proposes Clarification to True Lender Doctrine

Earlier this week, the OCC released a proposed rule designed to address the “true lender” doctrine, a legal test utilized by courts and regulators to determine whether a bank or its non-bank partner is the actual lender in a credit transaction. This doctrine has led to uncertainty in the fintech and bank-partnership spaces, in large … Continue Reading

OCC, FDIC Issue Long-Awaited Valid-When-Made “Madden Fix”

Recently, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) issued final rules designed to resolve the uncertainty created by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision in Madden v. Midland Funding, 786 F.3d 246 (2d Cir. 2015). In Madden, the court called into doubt the valid-when-made doctrine, … Continue Reading

CFPB Rescinds Small Dollar Rule Ability to Repay Provisions However Payment Provisions Remain

On July 7, 2020, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued its final rule in regard to so-called small dollar loans. The biggest change from the CFPB’s original iteration of the rule, the 2017 Payday, Vehicle Title, and Certain High-Cost Installment Loans Rule (“small dollar rule”) is the Bureau’s decision to rescind the ability to … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Holds That Part of CFPB’s Structure Is Unconstitutional

This morning, the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in Seila Law v. CFPB. Authoring the opinion for a five-justice majority, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) single-director configuration, in which the CFPB’s director can only be removed for a specific list of reasons, was unconstitutional. However, the … Continue Reading

FTC and NY AG Target Merchant Cash Advance Companies

On June 10, 2020, the Federal Trade Commission and the  New York Office of the Attorney General filed actions against two merchant cash advance (MCA) companies – RCG Advances and Ram Capital Funding – and individuals associated with both companies in the Southern District of New York and the Supreme Court of the State of … Continue Reading

Dodd Frank 1071 Update: CFPB Status Report Sheds Light on Implementation

In January, we discussed the upcoming implementation of Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act, which amends the Equal Credit Opportunity Act to require certain reporting requirements for specific categories of business loans. The implementation of Section 1071, which contains reporting and disclosure requirements that are comparable to the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA), through an … Continue Reading

CFPB Issues No-Action Letter Template for an Online Loss Mitigation Platform

On May 22, 2020, the CFPB issued a No-Action Letter (NAL) Template to a software company utilizing an internet-based platform for submission and processing of loss mitigation applications. Mortgage servicers may use the NAL Template to apply for NALs if they wish to implement the web-based loss mitigation platform. The CFPB also issued a statement … Continue Reading
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