2022 Latest CFPB Updates

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

The Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) is responsible for consumer protection in the financial sector. CFPB’s jurisdiction includes credit unions,  banks, securities firms, payday lenders, mortgage-servicing operations, foreclosure relief services, debt collectors and other financial companies operating in the United States.

NASCUS closely monitors CFPB developments and responds to request for comments on rules impacting the credit union system.

2022 Updates (see archives at the bottom for previous years)


Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Launches Initiative to Save Americans Billions in Junk Fees
Agency Seeks Public Input on Fees on Bank Accounts, Credit Cards, and Other Financial Products

January 26, 2022 — The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) launched an initiative to save households billions of dollars a year by reducing exploitative junk fees charged by banks and financial companies. Today’s request is a chance for the public to share input that will help shape the agency’s rulemaking and guidance agenda, as well as its enforcement priorities in the coming months and years.

“Many financial institutions obscure the true price of their services by luring customers with enticing offers and then charging excessive junk fees,” said CFPB Director Rohit Chopra. “By promoting competition and ridding the market of illegal practices, we hope to save Americans billions.”

Companies across the U.S. economy are increasingly charging inflated and back-end fees to households and families. This new “fee economy” distorts our free market system by concealing the true price of products from the competitive process. For example, hotels and concert venues advertise rates, only to add “resort fees” and “service fees” after the fact. And fees purportedly charged to cover individual expenses, like paperwork processing, can often greatly exceed the actual cost of that service.

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Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to Examine Colleges’ In-House Lending Practices
CFPB Publishes Oversight Protocols for Institutional Student Lending

January 20, 2022 — Today, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced it will begin examining the operations of post-secondary schools, such as for-profit colleges, that extend private loans directly to students. The CFPB is issuing an update to its exam procedures including a new section on institutional student loans. As the CFPB begins its supervision, the exam procedures inform the industry about practices that CFPB examiners will review, including placing enrollment restrictions, withholding transcripts, improperly accelerating payments, failing to issue refunds, and maintaining improper lending relationships.

“Schools that offer students loans to attend their classes have a lot of power over their students’ education and financial future,” said CFPB Director Rohit Chopra. “It’s time to open up the books on institutional student lending to ensure all students with private student loans are not harmed by illegal practices.”

Private education loans are extensions of credit made to students or parents to fund undergraduate, graduate, and other forms of postsecondary education. Private education loans may be offered by banks, non-profits, nonbanks, credit unions, state-affiliated organizations, and institutions of higher education, including both for-profit schools and non-profit schools. These loans are typically not affiliated with federal student loan programs administered by the U.S. Department of Education. When the loans are made directly to students by the school they attend, they are often referred to as institutional student loans.

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CFPB Releases Report on Diversity and Inclusion within Financial Services
By Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (OMWI)

January 19, 2022 — Today the Bureau’s Office of Minority Women and Inclusion (OMWI) released the CFPB Report on Diversity and Inclusion within Financial Services. As part of the mandate of Section 342 of the Dodd-Frank Act, the Bureau’s Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (OMWI) is charged with developing standards for assessing diversity and inclusion at the financial entities the Bureau regulates. To further that effort, CFPB engaged in analysis of public data to gain a better understanding of diversity and inclusion within the financial services sector and compiled a report to share its findings. The Report can help industry understand more about diversity and inclusion initiatives that their peers are undertaking and the various options available to entities of different sizes.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream of racial and economic equality. In his 1964 Nobel peace prize address he stated “There is nothing new about poverty. What is new, however, is that we have the resources to get rid of it.” The CFPB’s latest report on diversity and inclusion within financial services highlights the activities that financial institutions have engaged in to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion. Building a diverse team that reflects all consumers ensures that an organization has an understanding of the needs of the entire community. We encourage you to review the report and its data to gain an understanding of the public facing and reported internal diversity, equity and inclusion programming at financial institutions. Based on the research and analysis, the Bureau has outlined recommendations for large, midsize and small institutions.

Read the full report


CFPB Issues Compliance Bulletin on Medical Debt and the No Surprises Act

January 13, 2022 — The No Surprises Act took effect on January 1, 2022. The Act provides additional protections for certain consumers from surprise medical bills under certain circumstances.

Today, the Bureau issued a Compliance Bulletin that reminds debt collectors of their obligation to comply with the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act’s prohibition on misrepresentations and unfair practices, including when collecting medical debts covered by the No Surprises Act. The Bulletin also reminds consumer reporting agencies and information furnishers to comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act’s accuracy and dispute resolution requirements, including when furnishing information about or reporting medical debts covered by the No Surprises Act.

You can access the Compliance Bulletin here.


CFPB’s public inquiry on buy now, pay later

January 12, 2022 —Several weeks ago, we issued a market-monitoring inquiry into “buy now, pay later” (BNPL) products and business practices. Now we are inviting anyone interested in this market to submit comments — including families, small businesses, and international regulators.

Use of BNPL has seen astronomical growth. Companies like Affirm, Afterpay, Klarna, PayPal, and Zip (formerly Quadpay) have become almost ubiquitous in the retail market since the pandemic. This past holiday season, usage spiked even higher, especially among young people. Some analysts have suggested that BNPL has rerouted big holiday shopping money away from the credit card companies towards these companies, putting an enormous amount of consumer debt on their books.

People encounter BNPL credit at the point of sale either online or at traditional retail stores. The loans are presented as a type of deferred payment option that generally allows someone to split a purchase into smaller installment payments, often with a down payment of 25 percent. The application process is quick, involving relatively little information from the buyer, and the buyer usually pays no interest.

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CFPB Releases Report Detailing Consumer Complaint Response Deficiencies of the Big Three Credit Bureaus Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion routinely failed to fully respond to consumers with errors

JAN 05, 2022 — A new analysis by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) reveals how changes in complaint responses provided by nationwide consumer reporting companies resulted in fewer meaningful responses and less consumer relief. In 2021, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion together reported relief in response to less than 2% of covered complaints, down from nearly 25% of covered complaints in 2019.

“America’s credit reporting oligopoly has little incentive to treat consumers fairly when their credit reports have errors,” said CFPB Director Rohit Chopra. “Today’s report is further evidence of the serious harms stemming from their faulty financial surveillance business model.”

Credit reporting plays a critical role in consumers’ lives and has an enormous reach beyond consumer financial services. More than 200 million Americans have credit files, and lenders rely on this information to decide whether to approve loans and on what terms. Consumer reporting also informs decisions about employment, insurance, housing, and even essential utilities. For consumers, inaccuracies on credit reports drive up the cost of credit and severely limit opportunities, such as starting a small business or buying a new home.

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Archives

2021 CFPB Updates

2020 CFPB Updates

2019 CFPB Updates