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Is the CFPB providing any relief to banks if fees change or increase due to COVID-19 issues?

My bank has encountered difficulties obtaining some settlement fees due to title company and attorney office closures, appraiser shortages increasing normal appraisal fees, and similar situations due to COVID-19. Is the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (Bureau) providing any relief to banks if fees change or increase due to COVID-19 issues?

Yes. The Bureau issued an interpretive rule that permits banks to “use revised estimates of settlement charges that consumers would incur in connection with the mortgage transaction if the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the estimate of such settlement charges.” This statement applies whether or not information changes at the Loan Estimate or Closing Disclosure stage of the transaction.

A note of caution: This is not the time to take shortcuts when information is obtainable by undertaking due diligence based on “the best information reasonably available” standard set under Regulation Z. This is an option when that standard cannot be met or when information changes after disclosures have been issued due to COVID-19 issues.

Application of Certain Provisions in the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure Rule and Regulation Z Right of Rescission Rules in Light of the COVID-19 Pandemic

(June 2020)

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