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Compliance News

The latest compliance news items. Past months’ news items are found under the specific Compliance Topic page related to the news item.

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February  | March

March News

  • FTC Proposes Amendments to Safeguards and Privacy Rules (3/20/19)
    The FTC released two proposals on March 5 to update their version of the GLBA privacy rule and their Safeguards Rule (requiring companies to have in place procedures to safeguard customer information). The proposed changes would bring the rules into line with changes implemented by Congress through the Dodd-Frank Act in 2010 and the FAST Act in 2015, which modified the annual privacy notice requirement under the Gramm-Leach Bliley Act. Comments are due 60 days after Federal Register publication. Contact Rob Rowe​ for more information.​​
  • ABA Urges Extension of Compliance Date of CFPB Small-Dollar Lending Rule (3/18/19)
    In a comment letter filed today, ABA urged the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to extend the compliance date for all provisions in the CFPB's final rule governing short-term, small-dollar loans. The extension would give the bureau time to revise the rule to exclude traditional consumer loans offered by banks — such as "bridge" loans, demand lines of credit, and loans secured by securities — which the rule would regulate if not modified. Finalized in October 2017, the rule imposes an ability-to-pay test, payment withdrawal restrictions, and notice requirements on a wide swath of short-term loans, including payday loans, auto title loans, deposit advances and longer-term loans with balloon payments. The bureau has proposed to rescind the rule's underwriting provisions and to extend the Aug. 19, 2019, compliance date for those provisions. For additional information, contact Jonathan Thessin​.
  • Fed's Brainard Discusses Potential Changes to CRA Assessment Area Definition (3/15/19)
    As financial regulators continue their review of the Community Reinvestment Act regulations, Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard said that they are considering making adjustments to the assessment area definition that would allow banks to receive CRA consideration for community development activities in a more expansive area. Brainard added that this approach "would help eliminate uncertainty and could encourage more capital for affordable housing, community facilities, and economic development activities in underserved areas."
  • ABA, Trade Groups Call for National Beneficial Ownership Registry (3/15/19)
    As the House Financial Services Committee held a hearing on financial crimes, ABA joined eight other financial trade organizations in a letter to committee leaders highlighting the need for a national beneficial ownership registry. While banks are required to collect the beneficial ownership information of their customers, the groups noted that the lack of a single, centralized federal registry that could be used to verify that information "represents a significant gap in the U.S. regulatory system that allows criminals, money launderers, kleptocrats and terrorist financiers to obscure their identities from law enforcement."
  • ABA Updates Enforcement Action Database (3/8/19)
    ABA recently updated the enforcement database to include five enforcement actions. The FDIC and OCC both issued two enforcement actions this month. Two of the enforcement actions, one from the FDIC and one from the OCC, were for BSA violations and deficiencies. The FDIC also assessed a civil money penalty for $2,700 against a bank for flood violations. In its second enforcement action this month, the OCC issued a cease and desist order to a bank due to unsafe and unsound practices relating to its compliance management systems. Lastly, in an agreement with the DOJ, a company agreed to pay $750,000 to six service members to resolve its alleged violations of the Servicemember Civil Relief Act. Contact Teshale Smith​ with questions. ​
  • CFPB Seeks Public Comment on PACE Loans (3/7/19)
    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau requested public feedback on Property Assessed Clean Energy loans, a controversial type of financing that allows homeowners to pay for energy-efficient retrofitting — such as solar panels and high-efficiency air conditioners — through their property tax assessments, and which often take lien priority over the first mortgage lien. S. 2155, the regulatory reform law enacted last year, requires the CFPB to apply the Truth in Lending Act’s ability-to-repay requirements and civil liability provisions to PACE loans. The American Bankers Association has long raised concerns about these loans over their lack of full consumer protections and supported efforts to enhance that protection. ​
  • FFIEC Issue Policy Statement on Examination Reports (3/7/19)
    As part of its ongoing exam modernization initiative, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) issued a policy statement aimed at promoting clarity and consistency of examination reports. The policy statement—which is intended to reduce regulatory burden for community banks—includes principles that "set forth minimum expectations of what should be included in all reports of examination." The principles establish that all report of examinations should present conclusions and issues in order of importance; document the condition and risk profile of the institution; discuss the adequacy of the institution’s risk management practices; and document issues of supervisory concern or warranting prompt corrective action.
  • ABA Opposes CFPB's Premature Debt Collection Data Survey (3/5/19)
    In a letter to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, ABA objected to the bureau’s request to the Office of Management and Budget to conduct a debt collection survey, citing the need for the CFPB to solicit public feedback before moving forward. The CFPB’s survey, which attempts to measure consumer understanding of model debt validation notices and model debt collection disclosures, has not been subjected to broad public comment as required under the Paperwork Reduction Act, ABA pointed out. The association added that consumer testing should only move forward once the CFPB has heard from all interested parties via a notice and comment process. For more information, contact ABA's Diana Banks.
  • FFIEC Releases 2019 CRA Data Entry Software, 2019 Edits, and 2019 File Specifications (3/5/19)
    The FFIEC released edits and file specifications for the 2019 CRA filings. The Federal Reserve System, on behalf of the FFIEC designed the CRA Data Entry Software (DES) to assist respondents in automating the filing of their CRA data. The free software includes editing features to help verify and analyze the accuracy of the data. The data file created using this software can be submitted by one of the available submission methods listed in the software. For more information on using the FFIEC's CRA DES, refer to DES frequently asked questions​. See ABA's CRA page  for more information. ​
  • CFPB Unveils Electronic Platform for Prepaid Account Agreement Submissions (3/1/19)
    Ahead of the effective date of its prepaid rule, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau unveiled a new electronic submission system — Collect — that prepaid account issuers may use to submit their account agreements to the bureau. The CFPB also released several related compliance materials including a user guide, quick reference guide, FAQs and a recorded webinar. All prepaid account agreements that are offered as of April 1, 2019, must be submitted to the CFPB by May 1, 2019; after that date, issuers must notify the bureau when a new agreement is offered, a previously submitted agreement is amended or a previously submitted agreement is no longer offered.

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February News

  • FDIC Updates Prepaid Accounts Exam Procedures (2/25/19)
    The FDIC issued updated exam procedures to reflect the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's 2016 Prepaid Accounts Final Rule and all subsequent updates to Regulation E and Regulation Z. FDIC examiners will use the updated interagency examination procedures to evaluate financial institutions' compliance with amended Regulation E and Regulation Z for prepaid accounts, effective April 1, 2019. Contact Nessa Feddis​ with questions.
  • ABA Issues Analysis of new Final Rule on Private Flood Insurance (2/19/19)
    ABA has prepared a members-only staff analysis on the private flood insurance regulations released by the Federal Reserve, OCC, FDIC, NCUA, and Farm Credit Administration. The rule, which will be effective on July 1, 2019, is the long-awaited implementation of the 2012 Biggert Waters Act provision that requires federally regulated lending institutions to accept private flood insurance policies that meet certain statutory criteria. The six-page staff analysis summarizes and analyzes the provisions of the final rule, including the definition of private flood insurance, the Compliance Aid, mandatory and discretionary acceptance, and acceptance of policies issued by mutual aid societies. For more information, or to join ABA’s Flood Compliance working group, contact ABA's Diana Banks.
  • Financial Trade Groups Ask Supreme Court for Stable, Uniform TCPA Rules​ (2/14/19)
    The ABA, along with the Consumer Bankers Association and the Independent Community Bankers of America, filed a friend-of-the court brief asking the Supreme Court to provide stability and uniformity to the Federal Communications Commission’s rules interpreting the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. The associations urged the Supreme Court to require district courts to follow the FCC’s interpretations, which would give banks greater certainty that their nationwide compliance programs will not be upended by a decision from a single federal district court. For more information, contact ABA's Jonathan Thessin​.
  • ABA, Groups Welcome CFPB ‘Sandbox’ Proposal (2/11/19)
    In a letter to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, ABA and three other trades offered support for the Bureau’s proposed changes to its 2016 No-action Letter policy (NAL) and its proposal to establish a “sandbox” to enable banks and financial technology companies to test new products, services and delivery mechanisms. We recommended that the Bureau: strengthen liability protections for companies that comply in good faith with the terms of a NAL or Sandbox approval; coordinate proactively with other regulators; ensure the confidentiality of data and information; and commit to amending relevant regulations when program experience demonstrates it is warranted. For more information, contact ABA’s Virginia O’Neill​.
  • ABA Recommends No Changes to FTC’s Current Identity Theft Rules (2/11/19)
    As the Federal Trade Commission undertakes a systematic review of all current rules and regulations, ABA on Friday offered feedback its identity theft rules. These rules require creditors and financial institutions to identify patterns, practices and activities that might indicate identity theft and to prescribe regulations requiring financial institutions and for creditors to establish reasonable policies and procedures for implementing the guidelines. They also require debit and credit card issuers to validate address changes under certain conditions. Contact Nessa Feddis​ with questions.
  • ABA Offers Feedback on Reg CC Proposal (2/7/19)
    In a letter to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Federal Reserve, ABA offered feedback on the Fed’s 2011 proposal regarding funds availability under Reg CC (Expedited Funds Availability Act) which was reopened for comment in November. The agencies simultaneously proposed a method for adjusting the regulation’s dollar amounts for inflation which is required every five years, pursuant to the Dodd-Frank Act. ABA expressed general support for the proposed calculation methodology and emphasized that the final rule should allow at least one year to implement and that the timing of any other disclosure changes should be tied to the inflation adjustments to avoid unnecessary costs and burdens.
  • CFPB Proposes to Eliminate Small-Dollar Lending Rule’s Ability-to-Repay Test (2/7/19)
    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau proposed to remove the prescriptive underwriting provisions from the small-dollar lending rule it issued in October 2017. The rule imposes an ability-to-pay test on a wide swath of small-dollar loans of 45 days or less, including payday loans, auto title loans and bank-provided loans with balloon payments. The CFPB also proposed to extend the compliance date for the rule’s underwriting provisions by 15 months to Nov. 19, 2020. For more information, contact ABA's Jonathan Thessin​.
  • ABA Supports Proposed Residential Real Estate Appraisal Threshold Increase (2/6/19)
    ABA offered support for a recent proposal by the financial regulatory agencies to raise the appraisal threshold for residential real estate transactions from $250,000 to $400,000. Under the proposal, transactions that qualify for the exemption would still need to obtain an evaluation consistent with safe and sound banking practices. The evaluation would provide an estimate of the market value of the property, but would not be required to be prepared by a state licensed or certified appraiser, and would be less detailed and costly than an appraisal. For more information, contact ABA's Sharon Whitaker​.
  • Agencies Issue Advisory on Education Loan Rehabilitation Programs​ (2/5/19)
    The Federal Reserve and FDIC issued an advisory on voluntary private education loan rehabilitation programs to alert banks to an amendment to the Fair Credit Reporting Act that was included in the S. 2155 regulatory reform law. Under the law, consumers may request that a financial institution remove a reported default regarding a private education loan under certain conditions. The law only applies to banks that have established loan rehabilitation programs. Those banks, provided they meet the statutory requirements, become entitled to a safe harbor from potential claims under the FCRA of inaccurate reporting for removing a reported default from a consumer’s credit report. Contact Nessa Feddis​ with questions.
  • FinCEN Alerts Banks to Suspected 314(b) Phishing Attempts (2/1/19)
    FinCEN is currently investigating reports of phishing attempts using its 314(b) information sharing system. While it does not appear that FinCEN’s system has been compromised or hacked, banks that participate in the 314(b) information sharing program are encouraged to check FinCEN’s Secure Information Sharing System (SISS) for additional information. For questions, contact ABA’s Rob Rowe​.

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