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Volume 26 - Number 6

March 23, 2015

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Industry Asks CFPB for ‘Soft’ Enforcement Period for TRID

More than a dozen industry organizations asked the CFPB last week to implement a “restrained enforcement and liability” or “grace period” through the end of 2015 for those seeking to comply in good faith with its integrated disclosure rule after its August 1, 2015, effective date. “There are ... situations – such as what will occur if a closing cannot go forward on schedule because of occurrences outside the control of the parties – that are not addressed by the regulation which still require additional guidance,” the collection of 16 trade groups said in a joint letter to CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “We would like to use this grace period to identify pain points with stakeholders and then meet with bureau staff ...

Bureau Moves Forward on Sharing Complaint Narratives

The CFPB announced last week it is now giving consumers the chance to “opt in” and share their complaint narratives in the CFPB’s public-facing consumer complaint database. Under the new final policy statement – after a summer 2014 request for information – consumers must opt in to share their story and they may opt out at any time. Also, personal information will be removed from narratives. Further, complaint narratives have to meet certain criteria to qualify for publication. For instance, the complaint must be submitted through the CFPB website, and the complaint must not be a duplicate submission. The one substantive criterion is that the consumer must have a confirmed relationship with the financial institution. Elsewhere under the new policy, companies can ...

Small Servicer Changes Welcomed, Successor in Interest, Not So Much

The changes the CFPB wants to make to its 2013 mortgage servicing rules under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act and the Truth in Lending Act got a mixed reception from the mortgage industry. The proposed rule was issued in mid-December, and the public comment period closed last week. The proposed amendments cover nine primary topics: successors in interest, definition of delinquency, requests for information, force-placed insurance, early intervention, loss mitigation, prompt payment crediting, periodic statements, and small servicer issues. The Independent Community Bankers of America was pleased with the bureau’s proposed amendment to the small servicer definition that will permit a small servicer to service, for a fee, mortgage loans that are seller-financed transactions subject to certain limitations. ...

Credit Unions Support a One-Year Break from Filing CC Agreements

Credit unions support a CFPB proposal that would let them off the hook for one year when it comes to submitting their credit card agreements to the bureau while the agency works to develop a more streamlined and automated electronic submission system. Other requirements, including card issuers’ obligations to post currently-offered agreements on their own Web sites, would remain unaffected by the proposed rule, which was issued in February. Currently, card issuers are required to send agreements to the bureau manually through e-mail. The CFPB intends to come up with a new system through which card issuers would be able to upload agreements directly to the bureau’s database and eliminate the process of e-mail submissions. Among the supporters was the ...

CFPB Study Critical of Arbitration Suggests a Regulation in the Future

The CFPB put out a study earlier this month that concluded that arbitration agreements restrict consumers’ relief for disputes with financial service providers by limiting class actions. According to the study, very few consumers individually seek relief through arbitration or the federal courts, while millions of consumers are eligible for relief each year through class action settlements. The report also found that more than 75 percent of consumers surveyed did not know whether they were subject to an arbitration clause in their agreements with their financial service providers. Further, fewer than 7 percent of those covered by arbitration clauses realized that the clauses restricted their ability to sue in court. The CFPB said its review of case data from the ...

Settlement Agents May be Outside Looking In as Big Lenders ‘DIY’

It looks like some of the biggest mortgage lenders in the nation will be closing their loans themselves largely without closing agents, once the CFPB’s integrated disclosure rule kicks in Aug. 1, 2015, one top vendor representative revealed recently. And that might put the big banks at a competitive advantage vis-à-vis their nonbank rivals. “Because this is a paradigm shift, and because the liability is staying on the lender side – both in terms of the accuracy of the disclosure and in the timing – we’ve heard some of the bigger lenders are going to close the loans themselves instead of using settlement agents,” John Vong, CEO of ComplianceEase, told Inside the CFPB recently. “For some of the banks, they have already ...

Concerns About Fraud Dominate Money-Transfer Complaints

Six of the top 10 firms that are the targets of consumer complaints about money transfers saw such submissions drop by double digits from the third quarter of 2014 to the fourth quarter, according to the latest analysis by Inside the CFPB. Overall gripes for all 1,700 companies tracked are down 16.1 percent during that period. However, consumer criticisms are up 52.5 percent when measuring the last nine months of 2014 against the last nine months of 2013. The CFPB started to collect complaints about money transfers in 2Q13. The worst performance in that period was Citibank, which saw complaints jump 133.3 percent. Overall concerns about fraud are head-and-shoulders above any [with one exclusive data chart] ...

CFPB Identifies Exam Issues With Originations, Fair Lending, Etc.

The CFPB’s latest Supervisory Highlights report identified a number of issues observed during examinations related to mortgage origination, fair lending, consumer reporting, debt collection, and deposits. “In one or more examinations, examiners found that branch managers were loan originators and owners of related marketing services entities,” the report said. Examiners “found instances of improperly allocated expenses on branch income statements which resulted in marketing services entities receiving income based on the profitability of retail loans originated by branch managers. Consequently, branch managers, as owners of the marketing services entities, received compensation based on the terms of transactions originated by the branch managers themselves.” In these cases, bureau examiners directed that compensation to loan originators based on a term of a ...

CFPB Wants to Know How the Credit Card Market is Working

The CFPB issued a formal notice and request for information on how the credit card market is functioning and the effect credit card protections are having on both issuers and consumers. As per the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure (CARD) Act, the CFPB is required to conduct a review of the consumer credit market every two years. Among its focal points, the bureau wants to know how the terms and conditions of credit card agreements have changed since it conducted its review of the credit card market two years ago. “The bureau is looking to see how card issuers may have changed their pricing, marketing, underwriting, or other practices and whether those changes have benefited or harmed consumers,” the ...

Briefs

CFPB Updates TRID Documentation. Last week, the CFPB put out some updates to the implementation materials for its integrated disclosure rule under the Truth in Lending Act and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. The updated material lines up with the rule that was published Feb. 19, 2015, that modifies the 2013 TILA/RESPA integrated disclosure rule (TRID). This rule extends the timing requirement for revised disclosures when consumers lock a rate or extend a rate lock after the Loan Estimate is provided and permits certain language related to construction loans for transactions involving new construction on the LE. Additionally, the bureau is making non-substantive corrections, including citation and cross-reference updates and wording changes for clarification purposes, to various provisions of ...

Poll

With the recent dip in interest rates, how do you feel about loan volumes this year?

We see loan production ending 2015 flat compared to 2014.

36%

We’re optimistic that our originations will rise by 10 to 20 percent year over year.

44%

We’re really optimistic: We expect production to increase by 20 percent or better from last year.

12%

We’re not so bullish. Originations for us may actually fall.

8%

Housing Pulse