The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has taken steps to protect consumers and improve industry compliance through several new proposed program changes. These changes include:
- Issuing an advisory opinion program, where parties can submit requests for a Bureau rule interpretation to better understand what may constitute a legal violation (more information to be released soon);
- Releasing draft legislation for a new whistleblower award program; and,
- Reissuing an updated Administrative Bulletin that emphasizes responsible business conduct through self-assessments, self-reporting, remediation, and cooperation, which helps the Bureau’s consumer protection work.
Notably, in an effort to encourage responsible business conduct in accordance with the Bulletin and through other relevant factors, “the Bureau intends to favorably consider such conduct, along with other relevant factors, in addressing violations of Federal consumer financial law in supervisory and enforcement matters.” Other factors the Bureau may consider when determining violations of Federal consumer financial law include: (1) the nature, extent, and severity of the violations identified and any associated consumer harm; (2) an entity’s demonstrated effectiveness and willingness to address the violations; and (3) the importance of deterrence, considering the significance and pervasiveness of the potential consumer harm.
The Bureau’s proposed actions are intended to increase transparency and improve regulatory certainty for regulated entities and other stakeholders to better protect consumers. For more information, stay tuned to www.nar.realtor.