Semiannual Regulatory Agenda, 16994-16998 [2021-04346]

Download as PDF 16994 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 60 / Wednesday, March 31, 2021 / UA: Reg Flex Agenda BUREAU OF CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION 12 CFR Ch. X Semiannual Regulatory Agenda Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection. ACTION: Semiannual regulatory agenda. AGENCY: The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (Bureau) is publishing this agenda as part of the Fall 2020 Unified Agenda of Federal Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions. The Bureau reasonably anticipates having the regulatory matters identified below under consideration during the period from November 2020 to November 2021. The next agenda will be published in spring 2021 and will update this agenda through spring 2022. Publication of this agenda is in accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.). DATES: This information is current as of September 11, 2020. ADDRESSES: Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, 1700 G Street NW, Washington, DC 20552. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: A staff contact is included for each regulatory item listed herein. If you require this document in an alternative electronic format, please contact CFPB_ Accessibility@cfpb.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Bureau is publishing its fall 2020 Agenda as part of the Fall 2020 Unified Agenda of Federal Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions, which is coordinated by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Order 12866. The agenda lists the regulatory matters that the Bureau reasonably anticipates having under consideration during the period from November 2020 to November 2021, as described further below.1 The complete Unified Agenda is available to the public at the following website: http:// www.reginfo.gov. Pursuant to the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, Public Law 111–203, 124 Stat. 1376 (Dodd-Frank Act), the Bureau has rulemaking, supervisory, enforcement, consumer education, and other authorities relating to consumer financial products and services. These authorities include the authority to issue regulations under more than a dozen Federal consumer financial laws, jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS22 SUMMARY: 1 The listing does not include certain routine, frequent, or administrative matters. The Bureau is reporting information for this Unified Agenda in a manner consistent with past practice. VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:31 Mar 30, 2021 Jkt 253001 which transferred to the Bureau from seven Federal agencies on July 21, 2011. The Bureau’s general purpose, as specified in section 1021(a) of the DoddFrank Act, is to implement and enforce Federal consumer financial law consistently for the purpose of ensuring that all consumers have access to markets for consumer financial products and services and that markets for consumer financial products and services are fair, transparent, and competitive. In addition, section 1021 of the DoddFrank Act specifies the objectives of the Bureau, including ensuring that, with respect to consumer financial products and services, consumers are provided with timely and understandable information to make responsible decisions about financial transactions; consumers are protected from unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts and practices and from discrimination; outdated, unnecessary, or unduly burdensome regulations are regularly identified and addressed in order to reduce unwarranted regulatory burdens; that Federal consumer financial law is enforced consistently, without regard to the status of a person as a depository institution, in order to promote fair competition; and markets for consumer financial products and services operate transparently and efficiently to facilitate access and innovation. As a general matter, the Bureau believes that it can best achieve these statutory purposes and objectives by using its various tools to focus on the prevention of consumer harm. With specific regard to rulemaking, the Bureau seeks to articulate clear rules of the road for regulated entities that promote compliance with the law, foster competition, increase transparency, and preserve fair markets for financial products and services. If Congress directs the Bureau to promulgate rules or address specific issues through rulemaking, the Bureau will comply with the law. If the Bureau has discretion, the Bureau will focus on preventing consumer harm by maximizing informed consumer choice, and by reducing unwarranted regulatory burden which can adversely affect competition and consumers’ access to financial products and services. Consistent with these priorities and to enhance transparency, the Unified Agenda identifies the rulemaking activities in which the Bureau is likely to be engaged over the next 12 months and those that are contemplated in the ensuing year. PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4701 Sfmt 4702 Rulemaking To Implement EGRRCPA The Bureau is conducting the two remaining rulemakings mandated in the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act of 2018, Public Law 115–174, 132 Stat. 1297 (EGRRCPA). As part of these rulemakings, the Bureau is working to maximize consumer welfare and achieve other statutory objectives through protecting consumers from harm and minimizing regulatory burden, including facilitating industry compliance with rules. First, section 307 of the EGRRCPA amends the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) to mandate that the Bureau prescribe certain regulations relating to ‘‘Property Assessed Clean Energy’’ (PACE) financing. As defined by EGRRCPA section 307, PACE financing results in a tax assessment on a consumer’s real property and covers the costs of home improvements. The required regulations must carry out the purposes of TILA’s ability-to-repay (ATR) requirements, currently in place for residential mortgage loans, with respect to PACE financing, and apply TILA’s general civil liability provision for violations of the ATR requirements the Bureau will prescribe for PACE financing. The regulations must ‘‘account for the unique nature’’ of PACE financing. Section 307 of the EGRRCPA also specifically authorizes the collection of data and information necessary to support a PACE rulemaking. In March 2019 the Bureau issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) and is continuing to engage with stakeholders and collect information for the rulemaking, including by pursuing quantitative data on the effect of PACE on consumers’ financial outcomes. Second, section 108 of the EGRRCPA directs the Bureau to conduct a rulemaking to exempt from the escrow requirement loans made by certain creditors with assets of $10 billion or less and meeting other criteria, adding to a 2013 rule issued by the Bureau under the Dodd-Frank Act that created an exemption for creditors with under $2 billion in assets and meeting other criteria. In anticipation of future rulemaking activity, the Bureau conducted, and in late summer 2019 released, a preliminary analysis of the number of lenders potentially impacted by implementation of the new exemption in section 108 of EGRRCPA. This analysis showed that a limited number of additional lenders would be exempt under section 108 of EGRRCPA once implemented by rule. The Bureau issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking E:\FR\FM\31MRP22.SGM 31MRP22 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 60 / Wednesday, March 31, 2021 / UA: Reg Flex Agenda (NPRM) in July 2020 and expects to issue a final rule in early 2021. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS22 Rulemakings To Implement the DoddFrank Act and Other Statutes 1. Continuation of Other Rulemakings The Bureau is continuing certain other rulemakings described in its Spring 2020 Agenda to articulate clear rules of the road for regulated entities that promote compliance with the law, foster competition, increase transparency, and preserve fair markets for financial products and services. Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act amended the Equal Credit Opportunity Act to require, subject to rules prescribed by the Bureau, financial institutions to collect, report, and make public certain information concerning credit applications made by womenowned, minority-owned, and small businesses. The Bureau hosted a symposium on small business data collection in November 2019 to facilitate its decisionmaking. In addition, in July 2020, the Bureau released a survey of lenders to obtain estimates of one-time costs lenders of varying sizes would incur to collect and report data pursuant to section 1071. In September 2020, the Bureau released an outline of proposals under consideration and alternatives considered in advance of convening a panel under the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA), in conjunction with the Office of Management and Budget and the Small Business Administration’s Chief Counsel for Advocacy, to obtain feedback from representatives of small businesses on the likely impacts the rules the Bureau is considering proposing to implement section 1071 would have on small entities. The Bureau expects to convene a SBREFA panel in October 2020 and consistent with the Bureau’s statutory obligations under SBREFA, will complete the panel report within 60 days of the panel’s convening. In addition, to consider concerns about possible unwarranted regulatory burden, the Bureau also issued an ANPRM in May 2019 concerning certain data points that are reported under the 2015 Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) rule and coverage of certain business or commercial purpose loans. The Bureau expects to issue an NPRM in early 2021 to follow up on the ANPRM. The Bureau also expects to issue an NPRM in early 2021 addressing the public disclosure of HMDA data in light of consumer privacy interests, so that stakeholders can concurrently consider and comment on the collection VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:31 Mar 30, 2021 Jkt 253001 and reporting of data points and public disclosure of those data points. This NPRM will follow up on the Bureau’s 2018 final policy guidance regarding disclosure of the HMDA data. Until the Bureau promulgates a final rule, it anticipates that it will continue to disclose HMDA data in the manner detailed in the 2018 final policy guidance. The Bureau also issued an NPRM in May 2019 that would prescribe rules under Regulation F to govern the activities of debt collectors, as that term is defined under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. The Bureau’s proposal would, among other things, address communications in connection with debt collection; interpret and apply prohibitions on harassment or abuse, false or misleading representations, and unfair practices in debt collection; and clarify requirements for certain consumer-facing debt collection disclosures. The proposal builds on the Bureau’s research and pre-rulemaking activities regarding the debt collection market; the conduct of debt collectors remains a top source of complaints to the Bureau. The Bureau expects to issue a final rule in October 2020 with regard to the May 2019 NPRM. The Bureau has also engaged in testing of time-barred debt disclosures that were not the focus of the May 2019 proposal. In early 2020, after completing the testing, the Bureau published a supplemental NPRM related to time-barred debt disclosures. The Bureau expects to issue a final rule in December 2020 addressing disclosures related to the validation notice and time-barred debt. In July 2019, the Bureau issued an ANPRM to solicit information about possible amendments to the qualified mortgage provisions of Regulation Z, which implement provisions of TILA. With certain exceptions, Regulation Z requires creditors to make a reasonable, good faith determination of a consumer’s ability to repay any residential mortgage loan, and loans that meet Regulation Z’s requirements for ‘‘qualified mortgages’’ obtain certain protections from liability. One category of qualified mortgages (QMs) covers certain loans that are eligible for purchase or guarantee by either the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) or the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac). Under Regulation Z, this category of QMs (Temporary GSE QM or ‘‘Patch’’ loans) is scheduled to expire no later than January 10, 2021. In June, the Bureau proposed amendments to the definition of General QM that would move away from the 43 percent Debt-toIncome (DTI) requirement and instead PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4701 Sfmt 4702 16995 establish an alternative, such as a pricing threshold (i.e., the difference between the loan’s annual percentage rate (APR) and the average prime offer rate (APOR) for a comparable transaction) for loans to qualify as QMs. General QM loans would still have to meet the statutory criteria for QM status, including restrictions related to loan features, up-front costs, and underwriting. The Bureau also proposed in June 2020 to extend the Patch for a short period until the effective date of the proposed alternative or until one or more of the GSEs exits conservatorship, whichever comes first. This would help ensure a smooth and orderly transition away from the Patch by (among other things) allowing the Bureau to complete this rulemaking and to avoid any gap between the expiration of the Patch and the effective date of the proposed alternative. Finally, in August 2020 the Bureau proposed a new ‘‘seasoning’’ definition of QM. This definition would create an alternative pathway to QM safe-harbor status for certain mortgages when the borrower has consistently made timely payments for a period. The Bureau expects to take final action on each of these proposals later this year. The Bureau is participating in interagency rulemaking processes with the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the National Credit Union Administration, and the Federal Housing Finance Agency to develop regulations to implement the amendments made by the Dodd-Frank Act to the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA) concerning appraisals. The FIRREA amendments require implementing regulations for quality control standards for automated valuation models (AVMs). These standards are designed to ensure a high level of confidence in the estimates produced by the valuation models, protect against the manipulation of data, seek to avoid conflicts of interest, require random sample testing and reviews, and account for any other such factor that the Agencies determine to be appropriate. The Agencies will continue to work to develop a proposed rule to implement the Dodd-Frank Act’s AVM amendments to FIRREA. The Bureau is continuing a rulemaking to address the anticipated expiration of the LIBOR index, which the UK Financial Conduct Authority has stated that it cannot guarantee the publication of beyond the end of 2021. The Bureau’s work is designed to facilitate compliance by open-end and E:\FR\FM\31MRP22.SGM 31MRP22 16996 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 60 / Wednesday, March 31, 2021 / UA: Reg Flex Agenda jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS22 closed-end creditors and to lessen the financial impact to consumers by providing examples of replacement indices that meet Regulation Z requirements. For creditors for home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) (including reverse mortgages) and card issuers for credit card accounts, the rule would facilitate the transition of existing accounts to an alternative index, beginning around March 2021, well in advance of LIBOR’s anticipated expiration. The rule also would address change-in-terms notice provisions for HELOCs and credit card accounts and how they apply to the transition away from LIBOR, to ensure that consumers are informed of the replacement index and any adjusted margin. To facilitate compliance by card issuers, the rule would address how the rate reevaluation provisions applicable to credit card accounts apply to the transition from LIBOR to a replacement index. This rulemaking will enable the Bureau to facilitate compliance by creditors with Regulation Z as they transition away from LIBOR. The Bureau issued an NPRM in June 2020 and expects to issue a final rule in January 2021. New Projects and Planning for Future Rulemakings The Bureau anticipates issuing an NPRM in spring 2021 to consider possible amendments to the Bureau’s mortgage servicing rules to address actions required of servicers working with borrowers affected by natural disasters or other emergencies. In January 2013, the Bureau issued final mortgage servicing rules, pursuant to Regulations X and Z, implementing numerous provisions of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) and TILA, as amended by title XIV of the Dodd-Frank Act. The Bureau has since made various corrections, clarifications, and other amendments to the January 2013 rules. In June 2020, the Bureau issued an Interim Final Rule (IFR) amending aspects of the mortgage servicing rules to address the exigencies of COVID–19. Comments received on the IFR and information gathered through the Bureau’s market monitoring suggest that the rules may need additional updates to address natural disasters or other emergencies. Section 1033 of the Dodd-Frank Act provides that, subject to rules prescribed by the Bureau, covered persons shall make available to consumers, upon request, transaction data and other information concerning a consumer financial product or service that the consumer obtains from a covered person. Section 1033 also states that the VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:31 Mar 30, 2021 Jkt 253001 Bureau shall prescribe by rule standards to promote the development and use of standardized formats for information made available to consumers. In November 2016, the Bureau issued a Request for Information seeking comment from the public to better understand the consumer benefits and risks associated with market developments that rely on access to consumer financial account and account-related information. In October 2017, the Bureau issued Consumer Protection Principles for ConsumerAuthorized Financial Data Sharing and Aggregation to express the Bureau’s vision for the data aggregation market. The Bureau hosted a symposium on consumer authorized financial data sharing in February 2020. In fall 2020, the Bureau expects to issue an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking concerning consumer data access to implement section 1033 of the DoddFrank Act. The Bureau has decided to add two new items to its long-term regulatory agenda. This portion of the agenda focuses on potential regulatory actions that an agency may engage in beyond the current fiscal year. First, the Bureau is adding an entry related to its TILA/ RESPA Integrated Disclosures (TRID) rule. The Dodd-Frank Act directed the Bureau to integrate the mortgage disclosures required under TILA and RESPA. In November 2013, the Bureau issued a final rule to implement this requirement (the TILA/RESPA Integrated Disclosure or TRID rule). The Bureau amended the 2013 final rule on two occasions before its effective date, and the amended rule took effect on October 3, 2015. The Bureau subsequently amended the 2013 final rule in July 2017 and April 2018. The July 2017 Amendments took effect on October 10, 2017, and the April 2018 Amendments took effect on June 1, 2018. As noted below, in October 2020 the Bureau will publish a report of its assessment of the TRID rule, as amended when the rule took effect in October 2015, as required by section 1022(d) of the Dodd-Frank Act. The Bureau has received feedback—in response to a November 2019 Request for Information in connection with the TRID rule assessment, the Bureau’s 2018 Calls for Evidence, and other Bureau outreach—suggesting that modifications of aspects of the TRID rule may make the rule more effective. As the Bureau continues to monitor market developments, the Bureau will evaluate possible policy responses to issues identified, including potential rulemaking, guidance, or other PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4701 Sfmt 4702 activities. Possible topics for consideration will be determined based on the findings in the Bureau’s assessment report as well as other input the Bureau receives on the TRID rule. Second, the Bureau has commenced research that focuses on providing information to consumers about the costs associated with payday loans. The goal of this research is to identify possible ways the Bureau may be able to improve consumer understanding and aid consumer decisionmaking around payday loans through rulemaking or other actions. The first phase of this research involves qualitative testing, which the Bureau anticipates completing by the end of September 2021. The results of the qualitative testing will inform the Bureau in deciding whether and how to move forward with quantitative testing that might support possible future rulemaking or other actions related to payday loan disclosures. The Bureau is also actively reviewing existing regulations. Section 1022(d) of the Dodd-Frank Act requires the Bureau to conduct an assessment of each significant rule or order adopted by the Bureau under Federal consumer financial law and publish a report of each assessment not later than 5 years after the effective date of the subject matter or order. The Bureau expects to complete an assessment of its TRID rule and certain amendments in October 2020. The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) also requires the Bureau to consider the effect on small entities of certain rules it promulgates. The Bureau published in May 2019 its plan for conducting reviews, consistent with section 610 of the RFA, of certain regulations which are believed to have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. Congress specified that the purpose of such reviews shall be to determine whether such rules should be continued without change, or should be amended or rescinded, consistent with the stated objectives of the applicable statutes, to minimize any significant economic impact of the rules upon a substantial number of such small entities. In August 2020 the Bureau commenced its review pursuant to section 610 of the RFA of Regulation Z rules that implement the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009. Specifically, the Bureau will review an interim final rule and three final rules published by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Board) from July 2009 to April 2011. Finally, as required by the DoddFrank Act, the Bureau is also continuing E:\FR\FM\31MRP22.SGM 31MRP22 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 60 / Wednesday, March 31, 2021 / UA: Reg Flex Agenda to monitor markets for consumer financial products and services to identify risks to consumers and the proper functioning of such markets. As discussed in a recent report by the Government Accountability Office, the Bureau’s Division of Research, Markets, and Regulations and specifically its Markets Offices continuously monitor market developments and risks to consumers. The Bureau also has created a number of cross-Bureau working 16997 groups focused around specific markets which advance the Bureau’s market monitoring work. The Bureau’s market monitoring work assists in identifying issues for potential future rulemaking work. CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION BUREAU—PRERULE STAGE Regulation Identifier No. Sequence No. Title 408 .................... Business Lending Data (Regulation B) ............................................................................................................ 3170–AA09 CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION BUREAU—FINAL RULE STAGE Title 409 .................... Debt Collection Rule ........................................................................................................................................ CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION BUREAU (CFPB) Prerule Stage 408. Business Lending Data (Regulation B) jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS22 Regulation Identifier No. Sequence No. E.O. 13771 Designation: Independent agency. Legal Authority: 15 U.S.C. 1691c–2 Abstract: Section 1071 of the DoddFrank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank Act) amended the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) to require, subject to rules prescribed by the Bureau, financial institutions to report information concerning credit applications made by women-owned, minority-owned, and small businesses. The amendments to ECOA made by the Dodd-Frank Act require that certain data be collected, maintained, and reported, including the number of the application and date the application was received; the type and purpose of the loan or credit applied for; the amount of credit applied for and approved; the type of action taken with regard to each application and the date of such action; the census tract of the principal place of business; the gross annual revenue of the business; and the race, sex, and ethnicity of the principal owners of the business. The Dodd-Frank Act also provides authority for the Bureau to require any additional data that the Bureau determines would aid in fulfilling the purposes of this section. The Bureau may adopt exceptions to any requirement of section 1071 and may exempt any financial institution from its requirements, as the Bureau deems necessary or appropriate to carry out section 1071’s purposes. The Bureau issued a Request for Information in 2017 seeking public comment on, among other things, the types of credit products VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:31 Mar 30, 2021 Jkt 253001 offered and the types of data currently collected by lenders in this market, and the potential complexity, cost of, and privacy issues related to, small business data collection. In November 2019, the Bureau hosted a symposium on small business data collection to facilitate its decision-making. The symposium explored how to efficiently collect appropriate data without imposing unnecessary or undue costs that could limit access to credit from existing market participants or discourage new entrants into the market for small business credit. The information received in response to the Request for Information and the symposium will help the Bureau as it determines how to implement the statute efficiently while minimizing burdens on lenders. In addition, in July 2020, the Bureau released a survey of lenders to obtain estimates of one-time costs lenders of varying sizes would incur to collect and report data pursuant to section 1071. In September 2020, the Bureau released an outline of proposals under consideration and alternatives considered in advance of convening a panel under the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA), in conjunction with the Office of Management and Budget and the Small Business Administration’s Chief Counsel for Advocacy. Through this SBREFA process, the Bureau will obtain feedback from representatives of small businesses on the likely impacts the rules the Bureau is considering to implement section 1071 would have on small entities. The Bureau convened a SBREFA panel in October 2020 and consistent with the Bureau’s statutory obligations under SBREFA, will complete the panel report within 60 days of the panel’s convening. Timetable: PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4701 Sfmt 4702 Action Request for Information. Request for Information Comment Period End. Pre-rule Activity— SBREFA Outline. Pre-rule Activity— SBREFA Report. Date 05/15/17 3170–AA41 FR Cite 82 FR 22318 09/14/17 09/15/20 12/00/20 Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Yes. Agency Contact: Kristine Andreassen, Office of Regulations, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Washington, DC 20552, Phone: 202 435– 7700. RIN: 3170–AA09 CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION BUREAU (CFPB) Final Rule Stage 409. Debt Collection Rule E.O. 13771 Designation: Independent agency. Legal Authority: 15 U.S.C. 1692l(d) Abstract: In May 2019, the Bureau issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), which would prescribe rules under Regulation F to govern the activities of debt collectors, as that term is defined under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). The Bureau’s proposal would, among other things, address communications in connection with debt collection; interpret and apply prohibitions on harassment or abuse, false or misleading representations, and unfair practices in debt collection; and clarify requirements E:\FR\FM\31MRP22.SGM 31MRP22 16998 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 60 / Wednesday, March 31, 2021 / UA: Reg Flex Agenda jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS22 for certain consumer-facing debt collection disclosures. The proposal builds on the Bureau’s research and prerulemaking activities regarding the debt collection market, including convening a panel in August 2016 under the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) in conjunction with the Office of Management and Budget and the Small Business Administration’s Chief Counsel for Advocacy. The conduct of debt collectors remains a top source of complaints to the Bureau. The Bureau expects to issue a final rule in October 2020 with regard to the May 2019 NPRM. The Bureau has also engaged in testing of time-barred debt disclosures that were not addressed in the May 2019 proposed rule. In early 2020, after completing the testing, the Bureau issued a supplemental NPRM related to time-barred debt disclosures. The Bureau expects to issue a final rule in December 2020 addressing disclosures VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:31 Mar 30, 2021 Jkt 253001 related to the validation notice and time-barred debt. Timetable: Action Date ANPRM ............... ANPRM Comment Period Extended. ANPRM Comment Period End. ANPRM Comment Period Extended End. Pre-Rule Activity—SBREFA Outline. NPRM .................. NPRM Comment Period Extended. NPRM Comment Period End. NPRM Comment Period Extended End. PO 00000 Frm 00006 11/12/13 01/14/14 FR Cite 78 FR 67847 79 FR 2384 02/10/14 02/28/14 07/28/16 05/21/19 08/02/19 08/19/19 09/18/19 Fmt 4701 84 FR 23274 84 FR 37806 Action Supplemental NPRM. Supplemental NPRM Comment Period Extended. Supplemental NPRM Comment Period Extended End. Final Rule 1 ......... Final Rule 2—Disclosures. Date FR Cite 03/03/20 85 FR 12672 03/27/20 85 FR 17299 08/04/20 11/00/20 12/00/20 Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Yes. Agency Contact: Kristin McPartland, Office of Regulations, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Washington, DC 20552, Phone: 202 435– 7700. RIN: 3170–AA41 [FR Doc. 2021–04346 Filed 3–30–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4810–AM–P Sfmt 9990 E:\FR\FM\31MRP22.SGM 31MRP22

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 60 (Wednesday, March 31, 2021)]
[Unknown Section]
[Pages 16994-16998]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-04346]



[[Page 16993]]

Vol. 86

Wednesday,

No. 60

March 31, 2021

Part XXII





Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection





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Semiannual Regulatory Agenda

Federal Register / Vol. 86 , No. 60 / Wednesday, March 31, 2021 / UA: 
Reg Flex Agenda

[[Page 16994]]


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BUREAU OF CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION

12 CFR Ch. X


Semiannual Regulatory Agenda

AGENCY: Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection.

ACTION: Semiannual regulatory agenda.

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SUMMARY: The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (Bureau) is 
publishing this agenda as part of the Fall 2020 Unified Agenda of 
Federal Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions. The Bureau reasonably 
anticipates having the regulatory matters identified below under 
consideration during the period from November 2020 to November 2021. 
The next agenda will be published in spring 2021 and will update this 
agenda through spring 2022. Publication of this agenda is in accordance 
with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.).

DATES: This information is current as of September 11, 2020.

ADDRESSES:  Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, 1700 G Street NW, 
Washington, DC 20552.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: A staff contact is included for each 
regulatory item listed herein. If you require this document in an 
alternative electronic format, please contact 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Bureau is publishing its fall 2020 
Agenda as part of the Fall 2020 Unified Agenda of Federal Regulatory 
and Deregulatory Actions, which is coordinated by the Office of 
Management and Budget under Executive Order 12866. The agenda lists the 
regulatory matters that the Bureau reasonably anticipates having under 
consideration during the period from November 2020 to November 2021, as 
described further below.\1\ The complete Unified Agenda is available to 
the public at the following website: http://www.reginfo.gov.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ The listing does not include certain routine, frequent, or 
administrative matters. The Bureau is reporting information for this 
Unified Agenda in a manner consistent with past practice.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Pursuant to the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer 
Protection Act, Public Law 111-203, 124 Stat. 1376 (Dodd-Frank Act), 
the Bureau has rulemaking, supervisory, enforcement, consumer 
education, and other authorities relating to consumer financial 
products and services. These authorities include the authority to issue 
regulations under more than a dozen Federal consumer financial laws, 
which transferred to the Bureau from seven Federal agencies on July 21, 
2011. The Bureau's general purpose, as specified in section 1021(a) of 
the Dodd-Frank Act, is to implement and enforce Federal consumer 
financial law consistently for the purpose of ensuring that all 
consumers have access to markets for consumer financial products and 
services and that markets for consumer financial products and services 
are fair, transparent, and competitive.
    In addition, section 1021 of the Dodd-Frank Act specifies the 
objectives of the Bureau, including ensuring that, with respect to 
consumer financial products and services, consumers are provided with 
timely and understandable information to make responsible decisions 
about financial transactions; consumers are protected from unfair, 
deceptive, or abusive acts and practices and from discrimination; 
outdated, unnecessary, or unduly burdensome regulations are regularly 
identified and addressed in order to reduce unwarranted regulatory 
burdens; that Federal consumer financial law is enforced consistently, 
without regard to the status of a person as a depository institution, 
in order to promote fair competition; and markets for consumer 
financial products and services operate transparently and efficiently 
to facilitate access and innovation.
    As a general matter, the Bureau believes that it can best achieve 
these statutory purposes and objectives by using its various tools to 
focus on the prevention of consumer harm. With specific regard to 
rulemaking, the Bureau seeks to articulate clear rules of the road for 
regulated entities that promote compliance with the law, foster 
competition, increase transparency, and preserve fair markets for 
financial products and services. If Congress directs the Bureau to 
promulgate rules or address specific issues through rulemaking, the 
Bureau will comply with the law. If the Bureau has discretion, the 
Bureau will focus on preventing consumer harm by maximizing informed 
consumer choice, and by reducing unwarranted regulatory burden which 
can adversely affect competition and consumers' access to financial 
products and services. Consistent with these priorities and to enhance 
transparency, the Unified Agenda identifies the rulemaking activities 
in which the Bureau is likely to be engaged over the next 12 months and 
those that are contemplated in the ensuing year.

Rulemaking To Implement EGRRCPA

    The Bureau is conducting the two remaining rulemakings mandated in 
the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act of 
2018, Public Law 115-174, 132 Stat. 1297 (EGRRCPA). As part of these 
rulemakings, the Bureau is working to maximize consumer welfare and 
achieve other statutory objectives through protecting consumers from 
harm and minimizing regulatory burden, including facilitating industry 
compliance with rules.
    First, section 307 of the EGRRCPA amends the Truth in Lending Act 
(TILA) to mandate that the Bureau prescribe certain regulations 
relating to ``Property Assessed Clean Energy'' (PACE) financing. As 
defined by EGRRCPA section 307, PACE financing results in a tax 
assessment on a consumer's real property and covers the costs of home 
improvements. The required regulations must carry out the purposes of 
TILA's ability-to-repay (ATR) requirements, currently in place for 
residential mortgage loans, with respect to PACE financing, and apply 
TILA's general civil liability provision for violations of the ATR 
requirements the Bureau will prescribe for PACE financing. The 
regulations must ``account for the unique nature'' of PACE financing. 
Section 307 of the EGRRCPA also specifically authorizes the collection 
of data and information necessary to support a PACE rulemaking. In 
March 2019 the Bureau issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking 
(ANPRM) and is continuing to engage with stakeholders and collect 
information for the rulemaking, including by pursuing quantitative data 
on the effect of PACE on consumers' financial outcomes.
    Second, section 108 of the EGRRCPA directs the Bureau to conduct a 
rulemaking to exempt from the escrow requirement loans made by certain 
creditors with assets of $10 billion or less and meeting other 
criteria, adding to a 2013 rule issued by the Bureau under the Dodd-
Frank Act that created an exemption for creditors with under $2 billion 
in assets and meeting other criteria. In anticipation of future 
rulemaking activity, the Bureau conducted, and in late summer 2019 
released, a preliminary analysis of the number of lenders potentially 
impacted by implementation of the new exemption in section 108 of 
EGRRCPA. This analysis showed that a limited number of additional 
lenders would be exempt under section 108 of EGRRCPA once implemented 
by rule. The Bureau issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

[[Page 16995]]

(NPRM) in July 2020 and expects to issue a final rule in early 2021.

Rulemakings To Implement the Dodd-Frank Act and Other Statutes

1. Continuation of Other Rulemakings

    The Bureau is continuing certain other rulemakings described in its 
Spring 2020 Agenda to articulate clear rules of the road for regulated 
entities that promote compliance with the law, foster competition, 
increase transparency, and preserve fair markets for financial products 
and services.
    Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act amended the Equal Credit 
Opportunity Act to require, subject to rules prescribed by the Bureau, 
financial institutions to collect, report, and make public certain 
information concerning credit applications made by women-owned, 
minority-owned, and small businesses. The Bureau hosted a symposium on 
small business data collection in November 2019 to facilitate its 
decisionmaking. In addition, in July 2020, the Bureau released a survey 
of lenders to obtain estimates of one-time costs lenders of varying 
sizes would incur to collect and report data pursuant to section 1071. 
In September 2020, the Bureau released an outline of proposals under 
consideration and alternatives considered in advance of convening a 
panel under the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act 
(SBREFA), in conjunction with the Office of Management and Budget and 
the Small Business Administration's Chief Counsel for Advocacy, to 
obtain feedback from representatives of small businesses on the likely 
impacts the rules the Bureau is considering proposing to implement 
section 1071 would have on small entities. The Bureau expects to 
convene a SBREFA panel in October 2020 and consistent with the Bureau's 
statutory obligations under SBREFA, will complete the panel report 
within 60 days of the panel's convening.
    In addition, to consider concerns about possible unwarranted 
regulatory burden, the Bureau also issued an ANPRM in May 2019 
concerning certain data points that are reported under the 2015 Home 
Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) rule and coverage of certain business or 
commercial purpose loans. The Bureau expects to issue an NPRM in early 
2021 to follow up on the ANPRM. The Bureau also expects to issue an 
NPRM in early 2021 addressing the public disclosure of HMDA data in 
light of consumer privacy interests, so that stakeholders can 
concurrently consider and comment on the collection and reporting of 
data points and public disclosure of those data points. This NPRM will 
follow up on the Bureau's 2018 final policy guidance regarding 
disclosure of the HMDA data. Until the Bureau promulgates a final rule, 
it anticipates that it will continue to disclose HMDA data in the 
manner detailed in the 2018 final policy guidance.
    The Bureau also issued an NPRM in May 2019 that would prescribe 
rules under Regulation F to govern the activities of debt collectors, 
as that term is defined under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. 
The Bureau's proposal would, among other things, address communications 
in connection with debt collection; interpret and apply prohibitions on 
harassment or abuse, false or misleading representations, and unfair 
practices in debt collection; and clarify requirements for certain 
consumer-facing debt collection disclosures. The proposal builds on the 
Bureau's research and pre-rulemaking activities regarding the debt 
collection market; the conduct of debt collectors remains a top source 
of complaints to the Bureau. The Bureau expects to issue a final rule 
in October 2020 with regard to the May 2019 NPRM. The Bureau has also 
engaged in testing of time-barred debt disclosures that were not the 
focus of the May 2019 proposal. In early 2020, after completing the 
testing, the Bureau published a supplemental NPRM related to time-
barred debt disclosures. The Bureau expects to issue a final rule in 
December 2020 addressing disclosures related to the validation notice 
and time-barred debt.
    In July 2019, the Bureau issued an ANPRM to solicit information 
about possible amendments to the qualified mortgage provisions of 
Regulation Z, which implement provisions of TILA. With certain 
exceptions, Regulation Z requires creditors to make a reasonable, good 
faith determination of a consumer's ability to repay any residential 
mortgage loan, and loans that meet Regulation Z's requirements for 
``qualified mortgages'' obtain certain protections from liability. One 
category of qualified mortgages (QMs) covers certain loans that are 
eligible for purchase or guarantee by either the Federal National 
Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) or the Federal Home Loan Mortgage 
Corporation (Freddie Mac). Under Regulation Z, this category of QMs 
(Temporary GSE QM or ``Patch'' loans) is scheduled to expire no later 
than January 10, 2021. In June, the Bureau proposed amendments to the 
definition of General QM that would move away from the 43 percent Debt-
to-Income (DTI) requirement and instead establish an alternative, such 
as a pricing threshold (i.e., the difference between the loan's annual 
percentage rate (APR) and the average prime offer rate (APOR) for a 
comparable transaction) for loans to qualify as QMs. General QM loans 
would still have to meet the statutory criteria for QM status, 
including restrictions related to loan features, up-front costs, and 
underwriting. The Bureau also proposed in June 2020 to extend the Patch 
for a short period until the effective date of the proposed alternative 
or until one or more of the GSEs exits conservatorship, whichever comes 
first. This would help ensure a smooth and orderly transition away from 
the Patch by (among other things) allowing the Bureau to complete this 
rulemaking and to avoid any gap between the expiration of the Patch and 
the effective date of the proposed alternative. Finally, in August 2020 
the Bureau proposed a new ``seasoning'' definition of QM. This 
definition would create an alternative pathway to QM safe-harbor status 
for certain mortgages when the borrower has consistently made timely 
payments for a period. The Bureau expects to take final action on each 
of these proposals later this year.
    The Bureau is participating in interagency rulemaking processes 
with the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Office 
of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Federal Deposit Insurance 
Corporation, the National Credit Union Administration, and the Federal 
Housing Finance Agency to develop regulations to implement the 
amendments made by the Dodd-Frank Act to the Financial Institutions 
Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA) concerning 
appraisals. The FIRREA amendments require implementing regulations for 
quality control standards for automated valuation models (AVMs). These 
standards are designed to ensure a high level of confidence in the 
estimates produced by the valuation models, protect against the 
manipulation of data, seek to avoid conflicts of interest, require 
random sample testing and reviews, and account for any other such 
factor that the Agencies determine to be appropriate. The Agencies will 
continue to work to develop a proposed rule to implement the Dodd-Frank 
Act's AVM amendments to FIRREA.
    The Bureau is continuing a rulemaking to address the anticipated 
expiration of the LIBOR index, which the UK Financial Conduct Authority 
has stated that it cannot guarantee the publication of beyond the end 
of 2021. The Bureau's work is designed to facilitate compliance by 
open-end and

[[Page 16996]]

closed-end creditors and to lessen the financial impact to consumers by 
providing examples of replacement indices that meet Regulation Z 
requirements. For creditors for home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) 
(including reverse mortgages) and card issuers for credit card 
accounts, the rule would facilitate the transition of existing accounts 
to an alternative index, beginning around March 2021, well in advance 
of LIBOR's anticipated expiration. The rule also would address change-
in-terms notice provisions for HELOCs and credit card accounts and how 
they apply to the transition away from LIBOR, to ensure that consumers 
are informed of the replacement index and any adjusted margin. To 
facilitate compliance by card issuers, the rule would address how the 
rate re-evaluation provisions applicable to credit card accounts apply 
to the transition from LIBOR to a replacement index. This rulemaking 
will enable the Bureau to facilitate compliance by creditors with 
Regulation Z as they transition away from LIBOR. The Bureau issued an 
NPRM in June 2020 and expects to issue a final rule in January 2021.

New Projects and Planning for Future Rulemakings

    The Bureau anticipates issuing an NPRM in spring 2021 to consider 
possible amendments to the Bureau's mortgage servicing rules to address 
actions required of servicers working with borrowers affected by 
natural disasters or other emergencies. In January 2013, the Bureau 
issued final mortgage servicing rules, pursuant to Regulations X and Z, 
implementing numerous provisions of the Real Estate Settlement 
Procedures Act (RESPA) and TILA, as amended by title XIV of the Dodd-
Frank Act. The Bureau has since made various corrections, 
clarifications, and other amendments to the January 2013 rules. In June 
2020, the Bureau issued an Interim Final Rule (IFR) amending aspects of 
the mortgage servicing rules to address the exigencies of COVID-19. 
Comments received on the IFR and information gathered through the 
Bureau's market monitoring suggest that the rules may need additional 
updates to address natural disasters or other emergencies.
    Section 1033 of the Dodd-Frank Act provides that, subject to rules 
prescribed by the Bureau, covered persons shall make available to 
consumers, upon request, transaction data and other information 
concerning a consumer financial product or service that the consumer 
obtains from a covered person. Section 1033 also states that the Bureau 
shall prescribe by rule standards to promote the development and use of 
standardized formats for information made available to consumers. In 
November 2016, the Bureau issued a Request for Information seeking 
comment from the public to better understand the consumer benefits and 
risks associated with market developments that rely on access to 
consumer financial account and account-related information. In October 
2017, the Bureau issued Consumer Protection Principles for Consumer-
Authorized Financial Data Sharing and Aggregation to express the 
Bureau's vision for the data aggregation market. The Bureau hosted a 
symposium on consumer authorized financial data sharing in February 
2020. In fall 2020, the Bureau expects to issue an Advance Notice of 
Proposed Rulemaking concerning consumer data access to implement 
section 1033 of the Dodd-Frank Act.
    The Bureau has decided to add two new items to its long-term 
regulatory agenda. This portion of the agenda focuses on potential 
regulatory actions that an agency may engage in beyond the current 
fiscal year. First, the Bureau is adding an entry related to its TILA/
RESPA Integrated Disclosures (TRID) rule. The Dodd-Frank Act directed 
the Bureau to integrate the mortgage disclosures required under TILA 
and RESPA. In November 2013, the Bureau issued a final rule to 
implement this requirement (the TILA/RESPA Integrated Disclosure or 
TRID rule). The Bureau amended the 2013 final rule on two occasions 
before its effective date, and the amended rule took effect on October 
3, 2015. The Bureau subsequently amended the 2013 final rule in July 
2017 and April 2018. The July 2017 Amendments took effect on October 
10, 2017, and the April 2018 Amendments took effect on June 1, 2018. As 
noted below, in October 2020 the Bureau will publish a report of its 
assessment of the TRID rule, as amended when the rule took effect in 
October 2015, as required by section 1022(d) of the Dodd-Frank Act. The 
Bureau has received feedback--in response to a November 2019 Request 
for Information in connection with the TRID rule assessment, the 
Bureau's 2018 Calls for Evidence, and other Bureau outreach--suggesting 
that modifications of aspects of the TRID rule may make the rule more 
effective. As the Bureau continues to monitor market developments, the 
Bureau will evaluate possible policy responses to issues identified, 
including potential rulemaking, guidance, or other activities. Possible 
topics for consideration will be determined based on the findings in 
the Bureau's assessment report as well as other input the Bureau 
receives on the TRID rule.
    Second, the Bureau has commenced research that focuses on providing 
information to consumers about the costs associated with payday loans. 
The goal of this research is to identify possible ways the Bureau may 
be able to improve consumer understanding and aid consumer 
decisionmaking around payday loans through rulemaking or other actions. 
The first phase of this research involves qualitative testing, which 
the Bureau anticipates completing by the end of September 2021. The 
results of the qualitative testing will inform the Bureau in deciding 
whether and how to move forward with quantitative testing that might 
support possible future rulemaking or other actions related to payday 
loan disclosures.
    The Bureau is also actively reviewing existing regulations. Section 
1022(d) of the Dodd-Frank Act requires the Bureau to conduct an 
assessment of each significant rule or order adopted by the Bureau 
under Federal consumer financial law and publish a report of each 
assessment not later than 5 years after the effective date of the 
subject matter or order. The Bureau expects to complete an assessment 
of its TRID rule and certain amendments in October 2020.
    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) also requires the Bureau to 
consider the effect on small entities of certain rules it promulgates. 
The Bureau published in May 2019 its plan for conducting reviews, 
consistent with section 610 of the RFA, of certain regulations which 
are believed to have a significant impact on a substantial number of 
small entities. Congress specified that the purpose of such reviews 
shall be to determine whether such rules should be continued without 
change, or should be amended or rescinded, consistent with the stated 
objectives of the applicable statutes, to minimize any significant 
economic impact of the rules upon a substantial number of such small 
entities. In August 2020 the Bureau commenced its review pursuant to 
section 610 of the RFA of Regulation Z rules that implement the Credit 
Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009. 
Specifically, the Bureau will review an interim final rule and three 
final rules published by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve 
System (Board) from July 2009 to April 2011.
    Finally, as required by the Dodd-Frank Act, the Bureau is also 
continuing

[[Page 16997]]

to monitor markets for consumer financial products and services to 
identify risks to consumers and the proper functioning of such markets. 
As discussed in a recent report by the Government Accountability 
Office, the Bureau's Division of Research, Markets, and Regulations and 
specifically its Markets Offices continuously monitor market 
developments and risks to consumers. The Bureau also has created a 
number of cross-Bureau working groups focused around specific markets 
which advance the Bureau's market monitoring work. The Bureau's market 
monitoring work assists in identifying issues for potential future 
rulemaking work.

           Consumer Financial Protection Bureau--Prerule Stage
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                           Regulation
       Sequence No.                    Title             Identifier No.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
408.......................  Business Lending Data              3170-AA09
                             (Regulation B).
------------------------------------------------------------------------


         Consumer Financial Protection Bureau--Final Rule Stage
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                           Regulation
       Sequence No.                    Title             Identifier No.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
409.......................  Debt Collection Rule......         3170-AA41
------------------------------------------------------------------------

CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION BUREAU (CFPB)

Prerule Stage

408. Business Lending Data (Regulation B)

    E.O. 13771 Designation: Independent agency.
    Legal Authority: 15 U.S.C. 1691c-2
    Abstract: Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and 
Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank Act) amended the Equal Credit 
Opportunity Act (ECOA) to require, subject to rules prescribed by the 
Bureau, financial institutions to report information concerning credit 
applications made by women-owned, minority-owned, and small businesses. 
The amendments to ECOA made by the Dodd-Frank Act require that certain 
data be collected, maintained, and reported, including the number of 
the application and date the application was received; the type and 
purpose of the loan or credit applied for; the amount of credit applied 
for and approved; the type of action taken with regard to each 
application and the date of such action; the census tract of the 
principal place of business; the gross annual revenue of the business; 
and the race, sex, and ethnicity of the principal owners of the 
business. The Dodd-Frank Act also provides authority for the Bureau to 
require any additional data that the Bureau determines would aid in 
fulfilling the purposes of this section. The Bureau may adopt 
exceptions to any requirement of section 1071 and may exempt any 
financial institution from its requirements, as the Bureau deems 
necessary or appropriate to carry out section 1071's purposes. The 
Bureau issued a Request for Information in 2017 seeking public comment 
on, among other things, the types of credit products offered and the 
types of data currently collected by lenders in this market, and the 
potential complexity, cost of, and privacy issues related to, small 
business data collection. In November 2019, the Bureau hosted a 
symposium on small business data collection to facilitate its decision-
making. The symposium explored how to efficiently collect appropriate 
data without imposing unnecessary or undue costs that could limit 
access to credit from existing market participants or discourage new 
entrants into the market for small business credit. The information 
received in response to the Request for Information and the symposium 
will help the Bureau as it determines how to implement the statute 
efficiently while minimizing burdens on lenders. In addition, in July 
2020, the Bureau released a survey of lenders to obtain estimates of 
one-time costs lenders of varying sizes would incur to collect and 
report data pursuant to section 1071. In September 2020, the Bureau 
released an outline of proposals under consideration and alternatives 
considered in advance of convening a panel under the Small Business 
Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA), in conjunction with the 
Office of Management and Budget and the Small Business Administration's 
Chief Counsel for Advocacy. Through this SBREFA process, the Bureau 
will obtain feedback from representatives of small businesses on the 
likely impacts the rules the Bureau is considering to implement section 
1071 would have on small entities. The Bureau convened a SBREFA panel 
in October 2020 and consistent with the Bureau's statutory obligations 
under SBREFA, will complete the panel report within 60 days of the 
panel's convening.
    Timetable:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
               Action                    Date            FR Cite
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Request for Information.............   05/15/17  82 FR 22318
Request for Information Comment        09/14/17  .......................
 Period End.
Pre-rule Activity--SBREFA Outline...   09/15/20  .......................
Pre-rule Activity--SBREFA Report....   12/00/20  .......................
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Yes.
    Agency Contact: Kristine Andreassen, Office of Regulations, 
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Washington, DC 20552, Phone: 202 
435-7700.
    RIN: 3170-AA09

CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION BUREAU (CFPB)

Final Rule Stage

409. Debt Collection Rule

    E.O. 13771 Designation: Independent agency.
    Legal Authority: 15 U.S.C. 1692l(d)
    Abstract: In May 2019, the Bureau issued a Notice of Proposed 
Rulemaking (NPRM), which would prescribe rules under Regulation F to 
govern the activities of debt collectors, as that term is defined under 
the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). The Bureau's proposal 
would, among other things, address communications in connection with 
debt collection; interpret and apply prohibitions on harassment or 
abuse, false or misleading representations, and unfair practices in 
debt collection; and clarify requirements

[[Page 16998]]

for certain consumer-facing debt collection disclosures. The proposal 
builds on the Bureau's research and pre-rulemaking activities regarding 
the debt collection market, including convening a panel in August 2016 
under the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) 
in conjunction with the Office of Management and Budget and the Small 
Business Administration's Chief Counsel for Advocacy. The conduct of 
debt collectors remains a top source of complaints to the Bureau. The 
Bureau expects to issue a final rule in October 2020 with regard to the 
May 2019 NPRM. The Bureau has also engaged in testing of time-barred 
debt disclosures that were not addressed in the May 2019 proposed rule. 
In early 2020, after completing the testing, the Bureau issued a 
supplemental NPRM related to time-barred debt disclosures. The Bureau 
expects to issue a final rule in December 2020 addressing disclosures 
related to the validation notice and time-barred debt.
    Timetable:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
               Action                    Date            FR Cite
------------------------------------------------------------------------
ANPRM...............................   11/12/13  78 FR 67847
ANPRM Comment Period Extended.......   01/14/14  79 FR 2384
ANPRM Comment Period End............   02/10/14  .......................
ANPRM Comment Period Extended End...   02/28/14  .......................
Pre-Rule Activity--SBREFA Outline...   07/28/16  .......................
NPRM................................   05/21/19  84 FR 23274
NPRM Comment Period Extended........   08/02/19  84 FR 37806
NPRM Comment Period End.............   08/19/19  .......................
NPRM Comment Period Extended End....   09/18/19  .......................
Supplemental NPRM...................   03/03/20  85 FR 12672
Supplemental NPRM Comment Period       03/27/20  85 FR 17299
 Extended.
Supplemental NPRM Comment Period       08/04/20  .......................
 Extended End.
Final Rule 1........................   11/00/20  .......................
Final Rule 2--Disclosures...........   12/00/20  .......................
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Yes.
    Agency Contact: Kristin McPartland, Office of Regulations, Consumer 
Financial Protection Bureau, Washington, DC 20552, Phone: 202 435-7700.
    RIN: 3170-AA41

[FR Doc. 2021-04346 Filed 3-30-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4810-AM-P