Tag Archives: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

New HMDA Tools

house.1jpgThe Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has made available a second webinar on the 2015 HMDA final rule (which in large part becomes effective Jan. 1, 2018) that discusses identifiers, as well as other data points including those related to applicants and borrowers. The webinar is pre-recorded and can be viewed on-demand on YouTube here.

In addition, the CFPB has created and made available on its website a chart to illustrate the options a financial institution has for collecting and reporting ethnicity and race information under current Regulation C, Regulation C effective Jan. 1, 2018, and the CFPB’s Official Approval Notice (issued on Sept. 23, 2016). The new one-page chart, titled “Collection and Reporting of HMDA Information about Ethnicity and Race” can be found on the CFPB HMDA implementation page here.

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Fighting Financial Elder Abuse

Stop Elder Abuse Sign

A recent Consumer Financial Protection Bureau report, “Fighting Elder Financial Exploitation Through Community Networks,” emphasizes the importance of collaboration among financial institutions, local law enforcement and adult protective services agencies to stem the multi-billion-dollar elder financial abuse problem.

The report and an associated resource guide for communities emphasized the value of including banks in these partnerships. The Resource Guide recommends that community networks engage with branch managers, compliance officers, community outreach staff and marketers at banks.

New HMDA 2018 Resources

CFPBThe Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) continues to build its library of resources to assist HMDA reporters in transitioning to the revised HMDA data collection rules that become effective starting January 1, 2018. The CFPB has made available on its website a webinar that provides an overview of the HMDA final rule and addresses institutional and transactional coverage, the data disclosure and submission process, as well as some key dates found in the final rule. In order to facilitate access to this webinar, the CFPB has also provided a method for viewing the video on YouTube.

Also available, is a HMDA transactional coverage chart that may be used when determining whether a transaction is reportable under HMDA. In addition, the CFPB has posted a PDF of the sample demographic data collection form from Appendix B of the HMDA final rule that reporters can use to collect an applicant’s race, sex, ethnicity and age.

The webinar and other implementation resources can be found on the CFPB’s dedicated implementation webpage for HMDA here. Technical questions regarding HMDA may be submitted to the CFPB via email to HMDAHelp@cfpb.gov.

TRID Construction Loan Webinar

TRID-iconThe Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) staff presented another in its series of informational webinars on the TILA/RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) rule, this time focusing on construction loans. The presentation on construction lending follows a “fact sheet” covering the same topic issued in January.

The webinar focused on issues related to disclosing construction-to-permanent loans in the Loan Estimate, whether the construction and permanent phases are disclosed in a single Loan Estimate or separate Loan Estimates. While the presenters did not take questions from the participants, they noted that they received many questions during the presentation that would be logged and that the questions asked would impact future presentations. This webinar will be added to the previous webinar recordings on the CFPB website here.

“Owning a Home” Toolkit

house.1jpgThe Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has developed a suite of online tools to help guide potential homeowners through the mortgage process. The tools developed by the CFPB are intended to help consumers:

  • Understand loan options;
  • Explore interest rates;
  • Understand and more easily compare mortgage loan offers; and,
  • Prepare for closing.

The CFPB’s “Owning a Home: The homebuyer’s trusted resource” page can be found here.

Tips for Financial Caregivers

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has published four guides to help financial caregivers, particularly those who handle the finances of older Americans, carry out their duties and responsibilities in managing someone else’s money.

Each guide explains the role of a fiduciary (a person named as an agent to manage the money and property of another person) and explains what the fiduciary can and cannot do in their role.  The guides outline the four primary responsibilities of a fiduciary:

  • To act in the best interest of the person they have been appointed to assist;
  • To manage the person’s money and property carefully;
  • To keep the money and property of the person separate from the fiduciary’s own assets; and,
  • To keep good records of transactions conducted on behalf of the person.

The guides also warn fiduciaries if they fail to meet these standards, they could be removed as a fiduciary, sued, or have to repay money. It is even possible the fiduciary could be found guilty in a court of fraud, financial elder abuse or theft and be fined, imprisoned, or both.

As indicated, the CFPB has published four separate guides reflecting the role of four different fiduciary capacities:

  • Power of Attorney – A power of attorney is a legal document in which a consumer (the “principal”) gives another person  legal authority to make decisions about his/her money or property should he/she become sick or injured.  Under a power of attorney, the person named in the fiduciary capacity is known as the “agent” or “attorney-in-fact.”  The Power of Attorney document outlines the responsibilities of the agent.  The principal has the right to revoke the Power of Attorney appointment at any time and the appointment automatically ceases upon the death of the principal.
  • Guardians or Conservators – A guardian is someone the court names to manage money, property and sometimes the health care, for an individual whom the court has found is not capable to manage such issues on their own.   A person under guardianship may be called an incapacitated person, protected person or ward.  Sometimes one person is appointed to be the guardian of money and property (“the estate” of the ward) and a second person is named the guardian of the person to make the healthcare decisions.  A guardian of property may be called a “conservator” or “guardian of estate.”  Guardians have obligations to both the ward they assist and court that appointed them.  Guardians typically have to make periodic reports to the court.  A guardianship appointment ceases upon the death of the ward or revocation by the court.
  • Trustees – The third guide is for trustees under revocable living trusts. In these cases, ownership of some or all money and property has been transferred to a trust and, as a result, the person named as a trustee has the power to make decisions about assets owned by or held in the name of the trust.  If there is more than one person appointed, they are co-trustees. A successor trustee may also be named and acts only if a trustee can no longer fulfill that role.  The trust grantor has the ability to name a new trustee at any time.
  • Representative Payees and VA Fiduciaries – From time to time, a government agency may find it necessary to appoint someone to manage income benefit payments of a person.  For example, the Social Security Administration may appoint a representative payee to manage a person’s Social Security benefits payment. The Department of Veterans Affairs has a similar program, but the person appointed is called a VA fiduciary. A representative payee or VA fiduciary only has authority to manage the benefit checks of the agency appointing him/her. They do not have legal authority to manage other property, financial affairs, or medical matters for the beneficiary.  To control other matters, the representative payee or VA fiduciary must have legal authority from another source, such as through a power of attorney, trust, or court appointment.  The agency naming the representative payee or VA fiduciary has the ability to revoke or change the appointment at any time.

All of the guides contain tips on how to spot financial exploitation and avoid scams.  The guides also include a list of agencies to contact to report fraud or a scam, as well as contact information for other agencies and organizations that can help financial caregivers with their duties.

Institutions are encouraged to provide financial caregivers copies of the guide applicable to their appointment in order to help them better understand their role, responsibilities and legal obligations, as well as the consequences for not acting in the principal’s best interest.  The guides can be found on the CFPB website.

Free Webinar on CFPB Investigations

CFPBCFPB Deputy Assistant Director of Enforcement Field Litigation, Tony Alexis, is set to speak on an upcoming Association of Corporate Counsel webcast on how to prepare for a CFPB investigation.  This is a free webcast to help  develop a response plan in the case of a CFPB investigation.

CFPB Investigations – Avoid Getting Blindsided
Thursday, December 12, 2013 at 11:30 to 12:30 p.m.

Tony Alexis and a panel of experts will cover:
•    What the CFPB is looking for and the timeline
•    Challenges and potential blind spots
•    How to get a handle on information quickly
•    Meeting discovery obligations

Click here to register for this webcast

The webcast is presented at no cost by the Association of Corporate Counsel, which serves 31,000 in-house corporate counsel, and is sponsored by Jordan Lawrence and Locke Lord. *CLE credit is available, $35 for ACC Members and $75 for non-members.