Wow. As a licensed attorney and mortgage industry specialist, I have been focused tightly on assisting small lenders and mortgage brokers regarding agency compliance and audit preparation. I am here to tell you there are still a lot of folks out there who think it’s still “business as usual” from the pre-SAFE Act and CFPB days.
Well, it’s not. Just google search companies like the large lender in Utah who recently answered CFPB findings regarding mortgage loan officer steering (comp plan structure) by paying huge fines. It didn’t stop there. Now they are apparently being directed to refund money to clients on any loan “tainted” by these non-compliant pay plans. OK, in trouble, what’s the solution? Pay lots and lots of money, and to wake up every morning for the near future realizing they are now on every agency radar and even an intentional miss-step will likely cause another visit.
Your situation doesn’t have to be like that. If you as a small broker or lender take the situation seriously. Even if your past compliance efforts may have been a little lacking, you will be in better shape when your audit commences if you can demonstrate that you worked hard to get compliant. How the very first audit interview goes will set the tone for the audit. Wouldn’t you prefer that there was a presumption of compliance, rather than a presumption of non-compliance?
That’s where an experienced compliance consultant pays off big. A person with actual experience in the trenches preferably trained in the law, who can guide you into a safer harbor and then be available to assist with audits or defense as required. And defend you if you find yourself in federal court.
So answer me honestly. Are you comfortable with your compliance program? If so, good luck. If maybe, why not let me take a look at what you presently offer? If not, run don’t walk to the phone and call me.
There is no better feeling that closing an audit with minimal findings. I can be reached at 800-557-6580, that’s it for now.