Well, here we go. Take a really good look at the last one. I already have one client that has received notice of audit. I can tell you it is my opinion that there will be some “fishing” going on. The CFPB will be looking to find justification for all this bluster.
- Redlining. Redlining has been a top priority since the Bureau’s inception in 2011 and both the Trump and Biden administrations, and that the CFPB intends to take “fresh approaches,” citing the DOJ’s anti-redlining initiative.
- Appraisal bias. Home valuations have traditionally been based on human judgment and discretion, and additional objective controls are needed. The CFPB has already held meetings with industry representatives concerning the policies, procedures and controls currently in use to better understand valuation issues. The Bureau is also partnering with the FHFA and prudential agencies on a long-standing rulemaking for QC standards for automated valuation methods stemming from a requirement in the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989, which is currently in the pre-rule stage.
- Special purpose credit programs (“SPCPs”). Also a top priority of Director Chopra, the CFPB seeks to promote usage of SPCPs to increase equitable access to credit.
- Small business lending. The CFPB issued a notice of proposed rulemaking that would implement Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act in September 2021, and encouraged public comments, which are due on January 6, 2022.
- Limited English Proficiency (“LEP”) consumers. LEP individuals face unique challenges in learning about and accessing consumer financial products and services because disclosures are generally not available in non-English languages. The CFPB’s LEP guidance issued in January 2021 sought to provide better guidance to the industry on serving LEP consumers, and in September 2021, the Bureau’s publication of a blog post on how mortgage lenders can better serve LEP borrowers.
- Focus on unfairness and discrimination in examinations and supervision. Violations of law will not be tolerated, especially during the pandemic. In the CFPB’s quest to advance racial and economic equity, the Bureau has now increased resources targeted toward small business lending. The CFPB will also pursue “other illegal practices outside of ECOA and HMDA,” with the goal of using its authority to narrow the racial wealth gap and ensure markets are clear, transparent and competitive. (What????)
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Nelson A. Locke, Esq.