The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Payday Loan Rule (the “Rule”), with a looming compliance deadline in August 2019, is facing yet another attack—this time from trade groups seeking relief directly from the courts. On April 9, 2018, two payday lending industry trade associations — the Community Financial Services Association of America, Ltd. and the Consumer Services Alliance of Texas — filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas against the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) and its Acting Director, Mick Mulvaney, seeking an order enjoining and setting aside the Rule.
On June 2, 2016, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB” or “Bureau”) proposed a new rule under its authority to supervise and regulate certain payday, auto title, and other high-cost installment loans (the “Proposed Rule” or the “Rule”). These consumer loan products have been in the CFPB’s crosshairs for some time, and the Bureau formally announced that it was considering a rule proposal to end what it considers payday debt traps back in March 2015. Over a year later, and with input from stakeholders and other interested parties, the CFPB has now taken direct aim at these lending products by proposing stringent standards that may render short-term and longer-term, high-cost installment loans unworkable for consumers and lenders alike. At a minimum, the CFPB’s proposal seriously threatens the continued viability of a significant sector of the lending industry.
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On May 9, 2014, the Department of Veterans Affairs (“VA”) issued an Interim Final Rule defining which VA-guaranteed loans would be “qualified mortgages” or “QMs” for the purposes of the Truth in Lending Act’s (“TILA”) ability-to-repay requirements. With its recent release of Circular 26-13-3, the VA has now clarified the application of that rule through FAQs focusing largely on Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loans (“IRRRLs”). These loans are VA streamlined refinances, which generally allow for reduced income verification for eligible veterans’ loans. IRRRLs represent a small sliver of mortgage lending in the United States, but their treatment under VA’s Interim Final Rule has presented significant problems for some lenders.
On May 9, the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (“VA”) issued an interim final rule defining which VA-guaranteed and VA-originated loans will have qualified mortgage (“QM”) status under the Truth-in-Lending Act’s (“TILA’s”) Ability to Repay (“ATR”) rule. Read More
Earlier this week, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) issued a final rule (the “Final Rule”) that attempts to fix the double-counting problem when including loan originator compensation in the points and fees calculation for Qualified Mortgages (“QMs”) and high-cost loans under Section 1026.32 (“HOEPA Loans”). Read More
Financial life just got a little bit easier for stay-at-home moms and dads. For over a year and a half, regulations originally promulgated by the Federal Reserve (and reissued by the CFPB) have restricted credit access for “spouses and partners who do not work outside the home,” based on an interpretation of the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure Act (the “CARD Act”) that required a creditor to consider a card applicant’s “independent” ability to repay any credit extended. On May 3, the CFPB finalized amendments to Regulation Z that loosen the credit card underwriting standards, allowing consumers over age 21 to qualify based on any income to which they have a “reasonable expectation of access.” By acknowledging that the practical aspects of interfamily relationships may sometimes support a determination that a consumer has an ability to repay even when the consumer may not have a formal legal right to the underlying income or assets, the Bureau acquiesced to the requests of a broad-based coalition of politicians, consumer groups, and credit card issuers to remove an artificial barrier to the ability of stay-at-home spouses and partners to obtain and build credit.