Written By JiJi Bahhur, Regulatory Compliance Counsel
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently published three final rules addressing procedures and practices for enforcement of federal financial consumer laws. The final rules deal with the Bureau’s investigative and adjudicative processes and interactions with state law enforcement authorities.
A recent NAFCU Today story provided brief descriptions of each of the three final rules:
- “Investigations: This rule, which affects only credit unions with more than $10 billion in assets (the three largest), describes the CFPB’s procedures for investigating whether persons have engaged in conduct that violates federal consumer financial law. Similar to rules used by other regulators, it describes the bureau’s authority to conduct investigations, procedures for issuing civil investigative demands and the rights of those from whom the CFPB seeks to compel information.
- Adjudication proceedings: The rule explains that the CFPB can conduct administrative adjudications, or hearings, to ensure or enforce compliance with federal laws and regulations. The bureau drew on the experiences of other regulators and reviewed the public comments in setting the final provisions. The CFPB says the final rule should ensure a streamlined adjudication process that protects parties’ rights to fair and impartial proceedings.
- State official notification rule: This rule is to help the bureau stay informed about state-level legal developments relating to the Dodd-Frank Act, [t]he goal being to help the bureau ensure the act is enforced in a consistent manner.”
An interim final rule to implement the Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA) was also issued by the CFPB. Under the EAJA, certain prevailing parties in administrative proceedings can recover attorney fees and expenses. There will be a 60-day comment period once the interim rule is published in the Federal Register.
The above-mentioned rules will become effective immediately upon their publication in the Federal Register.