Legal Briefs

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)

The CFPB has released a Financial Aid Comparison Shopper. The Financial Aid Comparison Shopper is an interactive online tool designed to help families plan for the costs of post-secondary education.

The CFPB has published a proposed amendment to Reg Z. The proposed amendment tweaks the limits to the total fees that a credit card issuer may require a consumer to pay. The current regulation sets the limit at 25 percent and applies prior to account opening and during the first year after account opening. The amendment will stipulate that the limit will apply only during the first year after account opening. Comments are due by June 11, 2012.

The CFBP released a bulletin clarifying that financial institutions under the CFPB’s supervision may be held responsible for the actions of the companies with which they contract. In the bulletin, the CFPB recommended that supervised financial institutions take steps to ensure that business arrangements with service providers do not present unwarranted risks to consumers.

The CFPB issued a report documenting its compliance with the Plain Writing Act.

The CFPB announced that it will pursue discriminatory lenders. The CFPB will use all of its available legal avenues, including disparate impact, to pursue lenders whose practices discriminate against consumers. The bureau will equip consumers with the information they need to spot the warning signs of discrimination.

Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)

The OFAC SDN list was updated again. Last update: April 12, 2012.

Security and Exchange Commission (SEC)

The SEC has established a website to gather public comment on SEC Initiatives under the JOBS Act. The site will allow the public to have an opportunity to voice its views before rules and amendments are proposed under the JOBS Act. Topics available for comment include Reopening American Capital Markets to Emerging Growth Companies, Access to Capital for Job Creators, Crowdfunding, Small Company Capital Formation, Private Company Flexibility and Growth, Capital Expansion, and Outreach on Changes to the Law.

Oregon Governor

Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber signed Senate Bill 1552 into law on April 11, 2012. SB 1552 offers mediation to homeowners in foreclosure or underwater in their mortgages, giving them an opportunity to discuss ways to avoid foreclosure with their financial institution and a neutral third party. In addition, it will end the dual-track system in which one department of the creditor is actively negotiating a modification while another is actively pursuing foreclosure. Most credit unions will be able to file an exemption from the mediation requirement.

Questions? Contact the Compliance Hotline: 1.800.546.4465,

Posted in Compliance News.