Financial services companies - banks, non-bank lenders and loan servicers, auto finance companies, student loan companies, debt collectors, credit card issuers, non-traditional finance companies, and other market participants - face numerous legal challenges today, including government investigations and enforcement actions, a shifting regulatory landscape, novel civil litigation theories and other litigation risks. Especially as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and other regulators issue guidance and promulgate new rules and regulations impacting the consumer finance industry, it is now more critical than ever that corporate counsel stay abreast of these developments and related enforcement and litigation trends in order to manage institutional risks. Recognizing this need, Goodwin's LenderLaw Watch monitors, chronicles and analyzes news and legal issues impacting our clients and the consumer finance industry.

What You Need To Know About The CFPB’s Proposal to Use the Dodd-Frank Act to Expand the FDCPA to First-Party Debt Collectors

Speculation abounds regarding what the CFPB’s expected 2015 rules regarding first party debt collectors will be.  Here’s the background you need to know. On November 12, 2013, the CFPB issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, seeking comments to its proposal to update the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”).  As…

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Financial Services Firms' Projected Cybersecurity Spending Increase Is Money Well Spent

One of the most persistent and insidious threats to companies is cyber attacks.  Whether these attacks involve theft of intellectual property, installation of malware, or denial of service, they pose a significant risk to businesses and their customers.  For many companies, especially financial services companies, the risk is heightened by…

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Foreclosure Protection is Back in the Spotlight: CFPB Proposes New Rules for Mortgage Servicers

The CFPB recently proposed additional amendments to its Mortgage Servicing Rules which, if implemented, would provide additional protections for mortgage borrowers facing default or foreclosure.  These amendments, which the CFPB announced on November 20, 2014, are the latest in a series of revisions to the Rules (which we have discussed…

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Ninth Circuit Ruling on Customer Agreements Affects Ability to Arbitrate TCPA and FDCPA Claims

On November 10, 2014, the Ninth Circuit reversed a district court’s order dismissing and directing to arbitration a putative nationwide class action alleging Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) violations, finding that the Customer Agreement containing the arbitration clause was unenforceable for lack of mutual assent.  Knutson v. Sirius XM Radio…

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CFPB Spotlight Still On Student Loans

The latest CFPB Supervisory Highlights report details the Bureau’s concerns regarding student loan lenders.  The report, which is the fifth edition of Supervisory Highlights, generally covers supervisory activities between March and June 2014.  In it, the CFPB notes that its examiners found the following concerns when reviewing practices of student…

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CFPB Finalizes Mortgage Rules Amendments

On October 22, the CFPB issued amendments to the Dodd-Frank Act mortgage rules that took effect in January 2014.  The amendments include: ATR/QM Cure Provision: Under the Ability-to-Repay/Qualified Mortgage Rule, a mortgage loan must meet certain requirements to be considered a “qualified mortgage”.  One such requirement is that the points and fees…

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CFPB Takes Action to Enforce New Mortgage Servicing Rules

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has entered a consent order with a mortgage bank following CFPB’s allegations that the bank violated the new mortgage servicing rules.  CFPB claimed that the bank: ​took an unreasonably long time to process borrowers’ applications for loan modifications or other foreclosure relief; failed to…

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CFPB Rule Defines "Larger Participants" In International Money Transfer Market

On September 23, the CFPB issued its final rule amending the regulation defining larger participants of certain consumer financial product and service markets specifically to add a definition for larger participants in the market for international money transfers. The rule defines such “larger participants” as those entities that have at least one million aggregate…

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Is Knowing Enough? The FTC's Concerns Regarding Mobile Banking Practices May Force You to Do ...

On September 10, 2014, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) posted a comment in response to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) request for information regarding the use of mobile banking services and products specifically utilized by economically vulnerable or underserved consumers.  After briefly articulating some of the benefits of mobile…

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CFPB Director Proposes to Supervise "Captive" Auto Finance Companies

On September 18, CFPB Director Richard Cordray delivered remarks at a Field Hearing about CFPB’s latest proposed rule, which would allow it to begin regulating “captive” finance companies – those entities owned by automotive manufacturers “for the primary purpose of facilitating sales for their parent companies and associated dealers.” In his…

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