CFPB Publishes Rulemaking Agenda; Decision on Debt Collection Rule Delay Expected This Month

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has apparently dropped a plan that was initiated under its former leadership to create a rule that defines “abusive” conduct under the unfair, deceptive, and abusive acts or practices, known as UDAAP, according to its Spring 2021 rulemaking agenda, which was published on Friday. Also put on the chopping block was a proposed plan to require additional disclosures provided to individuals taking out payday loans. Related to debt collection, the Bureau said it is still considering a final rule that would delay the effective date of Regulation F, its debt collection rule, for 60 days, and plans to issue a final decision this month.

The CFPB breaks up its rulemaking agenda into four parts — the preamble, the rule list — or things it is actively working on, the long-term action list — or things on its radar that it would like to eventually get to, and the completed action list.

The debt collection rule is still on the rule list because of the proposal to delay the effective date, and the CFPB disclosed that it is looking to issue a final rule on that proposal in June 2021. About 20 comments were filed on the proposal and summaries of those comments can be read here, here, here, and here.

Issuing a rule to define abusive acts or practices was listed on the CFPB’s long-term action list the last time it issued a rulemaking agenda, back in the Fall of 2020, when Kahtleen Kraninger was still the Director. The idea of a rule to codify what the CFPB is looking for when it investigates alleged abusive acts or practices was initially floated under former Acting Director Mick Mulvaney. The CFPB did issue a policy statement in January 2020 that sought to define abusive acts or practices.

One final note from the publication of the updated agenda. The CFPB did say that it expects its next rulemaking agenda — scheduled to be published in the Fall — “will reflect the permanent Bureau Director’s priorities,” on the expectation that Rohit Chopra, who has been nominated to be the new Director of the agency, will be in place by then.

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