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Monday, October 7, 2013

CFPB Issues Trial-Disclosure Policy with ABA and ABIA-Suggested Changes

As previously reported, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau last week released its final policy allowing companies to test new consumer disclosures on a case-by-case basis in exchange for sharing the results of the tests with the bureau. The final policy includes several changes advocated by ABIA and ABA.

Under the policy, which takes effect upon publication in the Federal Register, the CFPB would approve limited-time exemptions from federal disclosure laws to enable the companies to conduct the trials, and the bureau would use the resulting information to improve its disclosure rules and model forms.

In response to requests from ABA and ABIA, the CFPB specified that: companies and associations are encouraged to collaborate in trials (although the bureau will not approve a trial unless all entities involved are identified); companies may reach out to the CFPB in advance to discuss a potential trial; the bureau will specify in its waivers that an approved trial disclosure is not deceptive; and the bureau will permit a company to respond and appeal should it revoke a waiver.

The CFPB declined to expand its safe harbor to other federal regulations and state regulations, citing a lack of legal authority, but it pledged to confer and collaborate with federal and state regulators to secure support.

Read the final policy. 

Read ABA and ABIA’s letter.