The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau probably isn’t going away, but it may be changing. As I wrote last week, the United States House of Representatives recently passed H.R. 10, the Financial CHOICE Act, which aims to curb the CFPB’s authority by altering the Bureau’s funding structure, giving the President the power to remove CFPB directors at will, and several other measures.
Some critics of the CFPB and the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act hope these potential changes will decrease the regulatory burden on consumer finance companies. Others are casting their hopes even higher. Notice that I wrote the Bureau “probably isn’t going away”—there’s a minor chance that it may, in fact, dissolve. Anything is possible with a Republican majority in the House, Senate, and Executive branch.
But no matter what happens, Fair Lending regulations are another story. In the CFPB’s possible absence, other regulatory bodies at the state and federal levels are poised to step in and continue enforcing more or less the same doctrine we’ve grown accustomed to over the last few years:
Regulators Aren’t the Only Ones Watching Your Business
Perhaps more important than any one regulatory body are the demands of your customers and capital partner. We’ve said it before, we’ll say it again: compliance is good business. Compliance keeps you in business. Smart consumer finance companies harness the CFPB’s guidance to protect their reputations and reduce risk for their stakeholders.
In summary: Don’t assume that you’ll have fewer compliance obligations anytime soon. Your organization needs to follow the law regardless of who’s enforcing it.
Can your compliance management system stand up to CFPB, DOJ, FTC, bank, and consumer scrutiny? Find out in our free, on-demand “Fair Lending in the Trump Era” webinar.