At a glanceFriday, September 17, 2021

Collection Industry News At A Glance - September 17, 2021
Friday September 17, 2021
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Tenth Circuit Applies TransUnion v. Ramirez To Find Standing In Single-Call Debt Collection Case

The U.S. Supreme Court’s recent TransUnion v. Ramirez decision on Article III standing was discussed at length and applied by the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in Lupia v. Medicredit, Inc., --- F. 4th ---, 2021 WL 3627103 (Aug. 17, 2021). Although Lupia involves the application of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act’s (“FDCPA”) bona fide error defense, it is important, for this blog’s purposes, because of its application of TransUnion v. Ramirez in concluding Plaintiff had standing based on the receipt of a single phone call.

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CFPB Report: Renters at Risk as COVID-19 Safety Net Ends

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) today released a report warning that millions of renters and their families may suffer previously avoided economic harms of the COVID-19 pandemic as federal and state relief programs end. The report, “Financial conditions for renters before and during the COVID-19 Pandemic,” finds that some government relief efforts likely helped maintain the financial stability of renters and their families, suggesting that many may be at risk as those programs expire.

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Trade groups file appeal from federal district court’s award of summary judgment to CFPB in challenge to payday loan rule

The two trade groups challenging the payment provisions in the CFPB’s 2017 final payday/auto title/high-rate installment loan rule have filed an appeal with the Fifth Circuit from the Texas federal district court’s final judgment granting the CFPB’s summary judgment motion and staying the compliance date for the payment provisions until 286 days after August 31, 2021.

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Student loan debt delays homebuying timeline

Over half of non-homeowning millennials (60%) say student loan debt is delaying them from purchasing a home, making them the population most affected by student debt, according to the National Association of Realtors’ 2021 impact of student loan debt report. By comparison, only 53% of Gen Xers, 37% of Baby Boomers and 39% of Gen Zers felt this way, according to the study. The report was conducted by Morning Consult, a data intelligence company, on behalf of the NAR and is based on an online poll that sampled nearly 2,000 student loan debt holders.

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Student loans: ‘Revolutionary’ new data shows average debt of recent graduates by degree

Amid a major student loan debt crisis in the U.S., a new report by the Texas Public Policy Foundation found that some degrees cost tens of thousands of dollars more than others. The report — which uses new data released by the Department of Education (ED)'s College Scorecard to examine typical college debt by credential and program — contributes to a burgeoning trend of transparency that's aimed at scrutinizing the cost of tuition generally.

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Minnesota Establishes Licensing Requirement for Debt Buyers

Earlier this summer, Minnesota extended many of its collection agency requirements to debt buyers through the enactment of H. F. No. 6. As of January 1, 2022, debt buyers will need to hold a collection agency license or have a licensing application filed with the Minnesota Department of Commerce (Department) in order to “engage[] in the purchase of any charged-off account, bill, or other indebtedness for collection purposes, whether the business collects the account, bill, or other indebtedness, hires a third party for collection, or hires an attorney for litigation related to the collection.” Information on how to register for a Minnesota collection agency license can be accessed here.

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CFPB Sets June 2022 Compliance Date for Payday Rule

Nearly four years after the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued its final November 2017 "Payday, Vehicle Title, and Certain High-Cost Installment Loans" Rule (Payday Rule), we at long last have a compliance date — June 2022.

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Department of Education Revises Student Lending Policy; State Regulators Announce Support

In a letter to the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) this week, state financial regulators expressed support for its new legal interpretation regarding state regulation of federal student loan servicers and debt collectors, according to a news release.

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Michigan to Move Licensing and Regulation Database to New System

The Bureau of Professional Licensing (BPL) within the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) is moving to a new online licensing and regulatory database for health and occupational professions, called Michigan Professional Licensing User System (MiPLUS).

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U.S. banking regulators working on climate risk management guidance, official says

WASHINGTON, Sept 15 (Reuters) - U.S. banking regulators are working on new climate risk management guidance for large lenders, a top official said on Wednesday, in another sign of efforts to incorporate the risks posed by rising temperatures into financial rules.

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Student Debt Holding Buyers Back

Sixty percent of non-homeowning millennials say student loan debt is delaying their ability to buy a home, according to a survey released by the National Association of Realtors

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Student loan refinance rates rise, but 10-year rates remain near record lows

For borrowers with credit scores of 720 or higher who used the Credible marketplace to select a lender, during the week of Sept. 6, 2021: Rates on 10-year fixed-rate loans averaged 3.50%, up from 3.42% the week before and down from 4.20% a year ago. Last week’s rates were a record low for 10-year fixed-rate loans.

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One-Two Punch: FTC Does About-Face on Treatment of Debt for HSR Purposes and Casts Doubt on Informal Interpretation Program

In a recent blog post, the Acting Director of the Federal Trade Commission Bureau of Competition announced the reversal of the Federal Trade Commission’s (“FTC”) decades-long position regarding the treatment of debt repayment when determining whether a premerger notification filing under the Hart-Scott-Rodino (“HSR”) Act is required. Effective September 27, 2021, companies and individuals that do not file HSR based on excluding retired debt from the transaction value may face enforcement action.

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Online and Offline Disclosure of Data Collection Practices under California’s Privacy Law

California regulates consumer privacy via the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), an expansive legislation reminiscent of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). CCPA imposes obligations on covered businesses to (1) give consumers notice of what personal data it collects, how the data is used or shared and whether the data is being sold, and (2) set forth the rights that consumers have with respect to the data collected from them. 

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CoreLogic Reports June U.S. Foreclosure Rate Lowest in Over Two Decades

IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--CoreLogic, a leading global property information, analytics and data-enabled solutions provider, today released its monthly Loan Performance Insights Report for June 2021.

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Serious delinquencies improve for nonprime mortgage borrowers

Numbers for late-stage delinquency cure rates in the securitized nonprime mortgage market improved notably in the second quarter, suggesting recovery rates are strong even for nontraditional borrowers.

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FTC Streamlines Consumer Protection and Competition Investigations in Eight Key Enforcement Areas to Enable Higher Caseload

At the joint recommendation from its Bureau of Consumer Protection and Bureau of Competition, the Federal Trade Commission voted to approve and make public a series of resolutions that will enable agency staff to efficiently and expeditiously investigate conduct in core FTC priority areas over the next ten years.

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Biden could slash student debt in half for the average borrower if Congress doubles the Pell Grant, report finds

The Pell Grant, which is a form of federal financial aid given to low-income students, currently gives a maximum of $6,495 per year. But Democrats' $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill includes a plan to raise that award, and a new report found that if Congress succeeds in doubling it, the vast majority of borrowers will see their student debt cut in half.

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Equifax will now offer credit reports in Spanish

Equifax will offer Spanish-translated credit reports for free, both online and via mail, the credit reporting company said Monday. The move will help more than 62 million Spanish speakers in the U.S. Equifax is the first credit reporting firm to offer the service.

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Time to Submit Comments for the Regulation to the New California Debt Collection Licensing Act

Last month, the California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (the "DFPI") published a notice inviting comments for its second rulemaking regarding the rules that will be promulgated under the new California Debt Collection Licensing Act (the "DCLA"). The DCLA was enacted pursuant to Senate Bill 908, and will become operative on January 1, 2022. Although the DFPI has not yet promulgated rules for the DCLA, the DFPI has started to accept applications for a debt collector license.

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Minnesota Regulator Issues Consent Order Against Lexington Law for Credit Services Violations

The Minnesota Department of Commerce has settled a regulatory action against John C. Heath, an attorney doing business as Lexington Law Firm, for violating the state’s laws on fees and registration requirements for credit services organizations.

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AG Healey Launches Investigation Into T-Mobile Data Breach, Urges Consumers to Protect Themselves From Identity Theft and Fraud

BOSTON — Following a major data breach at international wireless carrier T-Mobile, US, Inc. that compromised personally-identifying information of over 50 million people nationwide, Attorney General Maura Healey has launched an investigation to determine whether the company had proper safeguards in place to protect consumer information and mobile device information.

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Attorney General Bonta Commends Department of Education for Recognizing States’ Vital Role in Investigating Student Loan Servicers

OAKLAND – California Attorney General Rob Bonta commended the U.S. Department of Education (ED) for rescinding an erroneous DeVos-era interpretation of federal law that attempted to shield student loan servicers from state-level oversight and enforcement.

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SBA enhances disaster loan program citing Delta variant challenges

The Small Business Administration on Thursday announced improvements to its disaster loan program in an effort to help more small businesses access financial support from the government as the Delta variant of COVID-19 continues to trip up business operations nationwide. For one, the SBA is raising loan limits in its Economic Injury Disaster Loan program — low-interest loans to be paid back over 30 years — from $500,000 to $2 million. Funds may be used for any operating expenses, including purchasing equipment and making payments on debt.

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CFPB examines college credit card agreement decline

A new report from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) said the market for college credit cards continued its general declining trend in 2020. The 12th annual college credit card report found that agreements with alumni associations made up the largest share of the market in terms of the number of agreements, accounts and amounts of payments made by issuers to their counterparties. The report revealed that the total volume of payments by issuers decreased to $20,882,930, from $24,980,457 in 2019 while 10 percent of active 2019 agreements were terminated during the year.

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Student Loan Forgiveness Extended to January 2022: What You Should Know

In response to the economic hardship created by the coronavirus pandemic, the U.S. government suspended payments and interest on student loans starting in March 2020. Now that vaccine distribution in the U.S. is widespread and businesses have been reopening, many have wondered just how long the student loan forgiveness program would continue. The Biden administration answered that question in August 2021, announcing a final extension of the student loan pause. Here are the details about what this means for those with student loans.

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FTC Sends Refund Checks to People Harmed by Abusive Debt Collector

The Federal Trade Commission is sending checks to 603 people who paid money they did not owe to a debt collector that used deceptive and abusive collection methods.

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U.S. banking regulator proposes removal of updated fair lending regulations

WASHINGTON, Sept 8 (Reuters) - The U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency on Wednesday proposed rescinding recently updated fair lending rules, as the agency begins work on drafting a new, unified regulation with other bank watchdogs.

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Mortgage rates hold steady, giving refi holdouts another chance to save

Even as the demand for refinances slips, mortgage rates are staying solid — and that means homeowners sitting on the fence still have an opportunity to save themselves some real money. For the second week in a row, mortgage rates in the U.S. have displayed minimal movement, according to a weekly survey by one of the country’s largest mortgage facilitators.

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OCC to Hold Hearing on Charges Against Former Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. Executives; Agency Seeks Prohibition Order, Orders to Cease and Desist, and Civil Money Penalties

WASHINGTON—The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) today announced a public hearing before an Administrative Law Judge beginning Monday, September 13, 2021, in Sioux Falls, S.D. The OCC will litigate enforcement actions against Claudia Russ Anderson, former Community Bank Group Risk Officer, David Julian, former Chief Auditor, and Paul McLinko, former Executive Audit Director of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Sioux Falls, S.D. This hearing represents the culmination of the OCC’s longstanding efforts to hold these individuals accountable for material failures in risk management and for consumer harm.

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TransUnion Accelerates Growth of Identity-Based Solutions with Agreement to Acquire Neustar for $3.1 Billion

TransUnion (NYSE: TRU) has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Neustar, a premier identity resolution company with leading solutions in Marketing, Fraud and Communications, from a private investment group led by Golden Gate Capital and with minority participation by GIC. The acquisition expands TransUnion’s powerful digital identity capabilities through the addition of Neustar’s distinctive data and analytics, enabling consumers and businesses to transact online with greater confidence.

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Industry Events

2021 Atlanta Regional Networking & Advocacy Training Event

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Renaissance Atlanta Waverly Hotel & Convention Center 2450 Galleria Parkway
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September 27 - 28 , 2021

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October 13 - 15 , 2021