The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (title VIII of the Consumer Credit Protection Act) (15 USC 1692) became law in 1977. Now, after more than 40 years later, big changes are underway.
- On May 7, 2019, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a proposal (the May 2019 Proposed Rule) to amend Regulation F, which implements the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). The May 2019 Proposed Rule prescribed federal rules governing the activities of debt collectors, as that term is defined in the FDCPA.
- A supplemental proposal on time-barred debt was published on February 21, 2020. The supplemental proposal modifies the May 2019 Proposed Rule by adding a proposed §1006.26(c), as well as a related provision of §1006.34(c), Model Forms, and Official Interpretations. It would require debt collectors to make certain disclosures when collecting time-barred debts.
- On October 30, 2020, the CFPB issued a final Regulation F, which governs the activities of debt collectors. The final rule:
- Addresses, among other things, communications in connection with debt collection and prohibitions on harassment or abuse, false or misleading representations, and unfair practices in debt collection.
- Will be effective one year after publication in the Federal Register.
- Applies to the activities of debt collectors subject to the FDCPA and does not apply to the activities of creditors who are not FDCPA debt collectors.
- The final rule promised a second “disclosure-focused final rule” in December.
- On December 18, 2020, the CFPB released the second part of Regulation F. The most recent release has three primary components dealing with validation notices, passive debt collection through negative reporting, and the collection of time-barred debt.
- Both parts of the final rules are effective on November 30, 2021.
This program provides a review of both parts of the final rule. Regulation F applies to debt collectors. The rules apply directly to financial institutions if the institution is collecting a debt owed to a third party or is collected its own debt, but is using a different name. Failure to follow the rule when collecting direct debt can result in UDAP violations.
Participants receive a detailed manual that serves as a handbook long after the program is completed.