CUNA outlines principles that should guide CFPB actions

March 8, 2023

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has missed many opportunities to leverage credit unions’ mission and history to the benefit of consumers, CUNA wrote to the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit Wednesday. The subcommittee will conduct a hearing Thursday on potential CFPB reforms.

“Consumers lose when one-size-fits-all rules force credit unions to pull back safe and affordable options from the market, pushing consumers towards predatory entities engaged in the very activity the CFPB’s rules were designed to curtail,” the letter reads. “Under Director Rohit Chopra’s tenure, the Bureau has repeatedly failed to recalibrate its approach to regulation in a manner that fulfills its consumer  protection mission without impeding consumers’ access to credit or safe and affordable financial products and services.”

CUNA highlighted several principles it believes should guide the CFPB’s regulatory activities, including:

  • Use the Bureau’s authority in a manner consistent with the original purpose of the CFPB and the spirit of the Dodd-Frank Act.
  • Appropriately tailor regulations to reduce disruption for community-based financial institutions.
  • Be consistent and transparent during the development and implementation of rulemakings and supervision and enforcement policies.
  • Regularly engage stakeholders throughout the policymaking process.
  • Consult with NCUA during the policymaking process and avoid implementing duplicative or contradictory policies.
  • Provide certainty to regulated entities by adopting clear “rules of the road” and prioritizing internal consistency.
  • Conduct thorough research prior to the adoption of a new rule or policy and base policy decisions on relevant data.
  • Ensure continued access to credit from reputable providers.
  • Encourage and support innovation in the consumer financial services marketplace.

CUNA also noted its support for CFPB-related legislation that would: fund the CFPB through the appropriations process, replace the single director with a bipartisan, multi-member commission, and require the CFPB to conduct a cost-benefit analysis on its rulemakings.