WASHINGTON (UPDATED: 3:15 P.M. ET, 1/8/13)--The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) should bring its awareness of the credit union difference into play as it develops any new rules, the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) urged in a letter to agency director Richard Cordray today.
CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney wrote that credit unions do not always expect to be exempt from new regulations. However, he added, "There are a number of factors unique to credit unions that support liberal use of the CFPB's exemption authorities for our members, and we urge the agency to be as proactive as possible in considering how those authorities should be applied.
"We urge the agency to help direct its appreciation of the way credit unions operate into meaningful regulatory relief for credit unions so that they can do even more to serve their communities," he added.
CUNA also urged the bureau to focus more attention in 2013 on regulating entities in the financial marketplace that engage in abusive practices, such as payday lenders, that have been unregulated or under-regulated to date.
The call for a honed approach to regulation comes just before the CFPB is expected to release final versions of several mortgage regulations required under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act.
The CUNA CEO said credit unions are most concerned about:
- The CFPB's pending definition of "qualified mortgage" under the Ability to Repay proposal;
- Whether the agency is going to expand the definition of "finance charge" under Regulation Z;
- Key requirements in the mortgage servicing proposal; and
- Provisions in the mortgage loan originator compensation proposal.
Cheney highlighted CUNA's advocacy efforts, which include supporting a delayed compliance date of up to 18 months, or 24 months in some cases, for new mortgage regulations. CUNA also has urged the CFPB to provide coordinated and achievable compliance dates with as much time as possible for institutions to reprogram systems and deal with the operational challenges the new mortgage rules will present, he noted.