At the end of February, the CFPB released a Final Policy Statement (Policy Statement) applicable to no-action letters (NALs). In general, the statement provides that:
"Under the Policy, Bureau staff would, in its discretion, issue no-action letters (NALs) to specific applicants in instances involving innovative financial products or services that promise substantial consumer benefit where there is substantial uncertainty whether or how specific provisions of statutes implemented or regulations issued by the Bureau would be applied (for example if, because of intervening technological developments, the application of statutes and regulations to a new product is novel and complicated). The Policy is also designed to enhance compliance with applicable federal consumer financial laws."
The Policy Statement also went on to provide that:
"A [no-action letter] NAL would advise the recipient that, subject to its stated limitations, the staff has no present intention to recommend initiation of an enforcement or supervisory action against the requester with respect to a specified matter. NALs would be subject to modification or revocation at any time at the discretion of the staff, and may be conditioned on particular undertakings by the applicant with respect to product or service usage and data-sharing with the Bureau. Issued NALs generally would be publicly disclosed. NALs would be nonbinding on the Bureau, and would not bind courts or other actors who might challenge a NAL recipient’s product or service, such as other regulators or parties in litigation. The Bureau believes that there may be significant opportunities to facilitate innovation and access, and otherwise substantially enhance consumer benefits, through the Policy."The Policy Statement explains the process to apply for a no-action letter from the CFPB. Additionally, when it comes to credit unions the Policy Statement only applies to credit unions directly supervised by the CFPB (those with over $10 million in assets).
The complete Policy Statement may be accessed electronically at:
Balogun, Shereefat. "To Innovate or Not to Innovate... Ask the CFPB!."The NAFCU Compliance Blog. NAFCU, 19 Feb. 2016. Web. 1 March 2016.