Comments due on CFPB interim final rule amending Reg F (FDCPA)
The CFPB on Monday [4/19/2021] issued an interim final rule in support of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) eviction moratorium. The CFPB’s rule requires debt collectors to provide written notice to tenants of their rights under the eviction moratorium and prohibits debt collectors from misrepresenting tenants’ eligibility for protection from eviction under the moratorium. In its press release, the CFPB said debt collectors who evict tenants who may have rights under the CDC's moratorium without providing notice of the moratorium or who misrepresent tenants’ rights under the moratorium can be prosecuted by federal agencies and state attorneys general for violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and are also subject to private lawsuits by tenants.
A temporary eviction moratorium ordered by the CDC has been extended through June 30, 2021. The CDC order generally prohibits landlords from evicting tenants for non-payment of rent, if the tenant submits a written declaration that they are unable to afford full rental payments and would likely become homeless or have to move into a shared living setting. This prohibition applies to an agent or attorney acting as a debt collector on behalf of a landlord or owner of the residential property.
Under the FDCPA interim final rule, debt collectors, including attorneys, seeking to evict tenants for non-payment of rent must provide tenants who may have rights under the CDC order with clear and conspicuous written notice of those rights. The notice must be provided on the same date as the eviction notice, or, if no eviction notice is required by law, on the date that the eviction action is filed. The CFPB is providing debt collectors with sample language to satisfy the rule’s disclosure requirements.
The interim final rule will become effective May 3, 2021, with earlier compliance optional. Comments will be accepted for 15 days following publication in the Federal Register. It has been posted to BankersOnline's Regulations pages for Regulation F, 12 CFR Part 1006.
PUBLICATION AND COMMENT PERIOD UPDATE: This rule has been scheduled for publication on 4/22/2021, and comments will be accepted through 5/10/2021.