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Bank of America pays $12 million for filing false HMDA data

Charlotte, NC
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The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued a Consent Order against Bank of America, N.A., (Respondent) after reviewing the data collection, recording, and reporting practices of the bank and finding the following violations of law: Respondent has failed to accurately collect, record and report information on mortgage loan applicants’ race, ethnicity, and sex, in violation of the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA), 12 U.S.C. §§ 2801–2810, and its implementing regulation, Regulation C, 12 C.F.R. pt. 1003, and in violation of the Consumer Financial Protection Act.

The bank discovered that its loan officers were inconsistent in making required disclosures related to the collection of applicant demographic information when taking applications by telephone, instead reporting that the applicants had declined to provide it. The bank made some efforts to enforce compliance with the regulation's requirement in this regard, with varying results. The bank's records indicate that many of the applications or loans reported by the bank in its annual HMDA filings incorrectly indicate that applicants had refused to provide demographic information, because their loan officers had failed to even ask for it.

The bank was ordered to pay a civil money penalty of $12 million; to refrain from violating the HMDA or Regulation C; develop and maintain policies, procedures, and controls to ensure compliance with HMDA and Regulation C (with specified provisions); and create and implement a comprehensive compliance plan (including specified steps for addressing each action required by the Order, a mechanism to ensure the bank's Board is kept apprised of the status of compliance actions, and specific time frames and deadlines for implementation.

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