CFPB Extends Open Comment Period for Debt Collection Rule
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced yesterday that it would extend the open comment period for its proposed Debt Collection Rule. Interested parties now have until September 18, 2019 to submit comments.
CFPB’s proposed rule would establish new rules on debt collection, primarily for third-party debt collectors. If finalized, it would amend the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), which hasn’t been modified since 1977.
Most importantly, the proposed rule would introduce new restrictions on communications between debt collectors and consumers. Collectors would only be able to make seven attempts per week to reach consumers by telephone. If the collector and consumer communicate by telephone, the debt collector would not be able to contact the consumer again for seven days.
Reactions to the proposed rule have been mixed. Industry groups have generally praised the proposal while expressing hope that the CFPB will modify it to address outstanding concerns. Consumer groups worry that the rule would allow debt collectors to send unlimited amounts of texts and emails to consumers.
Either way, industry and consumer groups now have an extra 30 days to submit their thoughts on the proposed rule to the Federal Register. Interested parties can submit comments here.