BCFP Introduces Interim Final Rule on FCRA Updates

The interim rule includes updates to assist businesses in compliance with requirements of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act.

9/12/2018 2:00 PM

BCFP Introduces Interim Final Rule on FCRA Updates

ACA International is reviewing the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection’s interim final rule released Wednesday with updates reflecting changes made to the Fair Credit Reporting Act in the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act (S.2155.)

According to a news release from the bureau:

S. 2155, passed in May 2018, “requires nationwide consumer reporting agencies to provide ‘national security freezes’ free of charge to consumers. The ‘national security freeze’ restricts prospective lenders from obtaining access to a consumer’s credit report, which makes it harder for identity thieves to open accounts in the consumer’s name.

The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act mandates that whenever the FCRA requires a consumer to receive either the Summary of Consumer Rights or the Summary of Consumer Identity Theft Rights, a notice regarding the new security freeze right also must be included. The Summary of Consumer Rights is a summary of rights to obtain and dispute information in consumer reports and to obtain credit scores. The Summary of Consumer Identity Theft Rights is a summary of rights of identity theft victims. The FCRA requires the Bureau to write model forms of these documents. Consumer reporting agencies and other entities can use the Bureau’s model forms or their own substantially similar forms.”

The legislation also requires nationwide consumer reporting agencies to include an initial fraud alert in a consumer’s file for a minimum of one year.

“A fraud alert informs a prospective lender that a consumer may have been a victim of identity theft and requires that the lender take steps to verify the identity of anyone seeking credit in the consumer’s name. Congress set an effective date of Sept. 21, 2018, for the security freeze right, the notice requirement, and the change in duration for initial fraud alerts,” according to the BCFP news release.

The interim final rule, issued Sept. 12, updates the bureau’s FCRA model forms, incorporating the new required notice and the change to the minimum duration of initial fraud alerts to assist businesses in complying with the new law. The interim final rule also takes steps to mitigate the impact of these changes on users of the model forms published by the Bureau in November 2012 by permitting various compliance alternatives, according to the news release.

The BCFP invites comments on the interim final rule and any other aspects of the bureau’s model forms to inform any possible further rulemaking. The interim final rule is available here. Comments are due 60 days after the rule is published in the Federal Register. ACA International will submit comments on the interim final rule and provide updates in ACA Daily.

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