On 12/13/18, the CFPB invited the public to comment on its proposed Policy on No-Action Letters and the CFPB’s Product Sandbox. The proposal is intended to carry out certain authorities of the Bureau under Federal consumer financial law.
As the Dodd-Frank Act provided the CFPB authorities to ensure that outdated, unnecessary, or unduly burdensome regulations are regularly identified and address, the Bureau initially proposed No-Action Letters in 2014 and finalized it in February 2016. The 2016 issuance provides for the issuance of “No-Action Letters” consisting of non-binding staff-level no-action recommendations. The Bureau has issued only one such No-Action Letter to date.
The Bureau is proposing to revise the 2016 Policy and proposing the BCFP Product Sandbox through its proposed Policy on No-Action Letters and the BCFP Product Sandbox (Policy) in order to more effectively carry out its statutory purpose and objectives. As noted, the Bureau has provided only one No-Action Letter under the 2016 Policy. The Bureau believes this strongly suggests that both the process required to obtain a No-Action Letter and the relief available under the 2016 Policy have not provided firms with sufficient incentives to seek No-Action Letters from Bureau staff. Accordingly, the Bureau is seeking comment on a number of changes to the 2016 Policy that would address these issues and bring certain aspects of the Bureau's policy more into alignment with no-action letter programs offered by other Federal regulators. The proposed Policy has two parts. Part I is a revision of the 2016 Policy designed to increase the utilization of the Policy and bring certain elements more in line with similar no-action letter programs offered by other agencies. Part II is a description of the BCFP Product Sandbox.
The proposed Policy has the following overarching goals: (1) Streamlining the application process; (2) streamlining the Bureau's processing of applications; (3) expanding the types of statutory and/or regulatory relief available; (4) specifying procedures for an extension where the relief initially provided is of limited duration; and (5) providing for coordination with existing or future programs offered by other regulators designed to facilitate innovation.
Comments may be submitted, identified by Docket No. [CFPB-2018-0042], by any of the following methods:
Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
Email: FederalRegisterComments@cfpb.gov. Include Docket No. [CFPB-2018-0042] in the subject line of the email.
Mail/Hand Delivery/Courier: Comment Intake, Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, 1700 G Street NW, Washington, DC 20552.
Instructions: All submissions should include the agency name and docket number. Because paper mail in the Washington, DC area and at the Bureau is subject to delay, commenters are encouraged to submit comments electronically. In general, all comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov. In addition, comments will be available for public inspection and copying at 1700 G Street NW, Washington, DC 20552, on official business days between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. You can make an appointment to inspect the documents by telephoning (202) 435-7275. All comments, including attachments and other supporting materials, will become part of the public record and subject to public disclosure. Sensitive personal information, such as account numbers or Social Security numbers, should not be included. Comments generally will not be edited to remove any identifying or contact information.
Comments are due on 2/11/19.
The entire proposal can be found here.