CFPB institutes interim rule for small creditors in rural areas

By Mark Iandolo | Mar 30, 2016

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) — The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has announced an interim final rule broadening the provisions for small creditors that operate in rural and under-served areas.

This new rule will take effect March 31 and implement Congress’ recent legislation, the Helping Expand Lending Practices in Rural Communities (HELP) Act. The goal of these efforts is to help small creditors and ultimately consumers in rural areas.

“The Consumer Bureau has acted to implement the recent law that extends to more small creditors the specific provisions for operating in rural or under-served areas,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “This rule provides broader eligibility for lenders serving those areas to originate balloon-payment qualified and high-cost mortgages.”

Prior to the HELP Act, small creditors were only eligible for helpful provisions if they mostly operated in rural areas. With the new act, any small creditor who has operations in a rural or under-served area, even if it is not their predominant market, can access the provisions.

The CFPB will take comments on the rule for 30 days after making it public in the Federal Register, the bureau said.

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