ABA, CBA: CFPB should provide more incentives for firms to participate in trial disclosure programs

tumblr_lhpgme0CMZ1qza3ak1In a comment letter to the CFPB this week, the American Bankers Association and Consumer Bankers Association said that the watchdog should provide more incentives for financial services companies to participate in trial disclosure programs.

The CFPB requested comment on a proposal to exempt individual firms on a case-by-case basis from federal disclosure requirements in order to test trial disclosures.

“Companies and trade associations should be allowed to jointly develop test proposals and be permitted to use approved trial disclosures for at least a one-year period and for the period time after the test during which the Bureau is evaluating the results,” the ABA and CBA said.

The groups also said that the safe harbor for trial disclosures should be expanded to include both state and federal disclosure requirements, adding that the CFPB should state in the waiver that an approved trial disclosure “is not deceptive.”

Additionally, the groups recommended that due process procedures be added to the trial disclosure program to allow participating firms to correct a waiver violation or appeal a waiver revocation decision, adding that the CFPB should also be responsible for informing a test group about its participation and result of the trial disclosure program.

“Placing this obligation on participating companies would unfairly and unnecessarily expose them to the risk of reputational harm,” the groups said. “[We] suggest the CFPB engage in preliminary discussions with companies expressing an interest in proposing a trial disclosure program, as this would allow a company to gauge the agency’s level of interest before making any substantial commitment of resources.”

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