Consumer Financial Protection Bureau fighting growing pains

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will officially begin on July 21, taking over the regulation of consumer financial products and services from banking and other federal regulators.

In addition, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will also be given power over certain non-bank entities that have previous not faced federal regulation, including payday lenders, debt collectors, check cashers, credit reporting agencies and private student loan companies, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

The bureau, however, still lacks a permanent director and it is facing a loss of funding in an attempt by politicians in Congress to reduce its power.

The director, when appointed by the president and confirmed by Congress, will serve a five year term. President Barack Obama has named Harvard Law School professor Elizabeth Warren as the interim head of the bureau but has not named a permanent head, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

More than 200 staffers have already been hired by the bureau and begun work on key mandates, including the replacement of two disclosure documents given to borrowers applying for a mortgage. Those documents – the Truth in Lending form and the Good Faith Estimate – will be replaced with a single, easily readable document.

Additionally, a toll-free hotline and website have been set up to allow citizens to lodge complaints about financial products and services.

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