PJ Hoffman, regulatory affairs counsel for the National Association of Federal Credit Unions, urged the CFPB last week to avoid a “one-size-fits-all” approach to student lending without enabling credit unions “the flexibility to best serve their members.”
Hoffman said that while all credit unions place heavy emphasis on their members, each institution is different.
“Some credit unions have unique relationships with universities because of their field of membership that includes students interested in private student loans,” Hoffman said. “Other credit unions don’t have a large student population but may have a member with a son or daughter who is thinking about going to college.”
Hoffman pointed to March figures from the National Credit Union Administration that revealed total delinquency on private student loans through credit unions is at 1.46 percent, significantly lower than the national average of 5.4 percent.
“Unlike other financial institutions, credit unions are philosophically, structurally and financially incentivized like no other financial institution to be responsible to the individual needs of its members,” Hoffman said. “Credit unions work with their members to ensure they are in an appropriate product and have an interest in building a life-long financial relationship with that individual.”
Hoffman’s letter came one day in advance of the CFPB’s field hearing on student loans held at Miami Dade College in Florida.