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March 2024 Regulatory Brief: Junk Fees, BSA, and CRA

2 min read
Mar 7, 2024

Looking for information about the latest regulatory proposals, final rules, lawsuits, and trends? You’ve come to the right place.  

Each month Ncontracts’ team of regulatory compliance experts goes in-depth on the month’s top compliance stories, giving you insights into regulatory change, concerns, and what’s coming down the road. 

This month features the latest on junk fees, Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering (BSA/AML) trends, and the Community Reinvestment Act, among other hot topics. Read on for a quick overview or watch the Regulatory Brief podcast for an in-depth discussion. You can also log into Ncontracts' compliance management system (Ncomply) for updates and action plans.


“Junk Fee” Updates

Junk fees were once again a hot topic in February. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released a report that found that large banks charge higher credit card interest rates than small banks and credit unions.  

Meanwhile, the California Attorney General warned small banks and credit unions that overdraft and returned deposit items fees may violate the state's Unfair Competition Law (UCL) and federal law in the Consumer Financial Protection Act (CFPA).

Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering (BSA/AML)

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issued a financial trend analysis highlighting an increase in BSA reporting involving the use of convertible virtual currency for sexually exploiting children online and human trafficking. It asks financial institutions to keep providing BSA reports to help law enforcement investigate these crimes.

Community Reinvestment Act

The American Bankers Association (ABA), U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and five other associations sued to vacate the Community Reinvestment Act, arguing that the FDIC, OCC, and Federal Reserve for exceeding their statutory authority and violated the Administrative Procedure Act by including lending beyond a bank’s geographic footprint.

Mortgage Lending

The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) released a Statement on Exam Principles reminding examiners to be on the lookout for instances or patterns of discrimination in valuation practices. Examiners are also instructed to assess institutions’ compliance management systems and risk management practices for identifying and mitigating potential discrimination or bias in residential property valuation practices. 

The operators of a mortgage relief scam, Home Matters USA, have been banned from the telemarketing and debt relief business and must pay $19 million in fines in a Fegderal Trade Commission and California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation.

HUD issued a final rule updating branch office registration requirements.

OCC issues two proposals

The OCC issued a proposed rule that would make the agency’s review of mergers between national banks and federal savings associations more transparent. The agency also issued a proposed rule that would expedite Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests and create an appeals process when requests are denied. 

For more regulatory compliance insights, including changes to the CFPB appeals process, NCUA changes to the MDI Preservation Program, and the latest nonbank entity to be supervised by the CFPB, listen to the Ncast.

Want to know more about 2024 Regulatory Expectations?

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