September 21, 2010 - The Obama administration designated July 21, 2011 as the date the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) will take over enforcement of federal consumer protection laws, including TILA and RESPA, that impact mortgage bankers. The announcement was included in a Federal Registry Notice.
Effective July 21, 2011, the CFPB will have full authority to prescribe rules or issue orders pursuant to any federal consumer financial law (as defined in the Dodd-Frank Act); officially receive staff transfers from the other agencies; and take over supervision responsibility of depository institutions with assets in excess of $10 billion. The Federal Register Notice also states that, prior to July 21, 2011, the CFPB will begin conducting research on consumer financial products and services, develop its nationwide consumer complaint response center, and begin to plan implementation of its risk-based supervision of non-depository covered persons. The CFPB is planning a roundtable discussion to begin the process of merging Truth-in-Lending (TILA) and Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) disclosures.
The implementation of the CFPB will usher in a new era in consumer finance regulation and enforcement. The broad CFPB authority will allow it to both write regulations and enforce those regulations in connection with consumer lending, including residental mortgage lending.
On September 17, 2010, President Obama appointed Elizabeth Warren as Assistant to the President and Special Adviser to the Secretary of the Treasury. Warren is expected to play a key role within the administration in organizing the CFPB. In annoucing Warren's new role, President Obama stated "[t]he Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will crack down on the abusive practices of unscrupulous mortgage lenders [and] reinforce the new credit card law we passed banning unfair rate hikes."
Read more about Warren's appointment: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/16/business/16consumer.html?_r=1&scp=2&sq=elizabeth%20warren&st=cse