The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) was established by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. The CFPB was tasked with overseeing that the federal financial laws that were implemented specifically to protect consumers – people who keep their money in banks and credit unions, use credit cards, and rely on loans to buy homes or pay for college, among other things.
The Bureau is responsible with making sure consumers understand the fine print that explains the risks involved in using these products and services, and it ensures that the banks, credit unions, and other financial companies that provide these products and services follow the rules.
The 2008 U.S. subprime mortgage crisis was caused by a series of events and conditions that led to a record number of foreclosures and massive devaluing of the U.S. housing market, followed by financial crisis and subsequent recession. The Consumer Financial Bureau implemented rule changes to ensure that these events and conditions do not happen again. The CFPB rules now require that mortgage servicers such as AmeriCU provide you with more information on your mortgage. These new rules also provide tools to assist you, should you have trouble making your mortgage payment as well as protection from wrongful actions taken by mortgage servicers. A mortgage servicer must now provide consumers with a written mortgage statement each billing cycle showing the following:
- What you currently owe on the property, and how much, if any, will be applied to the principal, interest, and escrow.
- Any payments made since the last statement generated.
- How previous payments were applied.
- Transaction history, to include any fees or charges applied to your account.
- Late payment information (only if you are past due on your payments).
- How to contact your mortgage servicer.
- How to contact a housing counselor should you need assistance.
Therefore, effective January 2014, AmeriCU discontinued issuing coupon books for mortgage and home equity loan payments. Instead, AmeriCU either sends a monthly eStatement or paper statement (depending on which delivery method you have chosen) to all members with mortgage and home equity loans which will include a payment coupon. If you have already set up an automatic recurring payment method (e.g., automatic transfer of funds or payroll distribution from an AmeriCU account, an ACH (Automated Clearing House) origination payment from another financial institution, or a bill payment from another financial institution) you may disregard the payment coupon.
If you have not already set up an automatic recurring payment method, you can visit our new BIG BLUE kiosks 24 hours a day, seven days a week, or your local AmeriCU financial center (during normal business hours) to make a loan payment in person. Or, if you wish to mail a payment, please detach or print the coupon and include it with your check to ensure that your payment is credited to the proper account.
Why do we need a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau?
Prior to the establishment of CFPB, seven different Federal agencies were responsible for countless aspects of consumer financial protection. No single agency had effective tools to set the rules or manage the whole market, and that is part of what led to an economic crash of grand proportions.
Moving forward, CFPB will be the lone, consumer-focused regulating authority, combining the existing authorities spread throughout the Federal government under one roof. For the first time in history, this means that the Federal government will be able to regulate the actions of independent payday lenders, private mortgage lenders and servicers, debt collectors, credit reporting agencies, and private student loan companies.