On April 29, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB or Bureau) released Spanish language translations for certain model and sample forms included in the Prepaid Rule in Regulation E and for certain adverse action model and sample notices included in Regulation B.

The Bureau also used the announcement as an “opportunity to remind financial institutions of their obligation to serve the communities where they do business, including communities with limited English proficiency.” Many financial institutions looking for safe harbor language often rely on translations provided by regulators to bridge the opportunity gap between non-English-speaking communities and avenues for credit.

The ECOA model and sample forms in Spanish include (links to the Spanish versions):

  1. C-1: Notice of Action Taken and Statement of Reasons – Adverse Action based on outside source other than CRA
  2. C-2: Notice of Action Taken and Statement of Reasons
  3. C-3: Notice of Action Taken – Credit Score
  4. C-4: Notice of Action Taken – Counteroffer
  5. C-5: Disclosure of Right to Request Specific Reason for Credit Denial
  6. C-6: Notice of Incomplete Application
  7. C-7: Notice of Action Taken – Business Credit
  8. C-8: Disclosure of Right to Request Specific Reason for Credit Denial – Business Credit

The prepaid model forms and samples in Spanish include (links to the Spanish version):

  1. Model Form A-10(a): Short Form Disclosures for Government Benefit Accounts
  2. Model Form A-10(b): Short Form Disclosures for Payroll Card Accounts
  3. Model Form A-10(c): Short Form Disclosures for Prepaid Accounts, Example 1
  4. Model Form A-10(d): Short Form Disclosures for Prepaid Accounts, Example 2
  5. Model Form A-10(e): Short Form Disclosures for Prepaid Accounts with Multiple Service Plans
  6. Sample Form A-10(f): Long-Form Disclosures for Prepaid Accounts

While financial institutions are not statutorily required to use these Spanish-language forms, those wishing to provide translated versions of these documents will likely gravitate to the model forms.

While we find the model forms interesting, we find even more interesting the Bureau’s statement about financial institutions’ “obligation” to serve customers with limited English proficiency. The Bureau’s latest official guidance on LEP consumers — the January 2021 “Statement Regarding the Provision of Financial Products and Services to Consumers with Limited English Proficiency” — mentioned no such “obligation,” but rather spoke in permissive terms about financial institutions that might wish to provide in-language services in non-English languages. It appears to us that this permissive approach is shifting toward a more mandatory one, and we view the “obligation” language in the Bureau’s announcement as further evidence of this shift.

Print:
Email this postTweet this postLike this postShare this post on LinkedIn
Photo of Chris Willis Chris Willis

Chris is the co-leader of the Consumer Financial Services Regulatory practice at the firm. He advises financial services institutions facing state and federal government investigations and examinations, counseling them on compliance issues including UDAP/UDAAP, credit reporting, debt collection, and fair lending, and defending…

Chris is the co-leader of the Consumer Financial Services Regulatory practice at the firm. He advises financial services institutions facing state and federal government investigations and examinations, counseling them on compliance issues including UDAP/UDAAP, credit reporting, debt collection, and fair lending, and defending them in individual and class action lawsuits brought by consumers and enforcement actions brought by government agencies.

Chris also leverages insights from his litigation and enforcement experience to help clients design new products and processes, including machine learning marketing, fraud prevention and underwriting models, product structure, advertising, online application flows, underwriting, and collection and loss mitigation strategies.

Chris brings a highly practical focus to his legal advice, informed by balancing a deep understanding of the business of consumer finance and the practical priorities of federal and state regulatory agencies.

Chris speaks frequently at conferences across the country on consumer financial services law and has been featured in numerous articles in publications such as the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the Washington PostAmerican BankerNational Law JournalBNA Bloomberg, and Bank Safety and Soundness Advisor.

Photo of Stefanie Jackman Stefanie Jackman

Stefanie devotes her practice to assisting financial services institutions facing state and federal government investigations and examinations, counseling them on complex compliance issues, as well as defending them in individual and class action lawsuits. Stefanie represents clients across the financial services industry, including…

Stefanie devotes her practice to assisting financial services institutions facing state and federal government investigations and examinations, counseling them on complex compliance issues, as well as defending them in individual and class action lawsuits. Stefanie represents clients across the financial services industry, including banks and nonbanks, mortgage banking lenders and servicers, debt collectors and buyers, third-party service providers, health care and medical revenue cycle service providers, credit and prepaid card companies, auto lenders, and fintechs. She regularly advises her clients on issues arising under an array of federal and state consumer financial laws, including UDAP/UDAAP statutes, the FDCPA, FCRA, TCPA, EFTA, SCRA, and TILA.

In addition to her litigation and government investigations work, Stefanie focuses a significant portion of her practice on providing compliance-related advice to her clients. She regularly counsels clients on conducting compliance assessments relating to their debt collection, credit reporting and dispute resolution processes, fair lending and underwriting, and vendor oversight, as well as the functionality of their overall compliance management system. Stefanie also brings her litigation and enforcement experience to bear in assisting clients in designing new products and processes, including product structuring, advertising, online application flows, underwriting, and servicing-related strategies.

Photo of Jason Cover Jason Cover

Jason’s practice focuses on federal and state consumer lending and payments laws, including those that apply to installment loans, vehicle-secured loans, lines of credit, unsecured loans, credit cards, point-of-sale finance, and timeshare/vacation finance.

He counsels providers of consumer financial services, including banks, licensed…

Jason’s practice focuses on federal and state consumer lending and payments laws, including those that apply to installment loans, vehicle-secured loans, lines of credit, unsecured loans, credit cards, point-of-sale finance, and timeshare/vacation finance.

He counsels providers of consumer financial services, including banks, licensed lenders, and fintech providers, on regulatory compliance matters and government supervisory and enforcement matters.

Jason regularly provides guidance on electronic payments and payment network rules; electronic contracting and mobile commerce; online banking; retail installment sales; preparing for examinations by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB); responding to CFPB supervisory requests (including so-called PARR letters); Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code; lease-purchase transactions and consumer protection laws, such as the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), Truth in Lending Act (TILA), Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA), Electronic Funds Transfer Act (EFTA), Electronic Signatures in Global, and National Commerce Act (E-SIGN); UDAAP statutes prohibiting unfair, deceptive, and abusive acts and practices; and the CFPB’s Rule on Payday, Vehicle Title, and Certain High-Cost installment Loans (Payday Rule).

He also routinely counsels clients on issues related to online small business lending, electronic consents, contracts and disclosures, and recurring payment methods.

Earlier in his career, Jason served as lead in-house counsel to a premier consumer financial services company where he advised on an array of regulatory, legal, and compliance issues.