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CFPB to hold supervised banks and non-banks responsible for service provider violations

CFPB to hold supervised banks and non-banks responsible for service provider violations

Posted on 04/24/2012 at 12:30 PM by The Newsroom

On April 13, 2012, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) issued a bulletin advising of its expectations for oversight of business relationships with service providers, as defined in Section 1002(26) of the Dodd-Frank Act.  Banks and non-banks often hire service providers to handle customer service issues, operate call centers, handle data, and process credit cards.  The CFPB advised that it expects banks and non-banks to “have an effective process for managing the risks of service provider relationships.”  The following steps were advised: 
  • Conducting thorough due diligence to verify that the service provider understands and is capable of complying with federal consumer financial protection laws;
  • Requesting and reviewing the service provider’s policies and procedures, training procedures, and internal controls to ensure there is proper internal oversight of its employees and agents;
  • Clearly setting forth expectations for the service provider regarding compliance and consequences and penalties for non-compliance;
  • Establishing internal controls by banks and non-banks to monitor the service provider to ensure compliance; and
  • Taking prompt action in the event of non-compliance by the service provider.
Any agreements with a service provider should be carefully reviewed to ensure that banks and non-banks can hold the service provider accountable for its non-compliance, as well as to indemnify the bank or non-bank for the service provider’s misdeeds.

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