On February 18, 2016, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) finalized a policy that creates a process for companies to apply for a statement from CFPB that purports to reduce regulatory uncertainty for a new product or service that offers the potential for significant consumer-friendly innovation. The policy was originally proposed in October 2014. The press release from the CFPB notes that the “new policy was created as part of CFPB’s Project Catalyst initiative and is intended to enhance regulatory compliance in specific circumstances where a product holds the promise for significant consumer benefit and where there may be uncertainty around how the product fits within an existing regulatory scheme. For example, the policy could be appropriate in a case where an innovative product is being developed that involves technology that did not exist and may not have been contemplated at the time existing regulations were adopted.” With regard to what institutions would receive from the CFPB in the form of a No-Action Letter, the CFPB indicates that such a letter “would indicate that [CFPB] staff reviewed the company’s application and have no present intention to recommend enforcement or supervisory action with respect to the particular aspects of the company’s product and under the specifically-identified provisions and applications of statutes or regulations that are the subject of the no-action letter.” (emphasis added)
The Final Policy statement has not been published in the Federal Register as of February 18, 2016, but it can be found at: http://files.consumerfinance.gov/f/201602_cfpb_no-action-letter-policy.pdf.