When the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) releases its prepaid card rulemaking proposal, you may be on vacation.  In response to a question from Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) about the status of the rulemaking during a hearing before the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, Director Richard Cordray said that issuing the long-awaited Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) has been postponed until the end of the summer.  In releasing its Spring rulemaking agenda last month the Bureau had indicated that the proposal was still scheduled to be issued in June.

In the hearing this week, Cordray noted that there were no particular problems causing the delay, just that the Bureau was trying to work through the challenging  issues relevant to this rulemaking, which he also called “very high priority.”  He commented that prepaid cards are in a market where there is “no consumer protection”, “billions and billions of dollars” are loaded onto them and the market is growing.

The CFPB first issued an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on General Purpose Reloadable (GPR) cards more than two years ago. Anticipation for the NPRM, which may differ in scope from the ANPR, has been mounting since then.  This spring the CFPB reported that it had tested potential prepaid card disclosures that are expected to be part of the NPRM in some form.

Be on the lookout for a Payments Team analysis of the NPRM after it is released.