A rule published today by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) established that beginning on January 2, 2013, the CFPB will be the first federal institution ever to supervise the larger consumer debt collectors, according to a press release from the bureau. Any firms engaging in three main types of debt collection with more than $10 million in “annual receipts from consumer debt collection activities” — which is approximately 175 debt collectors and 60 percent of the industry’s annual receipts — will be under the jurisdiction of the bureau, the release said.

In addition to creating a debt collection question and answer section for its Ask CFPB database, the bureau also released a field guide to help examiners “ensure that companies and banks engaging in debt collection are following the law,” the release said. This field guide will help examiners evaluate, among other things, whether debt collectors provide required disclosures and accurate information; have a complaint and dispute resolution process; and communicate civilly and honestly with consumers, the release said.

For more, read the press release. Check back for a more comprehensive analysis of the bureau’s procedures regarding the supervision of debt collectors.