February 16, 2012

Clarity needed on CFPB treatment of privileged information, Berger says

Feb. 16, 2012 – NAFCU is urging the House Financial Services Committee's bipartisan support and approval of H.R. 4014, a bill introduced by Rep. Bill Huizenga, R-Mich., to ensure privileged information provided by a financial institution to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is kept confidential.

"It is critical that this type of privacy protection from third parties, which currently exists between credit unions and the National Credit Union Administration, is clearly spelled out in the law with respect to the CFPB," wrote Dan Berger, NAFCU's executive vice president of government affairs, in a letter delivered in advance of today's mark-up of the bill.

Writing committee Chairman Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., and Ranking Member Barney Frank, D-Mass., Berger said failure to ensure the law is clear on the treatment of privileged information could lead to disclosures that may expose institutions to frivolous lawsuits. "NAFCU believes having clarity in the statute and accompanying Committee report could also help ensure that credit unions will have a greater comfort level in providing requested information," he wrote.

He said the bill "should ensure that this privilege is maintained for any information already shared with the CFPB."

H.R. 4014, which would amend the Federal Deposit Insurance Act, was introduced Monday. It's cosponsored by Bachus and Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va.