The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau wants your questions.
The CFPB has launched a pilot advisory opinion program that allows companies seeking to comply with its regulations to submit questions on areas of uncertainty.
The Bureau says it will then “select topics based on the program’s priorities and make the responses available to the public” and, if appropriate, “issue an advisory opinion based on its summary of the facts presented that would be applicable to other entities in situations with similar facts and circumstances.”
The opinions would help the public understand the agency’s rules, highlight regulations that are outdated, seek consistency of enforcement, promote fair competition, and to ensure markets for consumer financial products and services operate transparently, the agency said in a press release. The opinions would not be used on issues involving an ongoing investigation or enforcement action or are the subject of planned rulemaking.
The advisory opinions would be posted on the agency’s website and in the Federal Register.
Other federal agencies and rulemaking bodies offering advisory opinions include the Federal Trade Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s Staff Letters program. The practice of issuing advisory opinions is more common at the state level, as offered for public officials through the California Attorney General’s office and the Rhode Island Ethics Commission, or for lobbyists at the Massachusetts Secretary of State.
Requests for CFPB advisory opinions may be submitted via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.