The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB or Bureau) issued its Debt Collection Notice of Proposed Rule (NPR) on May 7, 2019. The NPR exceeds 500 pages which encompassed not only the proposed rule but comments and analysis by the CFPB to support their proposals.
Part of the rule being finalized was the request for public comments from various parties including consumer advocate groups, creditor/first-party, and industry experts. The comment period was extended until September 18 where comments were collected to better understand the needs and impact when it comes to direct guidelines for the use of digital communication technologies.
All comments can be viewed and downloaded from www.regulations.gov using the docket number CFPB-2019-0022.
Among industry leaders are insideARM, ACA International, NCBA and RMAi providing comments as vendor partners in the accounts receivable industry. DAKCS felt it important to file our comments as well, which is why we filed a public comment in September displaying our opinions of the proposed rule as it pertains to the impact and benefits of our customers.
DAKCS Debt Collection NPR Comments
DAKCS Software has been providing services to the Accounts Receivables Management industry since 1983. DAKCS was created by collection agency owners in order to automate and manage communications with consumers regarding their financial obligations. Designing the system around communication with consumers permits DAKCS Software to see how critical the first contact is with the consumer in establishing trust and opening the door for further communication.
Over the past decade, we have seen the rise of email, text messaging and chat, to the point where digital communication is the preferred method for all consumers. Unfortunately, the lack of clear guidelines concerning electronic communications for the collection industry has severely limited its use. The Proposed Rule, when finalized, will finally open the door to more modern methods of communication. We are excited to see this change and look forward to supporting our clients with these new options.
Anticipating these changes and the movement to digital communications, DAKCS Software has developed the ability to send documents for signatures, payment requests, identification uploads, etc. in batches or on an individual basis. All workflows have an audit trail so our clients will know which actions will be seen as a successful “communication” with the consumer, and which will not.
Realizing that tracking consent for these types of communication will be vitally important to our clients and consumers, we have also integrated a consent management platform into our system. We believe the core digital communication platform we have developed will align our customers with the proposed rule very well and will assist in their compliance to the Rules once finalized.
The number of issues that should be clarified in the final rule are too numerous to mention here, but industry groups, including the ACA, RMAi, CRC and NCBA have been working on detailed comments for us as an industry. As members of the above groups, we strongly support their comments and respectfully request the CFPB to carefully consider the problems they enumerate.
Above all, however, we appreciate the CFPB’s approach to modernizing the FDCPA. You have spent a great deal of time and consideration and have talented and fair staff working on these issues.
Thank you for the consideration and fairness you have shown to the industry.
DAKCS Software Systems
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