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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The FEDS laid down the gauntlet

The FEDS have laid down the gauntlet, and its about time. Owning a skip company can be risky business if you don't insure your employees are in compliance at all times. This means not only the obvious things, pretexting, no breaking phone numbers, no threatening people, no harassment, no profanity, etc. This also means the things that have not been as obvious, and things I've never seen a client audit, but given the statement below, the lenders will likely start rethinking If you don't have software that monitors compliance, specifically the compliance of your employees and your vendors as it relates to how they communicate with the public, you will likely squirm a bit, or a lot, when the FED walks in your office and asks you to open up your Kimono. Many software's claim to monitor compliance, but if that software is not also your workflow software, how can it tell you when a call was placed to a person who the law says cant be called, how do you know what your people are doing when you let them go to Facebook, how do you really know what your vendor is doing if you cant fully audit their actions as you are not familiar with the software they work in so you have to take them at face value when they deny they did what your customer has accused them of doing. masterQueue addresses these areas and many more, and given what the Chief said yesterday, if my employees or my vendors were operating out of compliance, I'd be looking for a solution in a pro active manner instead of waiting for the FED to walk through my front door. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Chief Richard Codray stated yesterday: "Through our supervision team, we examine non bank providers of consumer financial products and services, many of them for the first time at the federal level. The enforcement team that I helped build can commence actions against market players who cheat consumers – and their competitors – by not following federal consumer financial laws. GOOD- and he did this last year by filing the largest suits against illegal debt collection activity in the history of the FED - and they got multi-million dollar judgments in every case. "Those who follow the law are placed at a competitive disadvantage in contrast to those who do not, and their reputations are harmed when they are lumped in with their competitors who engage in illegal activities. OMG- this is like when the State of Calif started licensing repossession activity, eventually putting an end to large scale illegal repossession activity. It's tough to compete when you know your competitors are not playing by the rules, but you dont want to rat them out as you'll sound like a whiner, but when you fire people for breaking the rules, or worse breaking the law, and they all end up at your competitors shop, you know they likely haven't changed their bad habits, but you wonder why doesn't the client seem to care? We'll maybe the client doesn't care, but now the FED seems to care. Good for the FED. Codray continues..."Our goal is to help the honest debt collectors do their jobs responsibly and see that the rest are either rehabilitated or run out of business once and for all. When this proposed rule becomes final, our supervision authority will then allow us to go on-site with debt collectors, examine their operations from the inside, and determine whether a collector is complying with the law. We will set forth our expectations through public examination procedures, encourage robust compliance programs, communicate expectations confidentially to the entity throughout the examination and rating process, and ensure appropriate corrective action where necessary. These supervisory efforts would cover more than 60 percent of market activities. By comprehensively assessing large collectors, as well as many of the bank creditors who originate the debt, supervision would allow us to understand and address the systemic problems posing risks to consumers. By proactive coordination among federal and state law enforcement, we can help Americans dig themselves out of the residue of this financial crisis, without being plagued by the indignity of illegal debt collection tactics." Good job to whomever set this agency up.

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