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CFPB to police some remittances

By Marcie Geffner ·
Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Posted: 2 pm ET

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has proposed a rule that would allow it to supervise certain nonbank companies that offer international money transfers.

The rule is intended to bring new oversight to these companies and ensure they adhere to new disclosure requirements, error correction procedures and other consumer protections imposed as of October 2013.

In a statement, CFPB Director Richard Cordray said the rule would help the federal agency make sure consumers get these and other protections.

U.S. consumers send funds abroad to assist family or friends, purchase products or for other reasons. The cost of sending funds can be complex due to fees, taxes and currency exchange rates, the CFPB said.

CFPB examiners already have the authority to assess compliance by the largest banks and credit unions. The proposed rule, authorized by the Dodd-Frank Act, would also subject nonbank companies that complete more than 1 million international money transfers annually to CFPB supervisory authority. The agency estimates that the rule would bring new oversight to about 25 of the largest providers in the market.

The new rules require remittance transfer companies to disclose the exchange rate, fees, amount of money that will be delivered abroad and when the money will be available.

Consumers typically get at least 30 minutes after payment to cancel a remittance if it hasn't yet been received and get a refund, regardless of the reason for the cancellation.

Remittance transfer companies also must generally investigate and correct certain errors if they're notified by the consumer within 180 days.

Companies that provide remittance transfers also may be responsible for mistakes made by their agents.

Are you affected by these new rules?

Follow me on Twitter: @marciegeff.

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1 Comment
May 04, 2014 at 12:42 pm

I use PayPal (no real choice for some vendors) so yes, I'm likely going to be effected. Even if both me and the person I'm paying/paid by are outside of CFPB's direct jurisdiction, the company will have to comply since they operate in practically every country.