01.04.2012 Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection Issues Interim Final Rule Transferring RESPA Regulations from the Department of Housing and Urban Development, as Required by Dodd-Frank


On Tuesday, December 20, 2011, the new Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (the “Bureau”) issued an interim final rule and a request for public comment in connection with the transfer of rulemaking authority for the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (“RESPA”) from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”) to the Bureau.  The interim final rule is effective December 30, 2011.  Comments must be received by February 21, 2012.


Title X of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (the “Act”) transferred rulemaking authority for several consumer protection laws to the Bureau.  The Bureau is currently in the process of republishing these transferred regulations to implement the transfer and to make such substantive changes to the existing regulations as may be required by the Act.


The notice published in the Federal Register of December 20, 2011 concerns HUD’s Regulation X, found at 24 CFR Part 3500.  RESPA generally requires accurate and complete disclosure of the nature and costs associated with the real estate settlement process, but also contains several substantive requirements, such as the elimination of kickbacks and certain referral fees.  Rulemaking authority for this law has now been transferred to the Bureau and is being republished as the Bureau’s Regulation X (12 CFR Part 1024).


The above interim rule does not impose any additional substantive regulatory requirements on persons subject to the existing HUD regulation. 


Those engaged in the above commercial practices who are regulated by HUD (and now the Bureau) and other interested persons may comment, and should do so if they think that this interim rule, or the specifics of the implementation of this interim rule as published in the notice, will have an adverse effect on their businesses.  According to the notice of proposed rulemaking, there are various methods for the submission of comments, including e-mail, hand delivery and US Mail.  Please see the notice in the Federal Register for this information.  Those commenting should reference Docket No. CFPB-2011-0030 or RIN 3170-AA06. 


If you have any questions about the information in this Alert, please contact Ed Harllee at