CFPB Warns Servicers: Prepare to Assist Customers Exiting Forbearance

In a compliance bulletin issued today, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau called on mortgage servicers to “take all necessary steps now”—including ensuring adequate staffing and resources—to be prepared to work with customers exiting COVID-19 forbearance programs this fall.

The CPFP said it will “closely monitor” servicers’ efforts as they engage with borrowers, respond to requests and process loss mitigation applications. Specifically, the bureau said servicers should proactively contact borrowers in forbearance before the end of the forbearance period; work with borrowers to provide and secure information and documentation; ensure they are serving borrowers with limited English proficiency in compliance with ECOA and other laws; evaluate income fairly in accordance with Regulation B; handle inquiries promptly; and comply with foreclosure restrictions in Regulation X and other federal and state restrictions to prevent avoidable foreclosures.

The bureau added that it will continue to evaluate servicer activity consistent with an April 3, 2020, joint statement providing flexibility on certain timing requirements related to the mortgage servicing rules.