CFPB initiates review of credit card late fees

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking to reopen CARD Act rules that regulate how much financial firms can charge in credit card late fees.

CFPB Notice: Issued under the Consumer Financial Protection Act, the CFPB’s notice requests information about:

  • The Federal Reserve Board’s 2010 immunity provision for excessive late fees that allows credit card companies to escape enforcement scrutiny.

  • Whether credit card late fees are “reasonable and proportional.”

  • Card issuers’ revenue and expenses, the potential deterrent effect of late fees, and the role late fees play in credit card companies’ profitability.

Penalty Pushback: The CFPB said the move is its first step toward addressing credit card company penalty policies that cost consumers $12 billion per year.

‘Junk Fee’ Effort: The CFPB is targeting “junk fees”—including overdraft and non-sufficient-funds fees—a characterization ICBA has rejected in a comment letter to the bureau.