At NAFCU, my department focuses on the latest and most challenging regulatory compliance issues facing credit unions today. We are constantly in contact with compliance officers and other credit union staff who have to deal with a continuing barrage of new and proposed rules, and the updates that invariably follow. Between the shifting deadlines and multiple regulatory agencies overseeing our industry, it can be a lot to keep track of for credit unions of all sizes.
For example, in 2015 alone, we have seen significant changes in the Military Lending Act’s rules, NCUA’s flood insurance provisions, and CFPB finalized an overhaul of its Home Mortgage Disclosure Act rules. That’s in addition to evergreen compliance challenges such as CFPB’s mortgage and lending regulations, complex rules on advertising and the Bank Secrecy Act.
Compliance is a growing profession due in large part to the ever-growing regulatory burden. Outside of the Bank Secrecy Act, there is no formal requirement to employ compliance officers. However, many credit unions are finding that managing compliance risk is difficult without staff specifically responsible for compliance within their department. Other credit unions are moving toward centralized compliance programs with full-time staff overseeing compliance and other risk management functions.
Our team works with many compliance officers every day and NAFCU is always on the lookout for regulation to come. While 2015 was a busy year from a regulatory implementation perspective, NAFCU expects 2016 to be an equally active rulemaking year for the regulators. In terms of CFPB, the bureau is poised to finalize substantial amendments to its mortgage servicing rules and to issue new rules for prepaid cards. Meanwhile, NCUA is set to finalize its member business lending rule and potentially its field-of-membership rule.
It’s a lot to keep track of. NAFCU’s regulatory compliance team is available to answer questions – and will respond within about one business day – and we try to highlight hot topics and new regulations through our various publications, including the Compliance Blog, the Compliance Monitor, and the BSA Blast. We are set to issue a new compliance manual in 2016 that is designed to assist credit union compliance officers with day-to-day needs and includes links to many resources and guidance materials.
Sometimes, though, it is easier to learn and digest these issues face-to-face. Our team is already planning our next Regulatory Compliance School program, set for March 14-18 in Arlington, Va. We’ll be discussing compliance challenges ranging from regulation of share accounts, how to navigate mortgage regulations, NCUA’s field-of-membership requirements and cybersecurity. School also offers credits to earn or maintain your NAFCU Certified Compliance Officer (NCCO) or CPA designations. Regulatory Compliance School is a great opportunity to learn or review the basics of compliance, drill down on specifics that credit unions need to know and network with others. I hope to see you in March!