The final rule implementing Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act is massive. There are a couple additional pieces of guidance that may offer relief to some institutions. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has provided a Filing Instructions Guide, a Small Business Lending rule: Data Points Chart, a Grace Period Policy Statement and a Statement on Enforcement and Supervisory Practices Relating to Small Business Lending Rule. Details follow.

Filing Instructions Guide – The 2024 Filing Instructions Guide (FIG) is a set of resources to help you file small business lending data with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) in 2025 covering the period from October 1, 2024 to December 31, 2024. The CFPB will publish an updated FIG each year.

Small Business Lending Rule: Data Points Chart – The 40-page Data Points Chart is intended to be used as a reference tool for data points required to be collected and reported under the small business lending rule (rule). Relevant regulation and commentary sections are provided for ease of reference. The chart also incorporates the Data Points section information found in the 2024 Small Business Lending Rule Filing Instructions Guide (2024 FIG)for each data point, summarizes what information to report when data points are not applicable under the rule, and highlights additional guidance in the rule related to reporting for data points.

Grace Period Policy Statement – The “Grace Period Policy Statement” is contained in Section VII (Page 649) of the final rule. It sets forth how the CFPB intends to exercise its supervisory and enforcement discretion following a covered financial institution’s initial compliance date. The Statement provides a grace period covering a financial institution’s first 12 months of data submission if the financial institution has had made good faith efforts to comply with the final rule.

Statement on Enforcement and Supervisory Practices – The final rule was also accompanied by a “Statement on Enforcement and Supervisory Practices Relating to Small Business Lending Rule under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act and Regulation B.”  In the Statement, the CFPB indicates that it intends to:

  • Use its enforcement and supervisory authorities to focus on compliance by covered financial institutions with the final rule’s prohibition against discouraging applicants from submitting responsive information.
  • Look at institutions’ response rates for data requested from applicants and, as appropriate, “consider how a lender’s response rates compare to financial institutions of a similar size, type, geographic reach, or other relevant factors….”
  • Look at irregularities in a particular response (such as high rates relative to similar institutions of a response indicating the applicant does not wish to provide the requested information) “because that could indicate steering, improper interference, or other potential discouragement or obstruction of applicants’ preferred responses.”

The Statement also describes the CFPB’s expectations for what institutions should be doing to identify and respond to potential indicia of discouragement.  The CFPB expects covered financial institutions to assess response rates not only on an institution level, but also on other levels, such as by division, location and loan officer.

Compliance Resource has scheduled a webinar entitled Section 1071 Final Rule: What You Need to Know Now for 2:00 p.m. EDT on April 11, 2023.