U.S. House of Representatives Financial Services Committee Passes Bills Relating to Debt Collection Practices

On November 14, the House Financial Services Committee passed the following bills which would amend the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and other consumer protection statutes and regulations. Next, the entire House of Representatives will consider the following bills:.

  • The Self-Employed Mortgage Access Act (H.R. 2445) would require the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to amend the Ability-to-Repay/Qualified Mortgage regulation concerning how lenders verify the income and debt of consumers.
  • The Ending Debt Collection Harassment Act of 2019 (H.R. 5021) proposes to prohibit debt collectors from contacting a consumer by email or text message without a consumer’s consent to be contacted electronically. The bill also prohibits the CFPB from issuing any rules that allow a debt collector to send unlimited email and text messages to a consumer.
  • The Small Business Fair Debt Collection Protection Act (H.R. 5013) proposes to expand the FDCPA’s protections to small business debt.
  • The Non-Judicial Foreclosure Debt Collection Clarification Act (H.R. 5001) would amend the FDCPA to extend the definition of debt collector to those enforcing security interests.
  • The Fair Debt Collection Practices for Servicemembers Act (H.R. 5003) seeks to add additional prohibitions to the FDCPA concerning servicemembers and their families.
  • The Stop Debt Collection Abuse Act (H.R. 4403) proposes to extend the FDCPA’s protections as it relates to debts owed to a federal agency, limits the fees debt collectors can charge, and clarifies that debt buyers are subject to the FDCPA.
  • The Debt Collection Practices Harmonization Act (H.R. 3948) proposes to expand the scope of the FDCPA to include municipal utility bills, tolls, traffic tickets, and court debts.
  • The Small Business Lending Fairness Act (H.R. 3490) proposes to restrict the use of confessions of judgment embedded in specific contracts.
  • An amendment to the United States Housing Act (H.R. 2398) proposes expanding eligibility for the Housing and Urban Development-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program.

Troutman Sanders will continue to monitor and report on the progress of these bills.