New Remittance Rules Bring Clarity and More Consumer Protections

Statement by Self-Help (CRL Affiliate)


Center for Responsible Lending
October 28, 2013

Starting today, U.S. consumers sending money abroad will have more information on the fees and other terms of their remittance transfers, along with added protections against unfair or deceptive practices.  These changes come as a result of rules published by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

The World Bank projects that the global remittance market will top $700 billion by 2016.  The U.S. has more immigrants than anywhere else in the world, and fees on outbound remittances here total more than $2 billion each year, according to Javelin Research and Strategy.  

The new rules require remittance providers to inform consumers about the fees and exchange rate on any remittance, as well as how much money will be received and when it will be available.  The rules also provide protections on transfer refunds, cancellations, and error resolution.

Self-Help Federal Credit Union (SHFCU), which provides retail banking, check cashing, and remittance services for its members in California and Chicago, commends the CFPB for addressing the remittance transfer issue, which generally had not been covered by federal consumer protection laws.  Notably, the CFPB’s rules cover many kinds of money transfer providers, including money transmitters, banks, community banks, and credit unions. 

“CFPB demonstrated flexibility to ensure that smaller financial institutions such as ours can comply with the rule.  We’re glad CFPB’s rules let all responsible providers compete in terms of price and service,” said Steve Zuckerman, President of SHFCU.  “That translates into lower costs and increased protections for customers.” 

For more information, contact David Beck, Self-Help, 919-956-4495 or david.beck@self-help.org.

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About the Center for Responsible Lending

The Center for Responsible Lending is a nonprofit, nonpartisan research and policy organization dedicated to protecting homeownership and family wealth by working to eliminate abusive financial practices. CRL is affiliated with Self-Help, one of the nation's largest community development financial institutions.