Federal Regulators Provide Guidance on Qualified Mortgage Fair Lending Risks

by Sabrina I. Pacifici on October 22, 2013

News release: “Five federal regulatory agencies today issued a statement to address industry questions about fair lending risks associated with offering only Qualified Mortgages. Creditors have asked for clarity regarding whether the disparate impact doctrine of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) and its implementing regulation, Regulation B, allows them to originate only Qualified Mortgages. For the reasons described in the statement, the five agencies do not anticipate that a creditor’s decision to offer only Qualified Mortgages would, absent other factors, elevate a supervised institution’s fair lending risk. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Ability-to-Repay Rule implements provisions of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act that require creditors to make a reasonable, good faith determination that a consumer has the ability to repay a mortgage loan before extending credit to the consumer. Lenders are presumed to have complied with the Ability-to-Repay Rule if they issue Qualified Mortgages, which must satisfy requirements that prohibit or limit risky features that harmed consumers in the recent crisis.”

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