UPDATED: Bureau updates FCRA model disclosures for credit freeze, fraud alert changes

Changes reflect added consumer rights under EGRRCPA

Model forms for disclosures required of consumer reporting agencies under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) are updated in an interim final rule issued Wednesday by the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (BCFP, formerly known as CFPB), and set to take effect Sept. 21.

Portion of “Summary of Consumer Rights” model form displayed in BCFP interim rule.

The interim final rule, also out for comment until Nov. 19, revises the BCFP’s Regulation V to reflect changes in Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requirements under the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (EGRRCPA). Under EGRRCPA, consumers have a right to a security freeze on their credit reports free of charge; additionally, consumers who may be victims of identity theft can have reporting agencies place an initial fraud alert in their files for at least one year (an increase from 90 days).

The BCFP is incorporating these changes into the model disclosures provided under Reg V: the Summary of Consumer Rights, a model disclosure explaining the consumer’s rights to obtain and dispute information on credit reports and to obtain credit scores; and the Summary of Consumer Identity Theft Rights, a model disclosure summarizing the consumer’s rights in seeking to remedy the effects of fraud or identity theft.

A summary of the interim final rule notes that a consumer reporting agency is required to provide a Summary of Consumer Rights whenever it makes a written disclosure of information from a consumer’s file or a credit score to the consumer. (The FCRA also includes requirements related to consumer report use by employers.) The reporting agency is also required to provide a Summary of Consumer Identity Theft Rights if a consumer contacts the agency “and expresses a belief that the consumer is a victim of fraud or identity theft involving credit, an electronic fund transfer, or an account or transaction at or with a financial institution or other creditor,” it states.

Interim Final Rule: Summaries of Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (Regulation V)