January 21, 2009

Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling Agencies (AICCCA) 16th Mid-Winter Conference

This event has already occurred.
Miami, FL
Jonathan L. Pompan moderated a lively panel discussion on "Less Than Full Balance DMPs and Other New Alternatives for Consumers" at the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling Agencies (AICCCA) 16th Mid-Winter Conference.  An increasing number of credit card borrowers cannot qualify for debt relief programs currently in existence that generally require full principal repayment pre-charge off. Lenders are hesitant to engage in less than full balance recovery plans due to regulatory and accounting requirements. Lenders generally offer programs to distressed borrowers that re-age debt and that reduce monthly payments, interest rates, and penalties -- but generally will not make reductions in principal due to regulatory and accounting impediments. While federal regulators (i.e., the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency) have, to date, been unwilling to make the regulatory accounting exception to permit less-than-full balance debt management plans to proceed, there is a compelling need at this time for a change in OCC policy. In the meantime, the federal bankruptcy code contemplates less than full balance repayment plans over sixty months for certain debtors; and there is a patchwork of interrelated state debt adjusting laws and other compliance requirements that credit counseling agencies have to manage. Navigate this confusing legal and policy maze and learn what the issues are to better position your credit counseling agency. Panel participants included one major lender representative and three diverse representatives from a cross-section of consumer credit counseling agencies on the front lines of helping consumers in financial distress.