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LAW & LEGISLATIVE

What's New At The Capitol

Winter 2019 - page 2


2020 CAC Membership Directory and Buyer’s Guide Now Available!

  • Features valuable CAC member contact information

  • Updated list of state Senators and Assemblymembers

  • CAC Bylaws

Collector's Ink

Fall 2020 Features:

  • President's Message

  • Legislative Advocate Update

  • General Counsel Update

Collector's Ink Online Archive

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Welcome to the California
Association of Collectors!

Updated Office & Workspace Guidance
May 18, 2020

CDPH and Cal/OSHA have put together an updated Guidance for those who cannot work from home.


BREAKING NEWS: SBA Loan Program Opens Friday, Apply Early!
April 1, 2020

Federal news updates:

U.S. Small Business Administration

The U.S. Small Business Administration posted additional guidance about the Paycheck Protection Program to its website, including a sample application. A fact sheet containing important information for borrowers was posted by the U.S. Department of Treasury.

Lenders will begin processing Paycheck Protection Program loan applications on Friday, April 3. Although the program will accept applications until June 30, 2020, most experts anticipate that the $349 billion fund will be exhausted quickly.

CLICK HERE to read the entire article, which also includes updates on the Federal Communications Commission and state guidance for Maine, Massachusetts and Tennessee.


With $349 Billion in Emergency Small Business Capital Cleared, SBA and Treasury Begin Unprecedented Public-Private Mobilization Effort to Distribute Funds
April 1, 2020

WASHINGTON – Following President Trump’s signing of the historic Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza and Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin today announced that the SBA and Treasury Department have initiated a robust mobilization effort of banks and other lending institutions to provide small businesses with the capital they need.

The CARES Act establishes a new $349 billion Paycheck Protection Program. The Program will provide much-needed relief to millions of small businesses so they can sustain their businesses and keep their workers employed.

This unprecedented public-private partnership is going to assist small businesses with accessing capital quickly. Our goal is to position lenders as the single point-of-contact for small businesses – the application, loan processing, and disbursement of funds will all be administered at the community level,” said Administrator Carranza. “Speed is the operative word; applications for the emergency capital can begin as early as this week, with lenders using their own systems and processes to make these loans. We remain committed to supporting our nation’s more than 30 million small businesses and their employees, so that they can continue to be the fuel for our nation’s economic engine.

CLICK HERE to read the entire article.


COVID-19: Illinois Releases New Guidance on Debt Collection Activity and Student Loan Assistance
March 31, 2020

The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation – Division of Financial Institutions announced new guidance to its regulated entities, including student loan servicers and collection agencies, encouraging debt collectors and debt buyers to work with consumers to accommodate hardships due to the COVID-19 crisis, including to suspend collection activity for a period of at least 60 days, according to a news release.

Additional guidance to licensed entities states although licensed collection agencies and debt buyers operating in Illinois are not listed as essential businesses under Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s executive stay-at-home order, non-essential businesses are allowed to continue operations consisting exclusively of employees or contractors performing activities at their own residences.

Thus, debt collection agencies seeking to work at a location other than their address of record, including remotely, are hereby directed to provide the department notice within 14 days of any address changes.

Student loan servicers licensed in Illinois are encouraged by the Division of Financial Institutions to “make prudent efforts to meet the financial needs of all student loan borrowers affected directly or indirectly by the COVID-19 pandemic” following passage of H.R. 748 (the CARES Act), which codifies additional relief for federal student loan borrowers who have loans held by the U.S. Department of Education.

CLICK HERE to read the entire article, which also has some information on North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.


The Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act
March 30, 2020

A new guide has been released about the CARES Act.

The programs and initiatives in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act that was just passed by Congress are intended to assist business owners with whatever needs they have right now. When implemented, there will be many new resources available for small businesses, as well as certain non-profits and other employers. This guide provides information about the major programs and initiatives that will soon be available from the Small Business Administration (SBA) to address these needs, as well as some additional tax provisions that are outside the scope of SBA.

CLICK HERE to read the Guide.


Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) FAQ
March 27, 2020

This article addresses questions employers are asking about four sections of the FFCRA. (Updated March 24, 2020.)

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA; "The Act") was signed into law on March 18, 2020, and generally requires employers with fewer than 500 employees to provide a certain amount of paid sick and paid leave to employees affected by COVID-19, and provides affected employers with a corresponding employment tax credit. In addition, the FFRCA temporarily expands Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) requirements to offer protected leave related to the coronavirus.

CLICK HERE to read the FFCRA FAQ.


COVID:19 Federal and State Update: The Latest from D.C. and the States
March 27, 2020

ACA International continues to monitor state and city updates and remains available as a resource for members during this difficult time of fast-moving and often ambiguous regulatory change. In addition, our team has maintained regular direct and indirect communications with state and federal regulators to receive up-to-the-minute guidance on industry-relevant orders and emergency regulations, which we have been and will continue to parse and report on at regular intervals.

For additional daily updates, members may join ACA’s advocacy team including Vice President and Senior Counsel of Federal Advocacy Leah Dempsey, Corporate Counsel Colin Winkler and Vice President, State Government and Unit Affairs Andy Madden for a Daily Huddle at 11 a.m., Central Standard Time weekdays. More information including state compliance, federal advocacy and ACA online education is also available on the ACA News COVID-19 Updates webpage.

CLICK HERE to read the entire article.


BREAKING NEWS: U.S. Senate Reaches Agreement on Coronavirus Aid Bill with Relief for Small Businesses
March 26, 2020

The U.S. Senate agreed on the package for the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). It is expected to pass this week.

The final agreement DOES NOT include the harmful directives to the accounts receivable management (ARM) industry that would have crushed businesses and their ability to operate. There are also several provisions aimed at helping small businesses, including $350 billion in aid and support for the community financial institutions and hospitals that ACA International members serve. ACA will provide more detailed information about these proposals in coming days. We will also provide updates as the U.S. House of Representatives determines the process for voting on the agreed-to package.

CLICK HERE to read the entire article.


COVID-19: Several States Toll Statutes of Limitations on Legal Actions | ED Suspends Student Debt Collection
March 25, 2020

A number of states have tolled the statutes of limitations on legal actions in response to COVID-19. These states include: Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, New York, Oklahoma, Texas, Virginia and Connecticut. See the link below to read more on this.

In regards to student debt collection: First, New York temporarily suspended the collection of certain debts owed to the state during the pendency of the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, it appears that the Department of Education (ED) has done the same.

CLICK HERE to read more on these issues.


Agencies Provide Additional Information to Encourage Financial Institutions to Work with Borrowers Affected by COVID-19
March 24, 2020

The FDIC, along with the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Conference of State Bank Supervisors, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, National Credit Union Administration and Office of the Comptroller of the Currency have released a joint press release for immediate release:

The federal financial institution regulatory agencies and the state banking regulators issued an interagency statement encouraging financial institutions to work constructively with borrowers affected by COVID-19 and providing additional information regarding loan modifications.

The agencies encourage financial institutions to work with borrowers, will not criticize institutions for doing so in a safe and sound manner, and will not direct supervised institutions to automatically categorize loan modifications as troubled debt restructurings (TDRs). The joint statement also provides supervisory views on past-due and nonaccrual regulatory reporting of loan modification programs.

The agencies view prudent loan modification programs offered to financial institution customers affected by COVID-19 as positive and proactive actions that can manage or mitigate adverse impacts on borrowers, and lead to improved loan performance and reduced credit risk.

The statement reminds institutions that not all modifications of loan terms result in a TDR. Short-term modifications made on a good faith basis in response to COVID-19 to borrowers who were current prior to any relief are not TDRs. This includes short-term -- for example, six months -- modifications such as payment deferrals, fee waivers, extensions of repayment terms, or other delays in payment that are insignificant.

The agencies' examiners will exercise judgment in reviewing loan modifications, including TDRs, and will not automatically adversely risk rate credits that are affected, including those considered TDRs. Regardless of whether modifications are considered TDRs or are adversely classified, agency examiners will not criticize prudent efforts to modify terms on existing loans for affected customers.

CLICK HERE to read the Interagency Statement
CLICK HERE to read the Joint Press Release


A Message from ACA President, Roger Weiss
March 23, 2020

TO: U.S. GOVERNORS, STATE ATTORNEYS GENERAL, STATE LEGISLATIVE LEADERS:

...On a daily basis, ACA is hearing from our members about reports of heartfelt thanks from consumers for providing support, education, and pertinent information to assist them in resolving their accounts. ACA members, as they always have throughout their history, remain committed to consumers and believe that their role in the financial services marketplace is essential for consumers to have information they need. ACA members provide solutions through problem solving that help create accommodations to assuage consumers during difficult times. In this regard, ACA International promotes a “Collectors Pledge,” which all members sign, that states:

I believe every person has worth as an individual.
I believe every person should be treated with dignity and respect.
I will make it my responsibility to help consumers find ways to pay their just debts.
I commit to honoring this pledge.

Professional debt collectors recognize that from time to time consumers may encounter disruptions and financial challenges in their lives, and ACA members have long-established hardship programs to provide solutions to these problems. While the current crisis is extraordinary, we know that professional debt collectors are the best trained and equipped personnel to offer consolation, suggestions, and sources of aid. ACA members are adept at working through hardship arrangements with consumers to establish resolutions tailored to consumers’ unique situation...

CLICK HERE to read Roger Weiss' entire message from ACA International.


ACA International has released a NEWS UPDATE:
March 20, 2020

ACA International continues to monitor state and city updates and remains available as a resource for members during this difficult time of fast-moving and often ambiguous regulatory change. In addition, our team has maintained regular direct and indirect communications with state and federal regulators to receive up-to-the-minute guidance on industry-relevant orders and emergency regulations, which we have been and will continue to parse and report on at regular intervals.

CLICK HERE to read the COVID-19 Business Guidance from ACA International.


Important message from Andy Madden, VP, Government & State Affairs for ACA International:
March 20, 2020

Hello Unit Leaders,
While I have spoken with many of you directly over the last 24-48 hours, I wanted to reach out to everyone with a couple of updates and suggestions.

Letter to Share with Lobbyist
Attached please find a letter that I recommend you share with your lobbying/legislative team. The letter highlights ACA concerns over efforts to halt all debt collection activities during this difficult time. This letter could be useful as similar efforts arise in your state.

State Updates - New Webpage - Request for Shared Information
I wanted to make you aware of a new state update button “States Respond to COVID-19” front and center on the ACA Website where members can get updates on changes for licensee in their state. This is constantly being updated and things are moving quickly. If you receive updates (as a licensee you will likely receive these bulletins first) please pass them along to me and I will be sure we get the most up to date information to all members. Send to madden@acainternational.org.

COVID-19 ARM Industry Resource
Additionally, there is a COVID-19 What ARM Pros Need to Know on the ACA Homepage (just to the left of the state update button) which is a good resource for guidance on compliance, licensing and operations management during this time.

Thank you for all you do for ACA and the industry.

Best,

Andy Madden, VP, Government & State Affairs
ACA International
509 2nd Street, N.E., Washington, DC 20002
E-mail: madden@acainternational.org


The California Association of Collectors (CAC) is the first organized association of collection professionals in the country and the founding unit of ACA International, the Association of Credit and Collection Professionals. As the largest state unit of credit and collection professionals CAC provides a platform for its members to unite and better the collection industry in California.

Read more about who we are here.

Interested in joining? Click here to read about our various membership options and many benefits.


 

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One Capitol Mall, Suite 800
Sacramento, CA 95814
Tel: (916) 929-2125
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