The deadline to submit comments in response to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Implementation Team’s notice to establish the “Consumer Inquiry and Complaint Database” is less than two weeks away. 

Title X of the Dodd-Frank Act establishes the CFPB to enforce federal consumer financial laws through rulemaking, supervision, and enforcement authority.  Dodd-Frank grants the CFPB province over, among other federal statutes, the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, Fair Credit Reporting Act, and Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.  The CFPB will officially open for business on July 21, 2011.  In the meantime, the CFPB Implementation Team has been active in taking steps to ensure the bureau gets off the ground running, including with its notice to establish the Consumer Inquiry and Complaint Database. 

The Consumer Inquiry and Complaint Database will contain information concerning complaints or inquiries submitted directly to the CFPB and those submitted to other agencies and referred to the CFPB.  Specifically, the database will include (1) information about the individual or entity that is the subject of the complaint, (2) information about the individual or entity submitting the complaint, (3) correspondence and any documentation associated with the complaint, and (4) information about how complaints or inquiries were addressed.  The purpose of the database is to enable the CFPB to collect, respond to, and refer complaints or inquiries regarding consumer financial products or services.  However, information in the database may be disclosed in the course of civil discovery, litigation, or settlement; to Congress, law enforcement agencies, regulatory agencies, and self-regulatory agencies; and in aggregate form to the public for purposes of analytical and statistical reporting.  The database presents a number of privacy-related issues that will not be fully recognized until the CFPB commences operations. 

Comments regarding the database must be submitted by February 9, 2011.