CFPB Released Annual FCRA Disclosure Rule

November 28, 2023

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently released its annual disclosure rule. This rule specifies the maximum amount a consumer reporting agency (CRA) may charge customers for the disclosure under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). The new charge allowed by the FCRA will be $15.50, a dollar more than in 2023.

The Process

According to the FCRA, CRAs must give consumers access to all the information a CRA has about them in their files. Section 612(a) also requires CRAs nationwide to provide one free annual consumer report upon a consumer’s request. This requirement applies to the three major credit reporting agencies and national specialty consumer reporting agencies. Furthermore, it limits how much a CRA can charge for file disclosures for people who do not qualify for a free report.

The CFPB calculates the maximum amount that CRAs may charge every year. According to the FCRA, “the charge shall not exceed $8.00 and shall be indicated to the consumer before making the disclosure. Section 612(f)(2) of the FCRA states that the Bureau shall increase the $8.00 maximum amount on January 1 of each year, based proportionally on changes in the Consumer Price Index, with fractional changes rounded to the nearest fifty cents.” The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a general index that covers urban customers and items.

For this year’s disclosure, the CFPB took the base amount of $8.00 and increased it based on the CPI-U’s percentage increase from 1997 to 2023: 90.936%. Thus, the new charge for consumer reports became $15.27. However, the CFPB rounds fractional numbers to the nearest $0.50 increment. As such, the final amount became $15.50.

Past Adjustments

On September 30, 1997, Section 612 (a) took effect and required the CFPB to start its percentage analysis with the year 1997. Since then, the Bureau has made adjustments accordingly on the following dates: 

  • April 3, 2012, 
  • December 18, 2012, 
  • December 30, 2013, 
  • December 15, 2014, 
  • November 20, 2015, 
  • November 18, 2016, 
  • November 16, 2017, 
  • December 31, 2018, 
  • November 27, 2019, 
  • December 23, 2020, 
  • November 29, 2021, 
  • November 25, 2022, and 
  • November 9, 2023. 

The government intended the FCRA to ensure that furnishers deliver fair and accurate consumer reports. This goal remains true and is a core reason the CFPB adjusts the maximum charge for consumer reports. These changes allow consumers to acquire their files at a fair, according to the FCRA’s regulations. As such, consumers can expect the maximum charge to become $15.50 on January 1, 2024.

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