Event Detail
Event:Debt Collection Informational Session
Type of Event:Informational Session
Date:09/22/2016, 10:00 AM


Debt Collection Informational Session
Notice of Session on September 22, 2016

The Massachusetts Division of Banks (Division) and the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General are seeking input on the current state of debt collection and debt collection regulation within the Commonwealth.  The Division and the Office of the Attorney General are considering whether changes to the statutory and regulatory framework regarding debt collection may be warranted. 

The Division and the Office of the Attorney General welcome interested members of the public, consumers, consumer advocates, and industry members to attend an informational session and provide oral or written testimony regarding the current state of debt collection and regulation within the Commonwealth.  The informational session will be conducted jointly by the Division and the Office of the Attorney General.

The session will be held as follows:

When:              September 22, 2016

Time:               10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Where:            1000 Washington Street
                         Hearing Room 1-E, First Floor
                         Boston, MA 02118

In addition, written comments may be submitted to the Massachusetts Division of Banks, 1000 Washington Street, 10th Floor, Boston, MA 02118-6400 or at dob.comments@state.ma.us until 5:00 p.m. on Friday, October 21, 2016.  Specific questions about this session should be directed to Cynthia Begin, Chief Risk Officer of the Division of Banks or Max Weinstein of the Office of the Attorney General. Please note that this informational session is in addition to any public hearing that may otherwise be required by a formal rulemaking process, should that occur.

The Division and the Office of the Attorney General seek specific input in response to the following inquiries:

  • How has the debt collection industry changed over time?  How have advances in technology shaped the debt collection industry in recent years?
  • What types of organizational structures are typical or common in the debt collection and debt buying industries?  What are the business purposes for those arrangements?
  • Do debt buyers and debt collectors assign ownership and collection functions to separate, but affiliated, organizations?  What are the details and purposes of such arrangements?
  • Where a debt collector or debt buyer has multiple separate, but affiliated entities, which entities should be subject to licensure and why?
  • Should passive debt buyers be licensed as debt collectors or required to be registered in some way?
  • Do law firms exclusively or primarily engaged in debt collection employ non-attorneys who are themselves engaged in debt collection activities?  If so, how do firms supervise the debt collection activities of these non-attorneys?
  • What information is typically provided to a debt buyer as part of the sale of a debt and does it vary depending on the type of debt?
  • Do consumers have access to all or part of this information upon request?
  • Aside from residential mortgage debt, do creditors typically notify consumers that their debt has been sold? If not, should notification be required for all types of debts?
  • Should the scope of the attorney-at-law exemption be clarified? If so, how?
  • Are there practices that should be prohibited that are not currently prohibited?
  • How should changes in the federal laws and regulations governing debt collection practices be reflected in the Commonwealth’s regulations?
  • What litigation-related issues/problems do consumers face regarding debt collection? What changes could be incorporated into the Division’s regulation to address these challenges?
  • What other debt collection related issues do consumers and/or industry members face?
  • Additional comments and testimony, including specific recommendations, are welcome.


The Division and the Office of the Attorney General look forward to receiving testimony and written comments on this important issue.

Written comments:accepted until: 10/21/2016
Location:1000 Washington Street
Hearing Room 1-E
First Floor
Boston, Massachusetts
Contact:DOB -- Massachusetts Division Of Banks
Registration:No Registration