- State Updates: Nevada, Washington, Idaho, Arizona
- Federal Stimulus Funds Guidance
- RMAI COVID-19 Resources
State Updates – Temporary Guidance, Proposed Rule for Comment, Branch Licenses
Nevada Extends Work from Home Guidance to March 31, 2021
On December 15, 2020, the State of Nevada Department of Business and Industry Financial Institutions Division (NFID) announced the extension of its Temporary Guidance Regarding Working from Home through March 31, 2021. This is the third time the NFID has issued temporary guidance since the Governor first announced a State of Emergency in March of 2020.
As in previous extensions, the NFID reminds collection agency licensees and registrants the temporary guidance does not amend current Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) or the Nevada Administrative Code (NAC) and does not create new statutory framework. Additionally, all licensees and registrants must comply with the applicable NRS, NAC, and other state and federal laws and regulations. Among such requirements, agencies must exercise due diligence in safeguarding company and customer data, information and records – whether in paper or electronic format – protecting them against unauthorized or accidental access, use, modification, duplication, destruction or disclosure.
So, what does this mean? According to the NFID, collection agencies should take care to ensure they can manage compliance with Nevada’s laws and requirements, the Temporary Guidance Regarding Working from Home as well as the laws of the other jurisdictions in which they do business. As a practical matter, members should be aware the NFID does not make concessions for an agency’s failure to comply with Nevada’s requirements because it is instead complying with the laws and requirements of other states in connection with the collection of debt.
Washington State – Submit Comments by January 5th for Proposed Work from Home Rule
The Department of Licensing in Washington State has published a proposed a rule which would allow collection agencies the ability to allow their employees to work from home. Prior to the current pandemic, remote work was prohibited in Washington State. The proposed rule can be found here.
RMAI encourages our members to provide written comments in support of the proposed rule no later than January 5, 2021. We know that the consumer advocates are going to try to criticize the proposed rule, so we need to provide a counterbalance.
Submit your written comments to Julie Konnersman, Department of Licensing, Washington State Board for Architects, P.O. Box 9020, Olympia, WA 98507-9020 or email email@example.com.
Idaho – Work from Home Guidance Extended to June 30, 2021
On December 3, 2020, the Idaho Department of Finance has extended its temporary regulatory guidance that allows employees of collection agency licensees to work from their own residence, without obtaining an Idaho branch license, until June 30, 2021.
Arizona – Branch Licenses No Longer Required
The Arizona Department of Insurance & Financial Institutions issued guidance that effective September 28, 2020 Collection Agencies licensed in Arizona no longer have to maintain Branch Licenses.
Federal Stimulus Funds Guidance
Negotiations continue regarding direct payments to struggling US consumers in the next stimulus package. If they are included, RMAI again advises members to avoid seeking these funds as a potential source of payment on outstanding consumer obligations. Specifically, to the degree the federal stimulus funds are ascertainable, RMAI asks members to avoid soliciting those funds or otherwise attaching those funds for the purposes of satisfying a debt or money judgment. If a consumer wishes to use these funds for the payment of an obligation, that is acceptable, but should not be solicited.
RMAI COVID-19 Resources
Happy Holidays and Best Wishes for 2021!
This alert is intended for members of the Receivables Management Association International and is for informational purposes only and is in no way intended to provide legal advice. Members are encouraged to consult with an attorney of their choice for legal advice concerning this matter.