TITLE 7. BANKING AND SECURITIES

PART 1. FINANCE COMMISSION OF TEXAS

CHAPTER 7. TEXAS FINANCIAL EDUCATION ENDOWMENT FUND

7 TAC §§7.101 - 7.105

The Finance Commission of Texas (commission) proposes new 7 TAC, Part 1, Chapter 7, §§7.101 - 7.105, concerning the Texas Financial Education Endowment Fund.

In general, the purpose of the proposed new rules is to provide rules for the administration of the Texas Financial Education Endowment (TFEE) fund created by Texas Finance Code, §393.628. The proposed rules place into regulation existing commission policy, including the TFEE Grant Administration and Advisory Policy Manual, and commission approval of award amounts and grantees for each grant cycle. Additionally, certain proposed rules provide clarification and guidance regarding gifts, donations, and fund management.

The TFEE was enacted by the 82nd Texas Legislature in 2011 to support statewide financial capability and consumer credit building activities and programs. The Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner (OCCC) and grant coordinator, assisted by the Grant Advisory Committee (GAC), have developed policies and procedures approved by the commission to administer the TFEE fund. These policies have been continually updated and refined to provide more efficiency in the TFEE grant program and in fund management. This action proposes to codify the core policies into regulation, while maintaining the commission's flexibility to approve particular award amounts, grantees, and policy improvements for each grant cycle.

The individual purposes of each proposed new rule are outlined in the following paragraphs.

Section 7.101 specifies the applicability and purpose of Chapter 7 to govern the administration of the TFEE fund, and also outlines the components of the fund. The TFEE fund consists of assessments paid by credit access business applicants and licensees, as well as gifts and donations contributed for financial education or consumer credit educational purposes.

Section 7.102 explains the responsibilities of the parties that administer and manage the TFEE fund, including the commission, the OCCC and its commissioner, the GAC, and the grant coordinator.

Section 7.103 outlines the TFEE grant program, with provisions regarding grant cycle timing, eligible grant applicants, the grant application, commission approval of award amounts and grantees, the grant agreement, and grantee compliance. Additional subsections describe reporting and monitoring requirements, as well as reimbursement procedure. Proposed new §7.103 maintains the TFEE Grant Administration and Advisory Policy Manual, while providing further clarity for applicants and grantees.

Section 7.104 details the gifts and donations that may be made to the TFEE fund, as currently authorized by statute. TFEE gifts and donations must be either for a purpose provided by Texas Finance Code, §393.628(c) ("TFEE purpose"), or for a consumer credit education purpose under Texas Finance Code, §14.105(b). Gifts and donations may come from state agencies or other parties as approved by the commission.

Section 7.105 provides guiding principles for the management of the TFEE fund. Proposed new §7.105 references the statutory location and manner of investment for the TFEE fund.

Leslie L. Pettijohn, Consumer Credit Commissioner, has determined that for the first five-year period the new rules are in effect, there will be no fiscal implications for state or local government as a result of administering the rules.

For each year of the first five years the new rule chapter is in effect, Commissioner Pettijohn has also determined that the public benefit anticipated as a result of the proposed new rules will be that the commission's rules will provide clarity and consistency for TFEE grant applicants and grantees. Additionally, the proposed new rules will enhance the OCCC's and commission's administration of the TFEE fund.

The proposed new rules merely place into regulation existing policy and practice regarding the commission's administration of the TFEE fund. The proposal does not impose new requirements on grantees, donors, or other parties. Any costs that may be incurred would be imposed by the statute and are not a result of the proposed rules. Thus, aside from any costs required by the existing statutory provisions, the agency does not anticipate any additional costs to persons who are required to comply with the proposed rules. There will be no adverse economic effect on small or micro-businesses. There will be no effect on individuals required to comply with the new rules as proposed.

Comments on the proposed new rules may be submitted in writing to Laurie Hobbs, Assistant General Counsel, Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner, 2601 North Lamar Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78705-4207 or by email to laurie.hobbs@occc.texas.gov. To be considered, a written comment must be received on or before 5:00 p.m. central time on the 31st day after the date the proposal is published in the Texas Register. At the conclusion of the 31st day after the proposed new rules are published in the Texas Register, no further written comments will be considered or accepted by the commission.

The new rules are proposed under Texas Finance Code, §393.628(f), which authorizes the commission to adopt rules to administer the Texas Financial Education Endowment.

The statutory provisions affected by the proposal are contained in Texas Finance Code, Chapters 14 and 393.

§7.101.Applicability and Purpose.

(a) Applicability. This chapter governs the administration of the Texas Financial Education Endowment (TFEE) fund as provided by Texas Finance Code, §393.628.

(b) Purpose. The purpose of this chapter is to provide guidelines regarding the administration of the TFEE fund, which serves to support statewide financial education and consumer credit building activities and programs in Texas.

(c) TFEE fund. The TFEE fund consists of assessments paid by credit access business applicants and license holders, as well as gifts and donations contributed to the fund to fulfill TFEE or consumer credit educational purposes as provided in §7.104 of this title (relating to TFEE Gifts and Donations).

§7.102.TFEE Responsibilities.

(a) Finance commission and Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner (OCCC). The finance commission administers all aspects of TFEE, including the grant program, gifts, donations, funding and policy decisions. The OCCC is responsible for collection of assessment fees, disbursement and tracking of TFEE funds, and maintaining financial records of revenue, expenditures, and reconciliation of funds. The Consumer Credit Commissioner (commissioner) or the commissioner's designee serves as the investment officer appointed by the finance commission to execute grant agreements, accept gifts and donations, and invest TFEE funds.

(b) Grant Advisory Committee (GAC) and grant coordinator. The GAC serves in an advisory role and makes program recommendations to the grant coordinator and finance commission audit committee regarding TFEE administration. The grant coordinator serves under the direction of the commissioner, provides information regarding grant activity to the GAC and finance commission, and serves as the liaison between grantees and the GAC.

§7.103.TFEE Grant Program.

(a) Grant cycle. The TFEE fund may have one competitive grant cycle every two years.

(1) Funding determination. The grant funding determination is made by December 31 of each odd-numbered year.

(2) Programming cycle. A new TFEE grant programming cycle may open on January 1 of every even-numbered year. An applicant may choose to apply for a one-year grant programming cycle, or a two-year grant programming cycle. The grant programming cycle for a one-year grantee begins on January 1 and ends on December 31 of the even-numbered year for the applicable cycle. The grant programming cycle for a two-year grantee begins on January 1 of the even-numbered year and ends on December 31 of the following odd-numbered year for the applicable cycle.

(b) Eligible grant applicants. Nonprofit organizations, schools, and for-profit entities are eligible to apply for TFEE grant funding. TFEE grant funding is not available to financial service providers and entities regulated by the finance commission.

(c) Grant application. To be considered for the TFEE grant program, an applicant must complete and submit the grant application by the deadline and in accordance with the instructions for the applicable grant cycle. Late or incomplete grant applications will not be accepted. Meeting the eligibility criteria and submission of a grant application does not guarantee award of a grant in any amount.

(d) Finance commission approval. The finance commission will approve the items listed in this subsection during a meeting open to the public.

(1) Award amounts. Before the start of the competitive grant process for each grant cycle, the finance commission will determine the total TFEE fund amount to be awarded for the applicable grant cycle.

(2) Grantees. The audit committee, upon receipt of advice from the GAC and grant coordinator, will present recommendations to the finance commission of parties selected to receive TFEE awards for the applicable grant cycle. The finance commission has complete discretion to approve or deny, all or in part, the recommendations presented by the audit committee. Only grantees approved by the finance commission will be awarded TFEE funds upon fulfillment of grant requirements.

(e) Grant agreement. To participate in the TFEE grant program, a grantee approved by the finance commission must execute the grant agreement for the applicable grant cycle.

(f) Grantee compliance. A grantee must comply with applicable financial, administrative, and programmatic terms and conditions, and exercise proper stewardship over awarded TFEE funds. A grantee must use awarded TFEE funds in compliance with the following in effect for the applicable grant cycle:

(1) all applicable state laws and regulations;

(2) all applicable federal laws and regulations;

(3) the TFEE Grant Administration and Advisory Policy Manual;

(4) the grant application, including all application guidelines and instructions at the time of application;

(5) the grant agreement signed by the commissioner or commissioner's designee and the grantee;

(6) all reporting and monitoring requirements, as outlined in the grant agreement and subsection (g) of this section; and

(7) any other guidance documents posted on the TFEE website for the applicable grant cycle.

(g) Reporting and monitoring.

(1) General reporting requirements. To receive reimbursement of TFEE grant expenses, a grantee must:

(A) submit grant reports in a timely manner;

(B) maintain satisfactory compliance with the grant agreement and proposed grant activities;

(C) report performance measures; and

(D) track and report participant demographic information.

(2) Semi-annual reports. A grantee must submit semi-annual reports that demonstrate performance outcomes and financial information over the term of the grant in accordance with and by the deadlines set forth in the grant agreement.

(3) Six-month longitudinal report. A grantee must submit a six-month longitudinal report after program completion to demonstrate program objectives.

(4) Monitoring. The grant coordinator or GAC may use the following methods to monitor a grantee's performance and expenditures:

(A) Desk review. The grant coordinator or GAC may conduct a desk review of a grantee to review and compare individual source documentation and materials to summary data provided during the reporting process.

(B) Site visits and inspection reviews. The grant coordinator or GAC may conduct a scheduled site visit to a grantee's place of business to review compliance and performance issues. Site visits may be comprehensive or limited in scope.

(h) Reimbursement.

(1) Eligibility. To be eligible for reimbursement, a grantee must comply with all terms of the grant agreement, as well as all other items provided in subsection (f) of this section. Grant funds will be awarded on a cost reimbursement basis for all actual, allowable, and allocable costs incurred by a grantee pursuant to the grant agreement. Expenses that were incurred before the beginning or after the termination of the grant agreement are not eligible for reimbursement.

(2) Procedure. To request reimbursement for work performed on TFEE grant activities, a grantee must submit a grant reimbursement report in accordance with and by the deadlines set forth in the grant agreement. A grantee must submit a detailed expense report with supporting documentation to justify the reimbursement request. The OCCC will review and approve requests for reimbursement that satisfy the requirements and promptly disburse funds in response to approved requests.

§7.104.TFEE Gifts and Donations.

(a) Authorized gifts and donations.

(1) TFEE purpose. Under Texas Finance Code, §393.628(d), the finance commission may solicit gifts, grants, and donations that fulfill the purpose of TFEE to support statewide financial education and consumer credit building activities and programs in this state, including the specific purposes provided by Texas Finance Code, §393.628(c).

(2) Consumer credit educational purpose. Under Texas Finance Code, §14.105(a), the commissioner may accept gifts, grants, and donations on behalf of the state for a purpose related to a consumer credit educational opportunity, unless prohibited by Texas Finance Code, §14.105(b) or other law. A consumer credit educational opportunity is also considered to be a consumer credit building activity under TFEE.

(3) From state agencies. Under Texas Finance Code, §393.628(e), the finance commission may partner with other state agencies to administer the TFEE fund, including the acceptance of gifts and donations from other state agencies, for the purposes outlined in paragraphs (1) and (2) of this subsection.

(4) From other parties. Gifts and donations from parties other than state agencies must meet the same criteria required for grantees eligible under §7.103(b) of this title (relating to TFEE Grant Program).

(b) Finance commission approval. The finance commission will approve any gift or donation to the TFEE fund.

§7.105.TFEE Fund Management.

In accordance with Texas Finance Code, §393.628(b), TFEE funds will be remitted to the comptroller for deposit in the Texas Treasury Safekeeping Trust Company. TFEE funds may be invested and reinvested in the same manner as funds of the Employees Retirement System of Texas under Texas Government Code, Chapter 815, Subchapter D.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on June 16, 2017.

TRD-201702357

Leslie L. Pettijohn

Consumer Credit Commissioner

Finance Commission of Texas

Earliest possible date of adoption: July 30, 2017

For further information, please call: (512) 936-7621


CHAPTER 9. RULES OF PROCEDURE FOR CONTESTED CASE HEARINGS, APPEALS, AND RULEMAKINGS

The Finance Commission of Texas (commission) proposes amendments to §9.1, concerning Application, Construction, and Definitions; and §9.12, concerning Default in 7 TAC, Chapter 9, concerning Rules of Procedure for Contested Case Hearings, Appeals, and Rulemakings.

The purpose of the proposed amendments is to clarify the procedures used by the finance agencies to dispose of a contested case in the event of default. The finance agencies are the Texas Department of Banking (DOB), the Texas Department of Savings and Mortgage Lending (SML), and the Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner (OCCC). The proposed updates are necessary to reflect new default procedures enacted by the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH), which became effective on January 1, 2017.

As a note of background, SOAH recently amended its procedural rules, found in Title 1, Chapter 155 of the Texas Administrative Code. The amendments were made in response to recommendations from the Sunset Advisory Commission. The Sunset Advisory Commission recommended that SOAH be specifically authorized to remand default cases back to the referring agencies for informal disposition. In 2015, the Texas Legislature adopted this recommendation by enacting HB 2154, codified at Texas Government Code, §2001.058(d-1).

The proposed amendments to the default rules provide the finance agencies with specific procedures for resolving default cases that are remanded back to the agencies by SOAH. The agencies already have a default rule that applies to in-house contested case hearings.

The finance agencies circulated an early draft of proposed changes to interested stakeholders. The agencies received two informal written precomments. Certain recommendations by the precommenters have been incorporated into this proposal. The agencies appreciate the thoughtful input provided by stakeholders.

The individual purposes of the amendments are provided in the following paragraphs.

The purpose of the proposed amendment to §9.1 is to clarify that an agency must follow the requirements of proposed new subsection (b) of §9.12 for disposing of a default in a contested case hearing conducted by SOAH.

Regarding §9.1, the rule currently states that the SOAH rules of procedure govern contested case hearings conducted by SOAH. To create analogous procedures for resolving default cases remanded back to the agencies, the proposed amendment to §9.1 states that proposed new §9.12(b) also governs contested case hearings conducted by SOAH.

The purpose of the amendments to §9.12 is to clarify the procedures for disposing of a contested case by default, as authorized by Texas Government Code, §2001.056 and §2001.058(d-1).

Regarding §9.12, the proposed amendments maintain the current rule language in relettered subsection (a). An additional phrase is added to the beginning of subsection (a), specifying that the procedures in this subsection apply to hearings conducted by an administrative law judge employed or contracted by an agency.

The proposed amendments also add a new subsection (b) to §9.12. Subsection (b) specifies the default procedures that apply to hearings conducted by SOAH. The proposed amendments: (1) specify how an agency may notify a party of a contested case hearing, (2) require the agency to prove that it provided proper notice to the defaulting party, and (3) provide procedures for agencies to follow when resolving default cases. The amendments do not affect a party's right to a hearing or impose additional requirements on the party.

Subsection (b) states that an agency may request that an administrative law judge make a finding of default in a hearing conducted by SOAH. Subsection (b)(1) describes the mailing address and method of service that the agency must use to serve the notice of hearing. Subsection (b)(2) requires the agency to present adequate proof that it properly served the opposing party with the notice of hearing. Subsection (b)(3) describes the effect of default, which includes deeming admitted the allegations in the notice of hearing and granting the relief sought in the notice. Subsection (b)(4) states that the agency may request that a defaulted case be dismissed and remand to the agency for informal disposition. Subsection (b)(5) describes the content of the final order that the agency may issue, after a default case is dismissed and remanded to the agency.

One precommenter recommended adding language stating that a party may have a finding of default set aside by a showing of good cause or in the interests of justice by filing the appropriate motions, as set forth in 1 TAC §155.501, which is the default rule used by SOAH. In response to this precomment, proposed §9.12(b)(5) specifies that the defaulting party must first receive notice of its right to file a motion to set aside a default.

A second precommenter recommended clarifying proposed §9.12(b)(3) to specify that the relief sought in the notice may be granted only against a party that is given proper notice of the hearing. The agencies agree with this precomment, and proposed §9.12(b)(3) includes the suggested additional language.

The second precommenter also recommended adding a proposed §9.12(b)(6), stating that "[a]n order issued by an agency after default has no precedential or evidentiary value in a subsequent action alleging the same, or similar, violations." The precommenter explains that "[t]his rule, as proposed, may authorize the creation of an order that could have equal footing with an order that was created in a contested and completed administrative procedure." The agencies disagree with this statement. The current rule authorizes the agencies to dispose of a contested case by default. The proposed amendments to the rule do not change the evidentiary or precedential value of a default order.

First, default orders have evidentiary value. Under Rule 401 of the Texas Rules of Evidence, evidence is relevant if tends to make a fact more or less probable and is of consequence in determining the action. Prior violations are relevant to determining the appropriate sanction for subsequent violations. For example, under Texas Finance Code, §14.253(c)(3), "[i]n determining the amount of an administrative penalty, the [consumer credit] commissioner shall consider . . . the history of violations." This statute does not prohibit or condition the use of default orders to establish the history of violations.

Second, default orders have precedential value. Under the doctrine of res judicata, a final administrative order bars subsequent adjudication of the same subject matter by the same party. Al-Jazrawi v. Texas Bd. of Land Surveying,, 719 S.W.2d 670, 671 (Tex. App.--Austin 1986, writ ref'd n.r.e). This doctrine applies to default judgments. See, e.g., Greater Houston Transp. Co. v. Wilson, 725 S.W.2d 427, 430 (Tex. App.--Houston [14th Dist.] 1987, writ ref'd n.r.e.).

Third, similarly situated parties are treated fairly and consistently when all final orders are given effect.

Finally, recognizing the precedential value of default orders eliminates the need to use substantial agency resources to relitigate prior violations. This is consistent with the purpose of the default rule, which is to best utilize agency resources by efficiently disposing of defaulted cases.

Leslie L. Pettijohn, Consumer Credit Commissioner, on behalf of the Finance Commission of Texas, has determined that for the first five-year period the proposed amendments are in effect there will be no fiscal implications for state or local government as a result of administering the rules.

Commissioner Pettijohn also has determined that for each year of the first five years the amendments are in effect, the public benefit anticipated as a result of the amendments will be that the commission's rules will be more easily understood by licensees required to comply with the rules, and will be more easily enforced.

There is no anticipated cost to persons who are required to comply with the amendments as proposed. There will be no adverse economic effect on small or micro- businesses. There will be no effect on individuals required to comply with the amendments as proposed.

Comments on the proposal may be submitted in writing to Laurie Hobbs, Assistant General Counsel, Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner, 2601 North Lamar Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78705-4207 or by email to laurie.hobbs@occc.texas.gov. To be considered, a written comment must be received on or before 5:00 p.m. central time on the 31st day after the date the proposal is published in the Texas Register. At the conclusion of business on the 31st day after the proposal is published in the Texas Register, no further written comments will be considered or accepted by the commission.

SUBCHAPTER A. GENERAL

7 TAC §9.1

The amendments are proposed under Texas Government Code, §2001.004(1), which requires all administrative agencies to adopt rules of practice stating the nature and requirements of all available formal and informal procedures.

The amendments are also proposed under specific rulemaking authority in the substantive statutes administered by the agencies. Texas Finance Code, §11.301 and §31.003(a)(5) authorize the finance commission to adopt rules necessary or reasonable to facilitate the fair hearing and adjudication of matters before the banking commissioner and the finance commission. Texas Finance Code, §151.102(a)(1) authorizes the finance commission to adopt rules necessary to implement and clarify Chapter 151. Texas Finance Code, §154.051(b) authorizes the Department of Banking to adopt rules concerning matters incidental to the enforcement and orderly administration of Chapter 154.

Texas Finance Code, §11.302 authorizes the finance commission to adopt rules applicable to state savings associations or to savings banks. Texas Finance Code, §96.002(a)(2) authorizes the savings and mortgage lending commissioner and the finance commission to adopt procedural rules for deciding applications filed with the savings and mortgage lending commissioner or the Department of Savings and Mortgage Lending.

Texas Finance Code, §11.304 authorizes the finance commission to adopt rules necessary for supervising the consumer credit commissioner and for ensuring compliance with Texas Finance Code, Chapter 14 and Title 4. Texas Finance Code, §371.006 authorizes the consumer credit commissioner to adopt rules necessary for the enforcement of Texas Finance Code, Chapter 371. Texas Finance Code, §11.306 authorizes the commission to adopt residential mortgage loan origination rules as provided by Chapter 156. Texas Finance Code, §180.004 authorizes the commission to adopt rules to enforce Chapter 180. Texas Finance Code, §393.622 authorizes the commission to adopt rules to enforce Chapter 393. Texas Occupations Code, §1956.0611 authorizes the commission to adopt rules to enforce Subchapter B, Chapter 1956.

The statutory provisions affected by the proposal are contained in Texas Finance Code, Chapters 14, 154, 156, 157, 180, 393, 394, and Title 4, and Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 1956.

§9.1.Application, Construction, and Definitions.

(a) This chapter governs contested case hearings conducted by an administrative law judge employed or contracted by an agency. All contested case hearings conducted by the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH) are governed by SOAH's procedural rules found at Title 1, Chapter 155 of the Texas Administrative Code and §9.12(b) of this title (relating to Default).

(b) The same rules of construction that apply to interpretation of Texas statutes and codes, the definitions in Government Code, §2001.003, and the definitions in subsection (c) of this section govern the interpretation of this chapter. If any section of this chapter is found to conflict with an applicable and controlling provision of other state or federal law, the section involved shall be void to the extent of the conflict without affecting the validity of the rest of this chapter.

(c) The following words and terms, when used in this chapter, have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

(1) Administrative law judge--The hearings officer employed by or contracted by an agency to conduct administrative hearings for the finance commission, the department of banking, the department of savings and mortgage lending, and the office of consumer credit commissioner.

(2) Agency--The finance commission, the department of banking, the department of savings and mortgage lending, or the office of consumer credit commissioner.

(3) Agency head(s)--Finance commission members, the banking commissioner, the savings and mortgage lending commissioner, or the consumer credit commissioner, or a designee if authorized by law.

(4) Applicant--A party seeking a license, registration, charter, or permit, or to amend its authority under an existing license, registration, charter or permit, or other action from an agency.

(5) Protestant--A party opposing an application for a license, registration, charter, permit, or other action filed with an agency who has paid any filing fees required by an applicable law.

(6) Respondent--A permittee, licensee, registrant, charter holder, or other party against whom a disciplinary proceeding is directed by an agency.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on June 16, 2017.

TRD-201702355

Leslie L. Pettijohn

Consumer Credit Commissioner

Finance Commission of Texas

Earliest possible date of adoption: July 30, 2017

For further information, please call: (512) 936-7621


SUBCHAPTER B. CONTESTED CASE HEARINGS

7 TAC §9.12

The amendments are proposed under Texas Government Code, §2001.004(1), which requires all administrative agencies to adopt rules of practice stating the nature and requirements of all available formal and informal procedures.

The amendments are also proposed under specific rulemaking authority in the substantive statutes administered by the agencies. Texas Finance Code, §11.301 and §31.003(a)(5) authorize the finance commission to adopt rules necessary or reasonable to facilitate the fair hearing and adjudication of matters before the banking commissioner and the finance commission. Texas Finance Code, §151.102(a)(1) authorizes the finance commission to adopt rules necessary to implement and clarify Chapter 151. Texas Finance Code, §154.051(b) authorizes the Department of Banking to adopt rules concerning matters incidental to the enforcement and orderly administration of Chapter 154.

Texas Finance Code, §11.302 authorizes the finance commission to adopt rules applicable to state savings associations or to savings banks. Texas Finance Code, §96.002(a)(2) authorizes the savings and mortgage lending commissioner and the finance commission to adopt procedural rules for deciding applications filed with the savings and mortgage lending commissioner or the Department of Savings and Mortgage Lending.

Texas Finance Code, §11.304 authorizes the finance commission to adopt rules necessary for supervising the consumer credit commissioner and for ensuring compliance with Texas Finance Code, Chapter 14 and Title 4. Texas Finance Code, §371.006 authorizes the consumer credit commissioner to adopt rules necessary for the enforcement of Texas Finance Code, Chapter 371. Texas Finance Code, §11.306 authorizes the commission to adopt residential mortgage loan origination rules as provided by Chapter 156. Texas Finance Code, §180.004 authorizes the commission to adopt rules to enforce Chapter 180. Texas Finance Code, §393.622 authorizes the commission to adopt rules to enforce Chapter 393. Texas Occupations Code, §1956.0611 authorizes the commission to adopt rules to enforce Subchapter B, Chapter 1956.

The statutory provisions affected by the proposal are contained in Texas Finance Code, Chapters 14, 154, 156, 157, 180, 393, 394, and Title 4, and Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 1956.

§9.12.Default.

(a) In-house hearings. In a hearing conducted by an administrative law judge employed or contracted by an agency, if, [If,] after served with notice in compliance with §9.11 of this title (relating to Notice and Initiation of Proceedings), a party fails to attend a hearing, the administrative law judge may proceed in that party's absence and, where appropriate, may issue a proposal for decision against that party. The proposal for decision shall be served upon the defaulting party and the party will be afforded the opportunity to contest the law as stated in the proposal for decision, but shall be deemed to have waived the right to contest the evidence, cross-examine the witnesses, and present an affirmative case or defense. In the alternative, an agency may informally dispose of the matter as permitted by §2001.056 of the Texas Government Code, without the necessity of a hearing.

(b) SOAH hearings. In a hearing conducted by the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH), the agency may request that the administrative law judge make a finding of default under 1 TAC §155.501 (relating to Default Proceedings).

(1) Service of notice of hearing. A notice of hearing may be served to the party's last known address. Applicants and holders of licenses, registrations, charters, and permits shall keep the agency informed as to their correct current mailing addresses and may be served with initial process by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, to the address provided to the agency.

(2) Adequate proof of notice of hearing. At the time of the request, the agency must present adequate proof to the administrative law judge that the agency properly served the party with the notice of hearing, as required by 1 TAC §155.501(b).

(3) Effect of default. If the administrative law judge receives the required showing of proof to support a default, the allegations contained in the notice of hearing may be deemed admitted, and the relief sought in the notice may be granted with respect to any party given proper notice of the hearing.

(4) Disposing of default case. The agency may request that the administrative law judge dismiss the case from the SOAH docket and remand it to the agency for informal disposition as permitted by Texas Government Code, §2001.056 and §2001.058(d-1).

(5) Final order after default. If the administrative law judge issues a conditional order of dismissal and remand that provides the defaulting party with adequate notice and opportunity to set aside the default under 1 TAC §155.501(e) and the conditional order of dismissal and remand has become final, the agency may issue a final order that:

(A) finds that the agency served the party with a notice of hearing stating that if the party failed to attend the hearing, then the allegations contained in the notice of hearing could be deemed admitted, and the relief sought might be granted;

(B) describes how the notice of hearing was served on the party;

(C) finds that the party failed to attend the hearing;

(D) finds that the allegations described in the notice are deemed admitted;

(E) concludes that the party has defaulted as a matter of law; and

(F) grants the relief described in the notice of hearing.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on June 16, 2017.

TRD-201702356

Leslie L. Pettijohn

Consumer Credit Commissioner

Finance Commission of Texas

Earliest possible date of adoption: July 30, 2017

For further information, please call: (512) 936-7621


PART 5. OFFICE OF CONSUMER CREDIT COMMISSIONER

CHAPTER 84. MOTOR VEHICLE INSTALLMENT SALES

The Finance Commission of Texas (commission) proposes amendments to §§84.203 - 84.205, 84.302, 84.308, 84.309, 84.707 - 84.709, 84.804, and 84.808 in 7 TAC, Chapter 84, concerning Motor Vehicle Installment Sales.

In general, the purpose of the rule changes in 7 TAC, Chapter 84 is to implement four bills that the Texas Legislature passed in the 2017 legislative session: HB 2339, HB 2949, SB 1052, and SB 1199. The proposed rule changes relate to the following issues: trade-in credit agreements, documentary fees, debt cancellation agreements, deferments, and depreciation benefit service contracts.

HB 2339 adds new §348.125 to the Texas Finance Code, authorizing a retail seller to provide a trade-in credit agreement in connection with a motor vehicle retail installment transaction. The bill defines a trade-in credit agreement as "a contractual arrangement under which a retail seller agrees to provide a specified amount as a motor vehicle trade-in credit for the diminished value of the motor vehicle that is the subject of the retail installment contract in connection with which the trade-in credit agreement is offered if the motor vehicle is damaged but not rendered a total loss as a result of a collision accident, with the credit to be applied toward the purchase or lease of a different motor vehicle from the retail seller or an affiliate of the retail seller." The bill includes disclosure requirements, refunding requirements, a limitation on the amount charged, and a requirement that the seller be insured under a contractual liability reimbursement policy approved by the Texas Department of Insurance.

HB 2949 amends Texas Finance Code, §348.006, to specify that a retail seller is not required to notify the agency of an increased documentary fee if the seller charges a documentary fee that is less than or equal to an amount presumed reasonable by rule of the commission.

SB 1052 moves provisions regarding debt cancellation agreements that require insurance from Chapter 348 to a new Chapter 354 of the Texas Finance Code. The bill allows these agreements to be provided in a Chapter 345 retail installment transaction for certain covered vehicles, including a motorcycle, all-terrain vehicle, snowmobile, camper, boat, or personal watercraft trailer. The bill also allows the office of Consumer Credit Commissioner (OCCC) to agree to extend the 45-day approval period for debt cancellation agreements by an additional 45 days, and specifies refunding and recordkeeping requirements when a debt cancellation agreement terminates due to early payoff of a retail installment contract.

SB 1052 also amends Texas Finance Code, §348.114, which relates to deferment charges. The bill limits the deferment charge provision to contracts using the add-on method or scheduled installment earnings method. The bill also adds new §348.114(c), which provides that in a contract using the true daily earnings method, the holder may defer one or more installments, and time price differential continues to accrue on the unpaid balance at the rate agreed to in the contract. At the time of the deferment, the holder must provide a written notice stating that finance charge will continue to accrue.

SB 1199 amends Texas Occupations Code, §1304.003, to authorize a depreciation benefit optional member program. The bill defines a depreciation benefit optional member program as "a service contract financed under Chapter 348 or 353, Finance Code, that pays to the buyer, as a credit toward the purchase of a replacement vehicle at a participating dealer, an amount less than or equal to the difference between the purchase price and actual cash value for a total constructive loss." These depreciation benefit service contracts would be subject to the same requirements that currently apply to service contracts under Chapter 1304 of the Occupations Code, including the requirement that the provider be registered with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, the requirement to maintain a reimbursement insurance policy and a funded reserve account, disclosure requirements, and refunding requirements.

The agency circulated an early draft of proposed changes to interested stakeholders. The agency then held an online stakeholder meeting where attendees asked questions through a webinar. The agency did not receive any informal written precomments other than the questions received through the webinar.

The individual purposes of the amendments are provided in the following paragraphs.

A proposed amendment to §84.203(a) specifies that the rule on deferment charges does not apply to an amendment described by Texas Finance Code, §348.114(c), to defer all or part of one or more payments for a retail installment transaction that employs the true daily earnings method. In addition, throughout §84.203, the proposal deletes references to the maximum deferment charge for transactions using the true daily earnings method. These amendments to §84.203 are intended to implement SB 1052's amendments to Texas Finance Code, §348.114, which provide that the continuing accrual of time price differential in a transaction using the true daily earnings method is not a deferment charge.

During the stakeholder meeting, one attendee asked what is required for a deferment in a transaction using the true daily earnings method, other than the notice described in Texas Finance Code, §348.114(c), as added by SB 1052. This issue is outside the intended scope of the amendments to §84.203, which specify that §84.203 does not apply to this type of deferment. As amended by the proposal, §84.203 would apply only to transactions using the add-on method or the scheduled installment earnings method. The agency will consider providing further guidance on this issue in the near future, in updates to the agency's advisory guidance for deferments in motor vehicle retail installment transactions.

A proposed amendment to §84.204 adds a new subsection (j), providing that a retail seller may not include a benefit under a trade-in credit agreement in the "Dealership Allowance for Trade-In" section of the disclosure of equity standard form. This amendment is intended to avoid confusion in the calculation of the trade-in allowance, which is limited to the value of the trade-in vehicle. Under Texas Tax Code, §152.002(b)(5), "the value of a motor vehicle taken by a seller as all or a part of the consideration for sale of another motor vehicle, including any cash payment to the buyer under Section 348.404 or 353.402, Finance Code" is excluded from the total consideration for sales tax purposes. The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts uses the term "trade-in allowance" to refer to the value of the vehicle for purposes of this exclusion from sales tax. Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, Motor Vehicle Tax Guidebook at x, II-2 (2011). The benefit under a trade-in credit agreement is separate from the value of the trade-in vehicle itself. For this reason, the benefit under a trade-in credit agreement should not be included in the trade-in allowance shown on the disclosure of equity.

A proposed amendment to §84.205(b)(1) specifies that a documentary fee of $150 or less is presumed reasonable under Texas Finance Code, §348.006(f). In addition, throughout §84.205, the proposal deletes references to the current requirement to provide a notification for a documentary fee that is greater than $50 but less than or equal to $150. These amendments are intended to implement HB 2949, which specifies that a retail seller is not required to notify the agency of an increased documentary fee if the seller charges a documentary fee that is less than or equal to an amount presumed reasonable by rule of the commission. $150 is the same amount that the agency presumes reasonable under current §84.205(b)(2). The commission adopted $150 as a reasonable documentary fee amount in 2016. This amount was based on the agency's ongoing review of documentary fee cost analyses, as well as document-related costs for Texas motor vehicle dealerships. The rule's current requirement to provide both a notification and a cost analysis for a documentary fee over $150 would remain in place.

Until HB 2949 goes into effect on September 1, 2017, sellers are required to continue complying with current law, and may not charge a documentary fee over $50 without first notifying the agency.

Proposed amendments to §84.302, §84.308, and §84.309 contain updated citations to the new Chapter 354 of the Texas Finance Code, as added by SB 1052. In addition, an amendment to §84.309(d) acknowledges that the agency may agree to extend the normal 45-day approval period for debt cancellation agreements for an additional 45 days. This amendment is intended to implement SB 1052, which permits the agency to agree to these deadline extensions in new Texas Finance Code, §354.005(b).

In §84.707, the proposal amends the recordkeeping requirements for retail sellers that assign retail installment contracts. The amended recordkeeping requirements relate to trade-in credit agreements and depreciation benefit service contracts.

In §84.707(d)(2), proposed new subparagraphs (N) and (O) identify records that a seller must maintain for trade-in credit agreements, including a copy of the agreement, refunding records, and documentation used to process a claim. These amendments are intended to ensure that the agency can verify the seller's compliance with Texas Finance Code, §348.125, as added by HB 2339. These recordkeeping requirements are generally similar to requirements for other ancillary products. If any claims are administered by a party other than the seller, the seller should be able to obtain these records from the administrator.

In §84.707(d)(2), proposed new subparagraph (P) requires the seller to maintain records relating to depreciation benefit service contracts, including evidence of the amount of any credit, and any documentation obtained by the seller to process a benefit. This amendment is intended to ensure that the agency can verify that any benefit under a depreciation benefit service contract is accurately reflected on the retail installment contract.

During the stakeholder meeting, attendees asked several questions about the recordkeeping requirements for depreciation benefit service contracts. One attendee asked how long records must be maintained. The depreciation benefit service contract records would be subject to the general requirement in Texas Finance Code, §348.517(b), and current §84.707(d)(6) and §84.708(e)(9) to maintain records for the later of four years from the date of the retail installment contract, or two years from the date of the final entry. Another attendee asked whether records are required to be maintained in electronic or paper form. The depreciation benefit service contract records would be subject to the general provisions in current §84.707(c) and §84.708(c), which allow a licensee to maintain records using a legible paper or manual recordkeeping system, an electronic recordkeeping system, an optically imaged recordkeeping system, or a combination of these. Another attendee asked which party is the "seller" for purposes of the recordkeeping rules. Throughout §84.707 and §84.708, the term "seller" refers to the seller of the motor vehicle, which is not necessarily the provider of the service contract. Service contract providers are subject to separate recordkeeping requirements under Texas Occupations Code, §1304.155.

In §84.707(d), proposed new paragraph (6) requires the seller to maintain a copy of any contractual liability reinsurance policy required for trade-in credit agreements under new Texas Finance Code, §348.125(c), as added by HB 2339. This new paragraph also requires the seller to maintain a register or be able to generate a report reflecting agreements that were satisfied or denied. These amendments are intended to ensure that the agency can verify the seller's compliance with Texas Finance Code, §348.125, as added by HB 2339.

In §84.708, the proposal amends the recordkeeping requirements for retail sellers that collect installments on retail installment contracts. The amended recordkeeping requirements relate to deferments, trade-in credit agreements, and depreciation benefit service contracts. In §84.708(e)(2), new subparagraph (R) requires sellers to maintain written deferment agreements and deferment notices. These amendments are intended to ensure that the licensee can verify the seller's compliance with Texas Finance Code, §348.114, as amended by SB 1052. Other amendments throughout §84.708 conform to the previously discussed amendments to §84.707 relating to trade-in credit agreements and depreciation benefit service contracts.

In §84.709, the proposal amends the recordkeeping requirements for holders taking assignment of retail installment contracts. The amended recordkeeping requirements relate to deferments and debt cancellation agreements. In §84.709(e)(2), proposed new subparagraph (J) conforms to the previously discussed amendment to §84.708(e)(2) relating to deferments. In addition, a proposed amendment to §84.709(e)(3)(A)(v) specifies that a holder must maintain refunding records if it receives or issues a refund for certain ancillary products, including debt cancellation agreements.

In §84.804, the proposal amends a list of authorized itemized charges to include a charge for a trade-in credit agreement and a charge for a depreciation benefit service contract.

In §84.808(8), proposed new paragraphs (F) and (G) specify that a benefit provided under a trade-in credit agreement or depreciation benefit service contract must be included in the downpayment and included in the line of the retail installment contract labeled "other (describe)." As discussed previously, the benefit under a trade-in credit agreement is separate from the value of the trade-in vehicle itself, and should not be included in the trade-in allowance. Disclosing the trade-in credit agreement benefit on the "other" line of the downpayment section helps ensure that the buyer understands the benefit amount and is not misled into believing that the benefit is part of the trade-in allowance. Similarly, disclosing a depreciation benefit on the "other" line of the downpayment section helps ensure that the buyer understands the benefit amount.

During the stakeholder meeting, one attendee asked how the initial charge for the trade-in credit agreement should be disclosed, and asked whether proposed §84.808(8)(F) applies only to the transaction where the buyer receives a benefit under the agreement. To clarify, there are two retail installment transactions relevant to the trade-in credit agreement: the first transaction in which the buyer purchases the agreement, and the second transaction in which the buyer trades in the vehicle and receives a benefit under the agreement. In the first transaction, the initial charge for the trade-in credit agreement should be listed in the retail installment contract's itemization of amount financed, in the itemized charges not included in the cash price. This requirement is specified by Texas Finance Code, §348.005(4), as amended by HB 2339, and proposed §84.804(4)(R). For example, the seller may list the initial charge on line 4.O., "Other charges," of the model itemization of amount financed at §84.808(8)(A). In the second transaction, the benefit under the agreement should be disclosed in the retail installment contract's itemization of amount financed, on the "other" line of the downpayment section. Proposed §84.808(8)(F) applies only to the transaction where the buyer receives a benefit under the agreement.

Leslie L. Pettijohn, Consumer Credit Commissioner, has determined that for the first five-year period the rule changes are in effect there will be no fiscal implications for state or local government as a result of administering the rules.

Commissioner Pettijohn also has determined that for each year of the first five years the amendments are in effect, the public benefit anticipated as a result of the changes will be that the commission's rules will be more easily understood by licensees required to comply with the rules, will be more easily enforced, will be consistent with legislation recently passed by the legislature, and will provide guidance and clarity to motor vehicle sales finance licensees.

Additional economic costs may be incurred by a person required to comply with this proposal. The agency anticipates that any costs resulting from the proposal would involve complying with the proposed changes contained in §§84.707, 84.708, and 84.709 concerning recordkeeping.

In reference to §§84.707, 84.708, and 84.709 concerning recordkeeping, the agency anticipates that licensees may encounter the following costs to comply with the proposal: 1) labor costs, 2) costs to generate new records not currently kept, and 3) programming costs for licensees that utilize electronic recordkeeping systems. These costs are impossible to predict, as much will depend on the particular licensee's current software system and the amount of programming changes required to comply with the proposal.

Regarding the costs of recordkeeping, it is important to note that trade-in credit agreements and depreciation benefit service contracts are optional products. Licensees have the option of not offering these products, in which case there will be no costs incurred for those licensees. The agency anticipates that the fees charged in connection with these agreements will cover costs of complying with the recordkeeping requirements, resulting in a neutral cost to licensees required to comply with the proposal. In addition, the current rules at §§84.707(d)(2), 84.708(e)(2), 84.709(e)(2) already require licensees to keep transaction documents showing compliance with Chapter 348, and the current rules at §84.707(d)(2)(A)(v) and §84.708(e)(2)(A)(vi) already require sellers to keep copies of any agreements or disclosures signed by the retail buyer applicable to the transaction. In other words, even in the absence of the proposed recordkeeping amendments, licensees would still generally be required to keep copies of written deferment agreements, deferment-related notices, and trade-in credit agreements.

Overall, the agency anticipates that any costs involved to comply with the proposal will be minimal for most licensees and registrants. However, due to several factors resulting in varying, uncertain, and unpredictable costs, the agency would like to invite comment from licensees and registrants on any costs involved to comply with the proposal, as well as any alternatives to lessen those costs while achieving the purpose of the proposal. Aside from the previously outlined costs to comply with recordkeeping requirements and debt cancellation agreement submission fees, there will be no other effects on individuals required to comply with the rule changes as proposed.

The agency is not aware of any adverse economic effect on small or micro-businesses resulting from this proposal. But in order to obtain more complete information concerning the economic effect of these rule changes, the agency invites comments from interested stakeholders and the public on any economic impacts on small businesses, as well as any alternative methods of achieving the purpose of the proposal while minimizing adverse impacts on small businesses.

Comments on the proposal may be submitted in writing to Laurie Hobbs, Assistant General Counsel, Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner, 2601 North Lamar Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78705-4207 or by email to laurie.hobbs@occc.texas.gov. To be considered, a written comment must be received on or before 5:00 p.m. central time on the 31st day after the date the proposal is published in the Texas Register. At the conclusion of business on the 31st day after the proposal is published in the Texas Register, no further written comments will be considered or accepted by the commission.

SUBCHAPTER B. RETAIL INSTALLMENT CONTRACT

7 TAC §§84.203 - 84.205

All of the amendments are proposed under Texas Finance Code, §11.304, which authorizes the commission to adopt rules to ensure compliance with Title 4 of the Texas Finance Code. Additionally, Texas Finance Code, §348.513 grants the commission the authority to adopt rules to enforce the motor vehicle installment sales chapter.

The rule changes in §84.205 concerning documentary fees are proposed under Texas Finance Code, §348.006(f), as amended by HB 2949, which authorizes the commission to adopt a rule establishing a documentary fee amount presumed to be reasonable, and Texas Finance Code, §348.006(h), which authorizes the commission to adopt rules necessary to enforce §348.006.

The statutory provisions affected by the proposed rule changes are contained in Texas Finance Code, Chapters 345, 348, and 354.

§84.203.Deferment Charge.

(a) Definition. A "deferment charge" means a charge to defer the payment date of a scheduled payment or partial payment on a contract. A deferment charge prescribed by this section may occur in a retail installment transaction that employs the precomputed add-on method for regular payment contracts using the sum of the periodic balances or [,] the scheduled installment earnings method [, or the true daily earnings method]. This section applies only to an amendment relating to the deferment of all or a part of one or more installments, and does not apply to amendments relating to renewing, restating, or rescheduling the unpaid balance under a retail installment sales contract. This section does not apply to an amendment described by Texas Finance Code, §348.114(c), to defer all or part of one or more payments for a retail installment transaction that employs the true daily earnings method. The parties to a retail installment sales contract may agree to modify the terms of the transaction as long as the amendment conforms to the requirements of Texas Finance Code, Chapter 348, Subchapter B.

(b) - (c) (No change.)

(d) Computation of deferment charge. A holder of a retail installment sales contract under Texas Finance Code, Chapter 348 may calculate the deferment charge by any method of calculation as long as the deferment charge does not exceed the maximum amount permitted by Texas Finance Code, §348.114 and this section.

(1) - (2) (No change.)

[(3) True daily earnings method.]

[(A) Base deferment charge. For a regular or an irregular payment contract employing the true daily earnings method, a holder may assess, charge, and collect a base deferment charge computed by:]

[(i) Multiplying the amount of the installment or installments being deferred by either of the following rates computed on a daily basis using a 365-day calendar year:]

[(I) the maximum annualized daily rate authorized for the contract, as described by Figure: 7 TAC §84.201(d)(2)(B)(iii); or]

[(II) a lower rate agreed to by the parties, which may be the contract rate; and]

[(ii) multiplying the results of clause (i) of this subparagraph by the actual number of days the installment or installments are being deferred.]

[(B) Additional deferment costs. In addition to the base deferment charge authorized by this section, the holder of a retail installment sales contract may collect from the retail buyer the amount of the additional cost to the holder for:]

[(i) premiums for continuing in force any insurance coverages provided by the retail installment contract; and]

[(ii) any additional necessary official fees.]

[(C) Minimum deferment charge. The minimum deferment charge authorized under this paragraph is $1.00.]

[(D) Accrual of time price differential. For a contract using the true daily earnings method, all time price differential that will accrue on the deferred installments during the deferment period must be included in the base deferment charge. If the holder agrees to a base deferment charge that is less than the amount of time price differential that would otherwise have accrued on the deferred installments during the deferment period, then it must waive the accrued time price differential on the deferred installments for the deferment period in excess of the base deferment charge the holder agreed to. The deferment charge does not include time price differential that accrues on amounts other than the deferred installments, nor does it include time price differential that accrues outside of the deferment period.]

(e) (No change.)

(f) False, misleading, or deceptive representation. A holder may not make a false, misleading, or deceptive representation relating to a deferment charge. [For example, in a contract using the true daily earnings method, a holder may not make an offer to the retail buyer such as "Payment Holiday--Pay Only $25" if the total deferment charge, including all time price differential that the holder will charge on the deferred installment for the deferment period, exceeds $25.] If a holder makes a false, misleading, or deceptive representation regarding a deferment charge, then the deferment charge is subject to refunding under subsection (e).

§84.204.Disclosure of Equity in Retail Buyer's Trade-in Motor Vehicle.

(a) - (i) (No change.)

(j) Benefit under trade-in credit agreement. A retail seller may not include a benefit under a trade-in credit agreement in the "Dealership Allowance for Trade-In" section of the disclosure of equity standard form.

§84.205.Documentary Fee.

(a) Purpose. Under Texas Finance Code, §348.006(e), before a retail seller charges a documentary fee greater than $150 [$50], the seller must provide the OCCC with a written notification of the maximum amount of the documentary fee the seller intends to charge. The OCCC may review the amount of the documentary fee for reasonableness. This section describes the requirements for the notification and cost analysis.

(b) General requirements.

(1) $150 [$50] or less. A seller is not required to provide a notification or cost analysis to the OCCC before charging a documentary fee of $150 [$50] or less. A documentary fee of $150 or less is presumed reasonable under Texas Finance Code, §348.006(f).

[(2) Over $50, up to $150. Before charging a documentary fee greater than $50, but less than or equal to $150, a seller must provide a notification to the OCCC. A seller is not required to provide a cost analysis before charging a documentary fee in this range. The OCCC will presume a documentary fee of $150 or less to be reasonable.]

(2) [(3)] Over $150. Before charging a documentary fee greater than $150, a seller must provide a notification and a cost analysis to the OCCC.

(c) Notification.

(1) Generally. Before charging a documentary fee greater than $150 [$50], a seller must provide a written notification to the OCCC, stating the amount of the maximum documentary fee that the seller intends to charge.

(2) - (3) (No change.)

(4) Transfer of ownership. In the event of a transfer of ownership described by §84.604 of this title (relating to Transfer of License; New License Application on Transfer of Ownership), if the transferee intends to charge a documentary fee greater than $150 [$50], then the transferee must provide a documentary fee notification for each licensed location or registered office that the transferee will operate. The transferee must provide the notification no later than the 30th calendar day following the transfer of ownership. If the transferee has not filed a notification on or before the 30th calendar day following the transfer of ownership, then it must cease charging a documentary fee greater than $150 [$50]. The transferee may not charge a greater amount than the amount described in the transferor's previous notification until the transferee has provided a complete notification listing the amount that the transferee intends to charge. If the transferor did not previously provide a documentary fee notification, then the transferee may not charge a documentary fee greater than $150 [$50] until it has provided a complete notification listing the amount it intends to charge.

(5) Failure to provide notification. A seller violates this subsection if the seller:

(A) charges a documentary fee greater than $150 [$50] without first providing a complete notification to the OCCC; or

(B) (No change.)

(6) Restitution and order to lower documentary fee. If a seller violates this subsection, then the OCCC may take an action, including ordering the seller to do one or more of the following:

(A) - (C) (No change.)

(D) cease charging a documentary fee greater than $150 [$50] for a specified period of time.

(7) Restitution amount. If a seller does not provide a complete notification to the OCCC, then the amount of restitution for violating this subsection will not exceed the amount of the documentary fee the seller charged or received minus $150 [$50] (for each buyer). If the seller provides a notification but charges a documentary fee greater than the amount described in the notification, then the restitution for violating this subsection will not exceed the amount of the documentary fee the seller charged or received minus the amount of its filing (for each buyer).

(d) Cost analysis.

(1) - (5) (No change.)

(6) Restitution and order to lower documentary fee. If a seller violates this subsection by charging a documentary fee over $150 that is not supported by a complete cost analysis or that includes costs that are not reasonable, then the OCCC may order the seller to provide restitution to affected buyers and lower its documentary fee prospectively. For each buyer, the restitution for violating this subsection will not exceed the amount of the documentary fee the seller charged or received, minus $150, minus other restitution paid under subsection (c)(6) - (7) of this section. In addition, the OCCC may order a seller to cease charging a documentary fee greater than $150 [$50] for a specified period of time if the seller violates this subsection.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on June 16, 2017.

TRD-201702358

Leslie L. Pettijohn

Commissioner

Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner

Earliest possible date of adoption: July 30, 2017

For further information, please call: (512) 936-7621


SUBCHAPTER C. INSURANCE AND DEBT CANCELLATION AGREEMENTS

7 TAC §§84.302, 84.308, 84.309

All of the amendments are proposed under Texas Finance Code, §11.304, which authorizes the commission to adopt rules to ensure compliance with Title 4 of the Texas Finance Code. Additionally, Texas Finance Code, §348.513 grants the commission the authority to adopt rules to enforce the motor vehicle installment sales chapter.

The rule changes in §84.205 concerning documentary fees are proposed under Texas Finance Code, §348.006(f), as amended by HB 2949, which authorizes the commission to adopt a rule establishing a documentary fee amount presumed to be reasonable, and Texas Finance Code, §348.006(h), which authorizes the commission to adopt rules necessary to enforce §348.006.

The statutory provisions affected by the proposed rule changes are contained in Texas Finance Code, Chapters 345, 348, and 354.

§84.302.Authorized Credit Insurance and Debt Cancellation Agreements.

(a) - (g) (No change.)

(h) Debt cancellation agreements. Debt cancellation agreements are not credit insurance. For retail installment sales transactions involving ordinary vehicles, debt cancellation agreements that cancel all or part of the retail buyer's obligation to repay the retail installment sales contract based upon the occurrence of death, disability, or unemployment of the retail buyer are not authorized to be sold or written with a Chapter 348 motor vehicle retail installment sales contract. A debt cancellation agreement may be offered in connection with a Chapter 348 motor vehicle retail installment sales transaction and included as a term of, or modification to, the retail installment sales contract if the debt cancellation agreement is written in compliance with:

(1) Texas Finance Code, §348.124 and §84.308 of this title; or

(2) Texas Finance Code, Chapter 354 [Chapter 348, Subchapter G].

§84.308.Debt Cancellation Agreements Not Requiring Insurance.

(a) Purpose and scope. The Texas Finance Code allows a debt cancellation agreement to be included in a motor vehicle retail installment sales contract involving an ordinary vehicle subject to Texas Finance Code, Chapter 348 as an itemized charge. This section outlines the parameters under which a retail seller or holder may provide a debt cancellation agreement for total loss or theft of an ordinary vehicle in connection with a Chapter 348 retail installment sales contract. This section applies only to debt cancellation agreements that do not require insurance coverage. This section does not apply to a debt cancellation agreement under Texas Finance Code, Chapter 354 [Subchapter G of Chapter 348].

(b) - (k) (No change.)

§84.309.Debt Cancellation Agreements Requiring Insurance.

(a) Purpose and scope. This section applies to a debt cancellation agreement described by Texas Finance Code, Chapter 354, that includes insurance coverage as part of the retail buyer's responsibility to the holder [, as provided by Texas Finance Code, §348.601(a)]. Debt cancellation agreements must be submitted to the OCCC for approval, as provided by Texas Finance Code, §354.005(a) [§348.604(a)]. The denial of a debt cancellation agreement may be appealed to the Finance Commission of Texas, as provided by Texas Finance Code, §354.005(d) [§348.604(e)]. This section describes the requirements for submitting a debt cancellation agreement to the OCCC and the requirements for appealing the denial of a debt cancellation agreement to the commission.

(b) - (c) (No change.)

(d) OCCC's notice of approval or denial. No later than the 45th day after the OCCC receives a debt cancellation agreement submission, the OCCC will send a notice of approval or a notice of denial to the person who submitted the agreement, as provided by Texas Finance Code, §354.005(b) [§348.604(b)]. On the written request of the person who submitted the agreement, the OCCC may agree in writing to extend the approval period for an additional 45 days. The date of approval or denial is the date on which the OCCC sends the notice of approval or denial. The OCCC may deny approval of a debt cancellation agreement if the agreement excludes language required by Texas Finance Code, §354.003 [§348.602] and §354.004 [§348.603], or if it contains any inconsistent or misleading provisions.

(e) (No change.)

(f) Contested case. If a person appeals the denial of a debt cancellation agreement under subsection (e), then the appeal will be a contested case under the Administrative Procedure Act, Texas Government Code, Chapter 2001, and the rules of procedure applicable under §9.1(a) of this title (relating to Application, Construction, and Definitions). The burden of proof is on the appellant to show that the agreement should have been approved under Texas Finance Code, §354.005 [§348.604].

(g) - (i) (No change.)

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on June 16, 2017.

TRD-201702359

Leslie L. Pettijohn

Commissioner

Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner

Earliest possible date of adoption: July 30, 2017

For further information, please call: (512) 936-7621


SUBCHAPTER G. EXAMINATIONS

7 TAC §§84.707 - 84.709

All of the amendments are proposed under Texas Finance Code, §11.304, which authorizes the commission to adopt rules to ensure compliance with Title 4 of the Texas Finance Code. Additionally, Texas Finance Code, §348.513 grants the commission the authority to adopt rules to enforce the motor vehicle installment sales chapter.

The rule changes in §84.205 concerning documentary fees are proposed under Texas Finance Code, §348.006(f), as amended by HB 2949, which authorizes the commission to adopt a rule establishing a documentary fee amount presumed to be reasonable, and Texas Finance Code, §348.006(h), which authorizes the commission to adopt rules necessary to enforce §348.006.

The statutory provisions affected by the proposed rule changes are contained in Texas Finance Code, Chapters 345, 348, and 354.

§84.707.Files and Records Required (Retail Sellers Assigning Retail Installment Sales Contracts).

(a) - (c) (No change.)

(d) Records required.

(1) (No change.)

(2) Retail installment sales transaction file. A licensee must maintain a paper or imaged copy of a retail installment sales transaction file for each individual retail installment sales contract or be able to produce the same information within a reasonable amount of time. The retail installment sales transaction file must contain documents which show the licensee's compliance with applicable law. The required documents must show the licensee's compliance with Texas Finance Code, Chapter 348 and would accordingly include applicable state and federal laws and regulations, including the Truth in Lending Act. If a substantially equivalent electronic record for any of the following records exists, a paper copy of the record does not have to be included in the retail installment sales transaction file if the electronic record can be accessed upon request. The retail installment sales transaction file must include copies of the following records or documents, unless otherwise specified:

(A) - (M) (No change.)

(N) for a retail installment sales transaction involving the sale of a trade-in credit agreement under Texas Finance Code, §348.125:

(i) a copy of the trade-in credit agreement and any written notice or disclosure provided to the retail buyer;

(ii) evidence of the contractual liability reimbursement policy in effect at the time of the trade-in credit agreement, as required by Texas Finance Code, §348.125(c); and

(iii) documentation of any refund provided upon cancellation of a trade-in credit agreement.

(O) for a retail installment sales transaction in which a retail buyer requests or receives a benefit under a trade-in credit agreement under Texas Finance Code, §348.125:

(i) a copy of the trade-in credit agreement;

(ii) evidence of the amount of any credit applied under the trade-in credit agreement; and

(iii) any documentation used to process a claim, including:

(I) any proof of insurance settlement documents obtained from the retail buyer;

(II) any accident record or vehicle condition report obtained to process a claim; and

(III) any supplemental claim records supporting the approval or denial of the claim.

(P) for a retail installment sales transaction in which a retail buyer requests or receives a benefit under a depreciation benefit optional member program under Texas Occupations Code, §1304.003(a)(2)(C):

(i) evidence of the amount of any credit applied under the depreciation benefit optional member program; and

(ii) any documentation obtained by the licensee to process the benefit.

(3) - (5) (No change.)

(6) Trade-in credit agreement records. Each licensee that enters a trade-in credit agreement or provides a benefit in connection with a trade-in credit agreement must:

(A) maintain a copy of any contractual liability reimbursement policy related to the trade-in credit agreement, as required by Texas Finance Code, §348.125(c); and

(B) maintain a register or be able to generate a report, paper or electronic, that reflects agreements that were either satisfied or denied. This register or report must show the name of the retail buyer, the account number, and the date of satisfaction or denial.

(7) [(6)] Retention and availability of records. All books and records required by this subsection must be available for inspection at any time by Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner staff, and must be retained for a period of four years from the date of the contract, two years from the date of the final entry made thereon by the licensee, whichever is later, or a different period of time if required by federal law. For licensees who assign retail installment sales contracts, the final entry may be the date of the assignment if the licensee makes no other entries on the account after the assignment. Upon notification of an examination pursuant to Texas Finance Code, §348.514(f), the licensee must be able to produce or access required books and records within a reasonable time at the licensed location or registered office specified on the license. The records required by this subsection must be available or accessible at an office in the state designated by the licensee except when the retail installment sales transactions are transferred under an agreement which gives the commissioner access to the documents. Documents may be maintained out of state if the licensee has in writing acknowledged responsibility for either making the records available within the state for examination or by acknowledging responsibility for additional examination costs associated with examinations conducted out of state.

§84.708.Files and Records Required (Retail Sellers Collecting Installments on Retail Installment Sales Contracts).

(a) - (d) (No change.)

(e) Records required.

(1) (No change.)

(2) Retail installment sales transaction file. A licensee must maintain a paper or imaged copy of a retail installment sales transaction file for each individual retail installment sales contract or be able to produce the same information within a reasonable amount of time. The retail installment sales transaction file must contain documents which show the licensee's compliance with applicable law. The required documents must show the licensee's compliance with Texas Finance Code, Chapter 348 and would accordingly include applicable state and federal laws and regulations, including the Truth in Lending Act. If a substantially equivalent electronic record for any of the following records exists, a paper copy of the record does not have to be included in the retail installment sales transaction file if the electronic record can be accessed upon request. The retail installment sales transaction file must include copies of the following records or documents, unless otherwise specified:

(A) - (Q) (No change.)

(R) for a retail installment sales transaction in which the licensee agrees to defer all or part of one or more payments:

(i) a copy of any written deferment agreement; and

(ii) any written notice to the retail buyer regarding a deferment under Texas Finance Code, §348.114(c).

(S) for a retail installment sales transaction involving the sale of a trade-in credit agreement under Texas Finance Code, §348.125:

(i) a copy of the trade-in credit agreement and any written notice or disclosure provided to the retail buyer;

(ii) evidence of the contractual liability reimbursement policy in effect at the time of the trade-in credit agreement, as required by Texas Finance Code, §348.125(c); and

(iii) documentation of any refund provided upon cancellation of a trade-in credit agreement.

(T) for a retail installment sales transaction in which a retail buyer requests or receives a benefit under a trade-in credit agreement under Texas Finance Code, §348.125:

(i) a copy of the trade-in credit agreement;

(ii) evidence of the amount of any credit applied under the trade-in credit agreement; and

(iii) any documentation used to process a claim, including:

(I) any proof of insurance settlement documents obtained from the retail buyer;

(II) any accident record or vehicle condition report obtained to process a claim; and

(III) any supplemental claim records supporting the approval or denial of the claim.

(U) for a retail installment sales transaction in which a retail buyer requests or receives a benefit under a depreciation benefit optional member program under Texas Occupations Code, §1304.003(a)(2)(C):

(i) evidence of the amount of any credit applied under the depreciation benefit optional member program; and

(ii) any documentation obtained by the licensee to process the benefit.

(3) - (8) (No change.)

(9) Trade-in credit agreement records. Each licensee that enters a trade-in credit agreement or provides a benefit in connection with a trade-in credit agreement must:

(A) maintain a copy of any contractual liability reimbursement policy related to the trade-in credit agreement, as required by Texas Finance Code, §348.125(c); and

(B) maintain a register or be able to generate a report, paper or electronic, that reflects agreements that were either satisfied or denied. This register or report must show the name of the retail buyer, the account number, and the date of satisfaction or denial.

(10) [(9)] Retention and availability of records. All books and records required by this subsection must be available for inspection at any time by Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner staff, and must be retained for a period of four years from the date of the contract, two years from the date of the final entry made thereon, whichever is later, or a different period of time if required by federal law. Upon notification of an examination pursuant to Texas Finance Code, §348.514(f), the licensee must be able to produce or access required books and records within a reasonable time at the licensed location or registered office specified on the license. The records required by this subsection must be available or accessible at an office in the state designated by the licensee except when the retail installment sales transactions are transferred under an agreement which gives the commissioner access to the documents. Documents may be maintained out of state if the licensee has in writing acknowledged responsibility for either making the records available within the state for examination or by acknowledging responsibility for additional examination costs associated with examinations conducted out of state.

(f) (No change.)

§84.709.Files and Records Required (Holders Taking Assignment of Retail Installment Sales Contracts).

(a) - (d) (No change.)

(e) Records required.

(1) (No change.)

(2) Retail installment sales transaction file. A licensee must maintain a paper or imaged copy of a retail installment sales transaction file for each individual retail installment sales contract or be able to produce the same information within a reasonable amount of time. The retail installment sales transaction file must contain documents which show the licensee's compliance with applicable law. The required documents must show the licensee's compliance with Texas Finance Code, Chapter 348 and would accordingly include applicable state and federal laws and regulations, including the Truth in Lending Act. If a substantially equivalent electronic record for any of the following records exists, a paper copy of the record does not have to be included in the retail installment sales transaction file if the electronic record can be accessed upon request. The retail installment sales transaction file must include copies of the following records or documents, unless otherwise specified:

(A) - (I) (No change.)

(J) for a retail installment sales transaction in which the licensee agrees to defer all or part of one or more payments:

(i) a copy of any written deferment agreement; and

(ii) any written notice to the retail buyer regarding a deferment under Texas Finance Code, §348.114(c).

(3) Account record for each retail installment sales contract (including payment and collection contact history). A separate paper, or an electronic record, must be maintained covering each retail installment sales contract. The paper or electronic account record must be readily available by reference to either a retail buyer's name or account number.

(A) Required information. The account record for each retail installment sales contract must contain at least the following information, unless stated otherwise:

(i) - (iv) (No change.)

(v) for a retail installment sales contract where the licensee receives or issues a refund of insurance charges, debt cancellation agreements or authorized ancillary products, a licensee is responsible for maintaining sufficient documentation of any refund including final entries and is also responsible for providing refunds to the retail buyer or correctly applying refunds to the retail buyer's account. Refund amounts must be itemized to show:

(I) - (IV) (No change.)

(vi) (No change.)

(B) - (C) (No change.)

(4) - (9) (No change.)

(f) (No change.)

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on June 16, 2017.

TRD-201702360

Leslie L. Pettijohn

Commissioner

Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner

Earliest possible date of adoption: July 30, 2017

For further information, please call: (512) 936-7621


SUBCHAPTER H. RETAIL INSTALLMENT SALES CONTRACT PROVISIONS

7 TAC §84.804, §84.808

All of the amendments are proposed under Texas Finance Code, §11.304, which authorizes the commission to adopt rules to ensure compliance with Title 4 of the Texas Finance Code. Additionally, Texas Finance Code, §348.513 grants the commission the authority to adopt rules to enforce the motor vehicle installment sales chapter.

The rule changes in §84.205 concerning documentary fees are proposed under Texas Finance Code, §348.006(f), as amended by HB 2949, which authorizes the commission to adopt a rule establishing a documentary fee amount presumed to be reasonable, and Texas Finance Code, §348.006(h), which authorizes the commission to adopt rules necessary to enforce §348.006.

The statutory provisions affected by the proposed rule changes are contained in Texas Finance Code, Chapters 345, 348, and 354.

§84.804.Disclosures and Contract Provisions Required by Texas Finance Code.

A retail installment sales contract must include all provisions required by Texas Finance Code, Chapter 348, and other law. The contract must include the following disclosures and provisions, as applicable:

(1) - (3) (No change.)

(4) The amounts of any itemized charges not included in the cash price, as required by Texas Finance Code, §348.102(a)(7). Itemized charges may include the following charges as applicable and any other charges that are authorized to be included in the itemized charges under Texas Finance Code, Chapter 348:

(A) - (P) (No change.)

(Q) Automobile club membership; [.]

(R) Trade-in credit agreement;

(S) Depreciation benefit optional member program.

(5) - (8) (No change.)

§84.808.Model Clauses.

The following model clauses provide the plain language equivalent of provisions found in contracts subject to Texas Finance Code, Chapter 348.

(1) - (7) (No change.)

(8) Itemization of amount financed. The creditor drafting the contract is given considerable flexibility regarding the itemization of amount financed disclosure so long as the itemization of amount financed disclosure complies with the Truth in Lending Act. As an example, a creditor may disclose the manufacturer's rebate either as: a component of the downpayment; or a deduction from the cash price of the motor vehicle. The model contract provision for the itemization of the amount financed discloses the manufacturer's rebate as a component of the downpayment. If the creditor elected to disclose the manufacturer's rebate as a deduction from the cash price of the motor vehicle, the cash price component of the itemization of amount financed would be amended to reflect the dollar amount of the manufacturer's rebate being deducted from the cash price of the motor vehicle.

(A) - (E) (No change.)

(F) Benefit under trade-in credit agreement. A benefit provided under a trade-in credit agreement must be included in the downpayment, and must be listed in the line labeled "other (describe)," with a description such as "trade-in credit agreement benefit."

(G) Benefit under depreciation benefit optional member program. A benefit provided under a depreciation benefit optional member program must be included in the downpayment, and must be listed in the line labeled "other (describe)," with a description such as "depreciation benefit."

(9) - (45) (No change.)

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on June 16, 2017.

TRD-201702361

Leslie L. Pettijohn

Commissioner

Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner

Earliest possible date of adoption: July 30, 2017

For further information, please call: (512) 936-7621


CHAPTER 86. RETAIL CREDITORS

SUBCHAPTER B. RETAIL INSTALLMENT CONTRACT

7 TAC §86.202

The Finance Commission of Texas (commission) proposes new §86.202 in 7 TAC, Chapter 86, concerning Retail Creditors.

In general, the purpose of the new rule in 7 TAC, Chapter 86 is to implement a bill that the Texas Legislature passed in the 2017 legislative session: SB 1052. The proposed new rule relates to debt cancellation agreements for Chapter 345, Retail Installment Transactions.

SB 1052 moves provisions regarding debt cancellation agreements that require insurance from Chapter 348 to a new Chapter 354 of the Texas Finance Code. The bill allows these agreements to be provided in a Chapter 345 retail installment transaction for certain covered vehicles, including a motorcycle, all-terrain vehicle, snowmobile, camper, boat, or personal watercraft trailer. The bill also allows the OCCC to agree to extend the 45-day approval period for debt cancellation agreements by an additional 45 days, and specifies refunding and recordkeeping requirements when a debt cancellation agreement terminates due to early payoff of a retail installment contract.

The agency circulated an early draft of proposed changes to interested stakeholders. The agency then held an online stakeholder meeting where attendees asked questions through a webinar. The agency did not receive any informal written precomments other than the questions received through the webinar.

The purpose of the new rule is provided in the following paragraphs.

Proposed new §86.202 provides that a debt cancellation agreement for a retail installment contract involving the purchase of a covered vehicle described by Texas Finance Code, §354.001(2), including a motorcycle, recreational vehicle, all-terrain vehicle, camper, boat, personal watercraft, or personal watercraft trailer, is subject to the submission requirements and appeal procedures of §84.309. This new rule is intended to implement SB 1052, which allows debt cancellation agreements to be provided in a Chapter 345 retail installment transaction for certain covered vehicles, including a motorcycle, all-terrain vehicle, snowmobile, camper, boat, or personal watercraft trailer. The agency will begin accepting submissions of debt cancellation agreements for these Chapter 345 covered vehicles starting July 1, 2017.

During the stakeholder meeting, one attendee asked when registrants may start offering debt cancellation agreements for Chapter 345 covered vehicles. These agreements are not authorized until SB 1052 goes into effect on September 1, 2017. In addition, any Chapter 345 debt cancellation agreement must be approved by the agency before a seller uses it.

Leslie L. Pettijohn, Consumer Credit Commissioner, has determined that for the first five-year period the proposed new rule is in effect there will be no fiscal implications for state or local government as a result of administering the rule.

Commissioner Pettijohn also has determined that for each year of the first five years the new rule is in effect, the public benefit anticipated as a result of the rule will be that the commission's rules will be more easily understood by registrants required to comply with the rules, will be more easily enforced, will be consistent with legislation recently passed by the legislature, and will provide guidance and clarity to retail creditors.

Additional economic costs may be incurred by a person required to comply with this proposal. The purpose of proposed new §86.202 is partly to specify that form submitters for debt cancellation agreements covering Chapter 345 vehicles must comply with current §84.309 and pay a $250 submission fee. The $250 amount, which the commission adopted in 2016, is based on the average time spent by OCCC employees to process the submission, review the agreement, and draft follow-up correspondence. The OCCC believes that this fee is necessary and prudent to recover the cost of the agency's resources to review these agreements within the 45-day statutory deadline.

It is important to note that debt cancellation agreements are an optional product. Registrants have the option of not offering debt cancellation agreements, in which case there will be no costs incurred for those registrants. For Chapter 345 registrants who opt to provide debt cancellation agreements in connection with their retail installment contracts, there would be an initial economic cost consisting of the $250 submission fee in §84.309(c), as provided by proposed §86.202. The agency anticipates that the fees charged in connection with debt cancellation agreements will cover costs of complying with the recordkeeping requirements, resulting in a neutral cost to registrants required to comply with the proposal.

Overall, the agency anticipates that any costs involved to comply with the proposal will be minimal for most registrants. However, due to several factors resulting in varying, uncertain, and unpredictable costs, the agency would like to invite comment from registrants on any costs involved to comply with the proposal, as well as any alternatives to lessen those costs while achieving the purpose of the proposal. Aside from the previously outlined costs to comply with debt cancellation agreement submission fees, there will be no other effects on individuals required to comply with the new rule as proposed.

The agency is not aware of any adverse economic effect on small or micro-businesses resulting from this proposal. But in order to obtain more complete information concerning the economic effect of the new rule, the agency invites comments from interested stakeholders and the public on any economic impacts on small businesses, as well as any alternative methods of achieving the purpose of the proposal while minimizing adverse impacts on small businesses.

Comments on the proposal may be submitted in writing to Laurie Hobbs, Assistant General Counsel, Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner, 2601 North Lamar Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78705-4207 or by email to laurie.hobbs@occc.texas.gov. To be considered, a written comment must be received on or before 5:00 p.m. central time on the 31st day after the date the proposal is published in the Texas Register. At the conclusion of business on the 31st day after the proposal is published in the Texas Register, no further written comments will be considered or accepted by the commission.

The new rule is proposed under Texas Finance Code, §11.304, which authorizes the commission to adopt rules to ensure compliance with Title 4 of the Texas Finance Code.

Under proposed new §86.202, a person submitting a debt cancellation agreement for a Chapter 345 covered vehicle will be required to pay a filing fee under current §84.309(c). This new rule is authorized under Texas Finance Code, §14.107, which authorizes the commission to establish reasonable and necessary fees for carrying out the commissioner's powers and duties under Chapter 348.

The statutory provisions affected by the proposed new rule are contained in Texas Finance Code, Chapters 345, 348, and 354.

§86.202.Debt Cancellation Agreements.

A debt cancellation agreement for a retail installment contract involving the purchase of a covered vehicle described by Texas Finance Code, §354.001(2), including a motorcycle, recreational vehicle, all-terrain vehicle, camper, boat, personal watercraft, or personal watercraft trailer, is subject to the submission requirements and appeal procedures of §84.309 of this title (relating to Debt Cancellation Agreements Requiring Insurance).

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on June 16, 2017.

TRD-201702362

Leslie L. Pettijohn

Commissioner

Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner

Earliest possible date of adoption: July 30, 2017

For further information, please call: (512) 936-7621