Government Affairs: Nation

May 9, 2019

NAR Supports AHP Appeal

On May 1, NAR sent a letter to U.S. Department of Justice supporting an appeal of the ruling issued by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia that struck down parts of the Department of Labor’s final rule on Association Health Plans (AHP).

The AHP rule removes regulatory barriers that make it possible for self-employed individuals and small employers to purchase health insurance through a professional or trade associations, providing much-needed savings in an increasingly expensive market. The Department of Labor’s efforts expanding AHPs has already been successful, with over a thousand real estate professionals and their families enrolled in new group health plans.

In the letter, NAR encouraged the Department of Justice to appeal the court’s decision and defend the ability of self-employed REALTORS® across the country to have the freedom and flexibility to choose a health insurance plan that best fits their needs.

CFPB Updates Investigation Process

As authorized by the Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) may issue investigational subpoenas known as Civil Investigative Demands (CIDs) when looking into potential violations of consumer finance laws. In response to extensive public feedback and an inspector general report, the CFPB is updating how it conducts these investigations to provide more information about the potentially wrongful conduct.

NAR provided feedback to the CFPB on CIDs last year, requesting improved communication with investigators, more clarity in those communications, more narrowly tailored requests, and better understanding of the underlying laws being investigated by Bureau staff, among other things. Because of the amount of resources, it takes to comply with CIDs, which are especially burdensome on small businesses, these potential changes by the Bureau are welcome steps for future investigations.

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