Maria T. Vullo, formerly New York's executive deputy attorney general for Economic Justice, was nominated by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to serve as superintendent of the New York State Department of Financial Services.
Vullo previously oversaw the Bureaus of Investor Protection, Antitrust, Real Estate Finance, Consumer Frauds and Internet. She is currently of counsel at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP.
The New York DFS has cracked down on debt collection by issuing a series of regulations in recent years. In 2014, the agency released a final rule regulating debt collection practices in the state, which took effect in March 2015. The rules require collectors to, among other things, produce loan documents or a court judgment if requested. The rules supported by Cuomo's administration, also require collectors to account for all interest and fees included in the debt and inform consumers when the statute of limitations has expired. In June 2015, six months after the release of the new regulations, DFS clarified whether Fair Debt Collection Practices Act disclosures and New York State disclosures can be included in the same communication to debtors, determining both can be provided as long as the disclosure required by the DFS rule is timely and clearly presented.The additional guidance reviews several other questions, including those related to “substantiation” legal requirements and concerns about purchased debts. The DFS clarified that if substantiation is requested by the consumer but can't be provided, a violation of the regulation could be avoided if the consumer’s debt is forgiven.
Benjamin Lawsky, superintendent of DFS at the time, said the regulations would help guide an industry that "has gone largely unregulated despite thousands of consumer complaints each year.”