At the annual Mortgage Bankers Association conference in Washington, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray said lenders' concerns about meeting the new mortgage rules are warranted, but they should not worry over legal protections in complying with the regulations.

"We understand this poses a challenge for industry, just as the writing of such a substantial set of mortgage rules by last January posed a significant challenge for our new agency," he said at the conference on Tuesday. "Had we failed to do so, many key statutory provisions that Congress had enacted in Title XIV of the Dodd-Frank Act would have taken effect in their own right, which everyone recognizes would have been much harder on industry and much worse for the mortgage market."

In the speech, Cordrary said the agency's supervision team "will be sensitive" to lenders as long as they make efforts to be in compliance by Jan. 10.

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