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Code of Virginia
Title 6.2. Financial Institutions and Services
Chapter .
7/31/2021

Chapter 23. Safe Deposit Boxes.

§ 6.2-2300. Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context requires otherwise:

"Box" or "safe deposit box" means any safe or box that is available for rent within the vaults of a company.

"Company" means a bank, trust company, or other entity conducting the business of renting safe deposit boxes.

"Lessee" means the person renting a box from a company.

2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2301. Access to joint safe deposit box.

When a box is rented from any company transacting business in the Commonwealth under the name of two or more persons with (i) the right of access being given to either or (ii) access to either the survivor or survivors of such persons, any one or more of such persons, whether the other or others be living or not shall have the right of access to the box and may remove therefrom its contents. In the case of such a removal, the company shall be exempt from any liability for permitting such person access thereto.

Code 1950, § 6-264; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-332; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2302. Limited access to safe deposit box upon death of lessee.

A. Upon (i) the death of the sole lessee of a box or (ii) the death of a lessee of a box rented under the name of two or more persons upon proof satisfactory to the company that no then co-lessee is reasonably available for access to the box, the company may permit limited access to the box by the spouse or next of kin of the deceased lessee, a court clerk, or other interested person for the limited purpose of looking for a will or other testamentary instruments.

B. The company may require proof of death as it deems necessary prior to permitting access to a box.

C. Access to a box shall be under the supervision of a designated officer or employee of the company, and nothing shall be removed from the box except the will or testamentary instrument for transmission to the appropriate clerk.

D. The company shall (i) make a photocopy of any document removed from a box pursuant to this section, (ii) place the copy in the box prior to delivering the original to any person, and (iii) not be liable except for acting in bad faith or for permitting the removal from the safe deposit box of items other than the will or other testamentary instrument of the deceased lessee.

1984, c. 446, § 6.1-332.1; 2002, c. 312; 2003, c. 269; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2303. Limited access to safe deposit box upon incapacity of lessee.

A. Upon receiving a letter from a licensed physician that in his professional opinion an individual, who is the sole lessee of a box, is incapable of receiving and evaluating information effectively or responding to people, events, or environments to such an extent that the individual lacks the capacity:

1. To manage property or financial affairs or provide for his support or for the support of his legal dependents without the assistance or protection of another, the company may permit access to such box for the limited purpose of looking for a power of attorney executed by the lessee that relates to the management of his property or financial affairs; or

2. To meet the essential requirements for his health, care, safety, or therapeutic needs without the assistance or protection of another, the company may permit access to the box for the limited purpose of looking for an advance medical directive executed by the lessee.

B. Such access shall only be granted to the lessee's guardian, conservator, spouse or next of kin or to a person asserting a knowledge or belief:

1. If the access is sought pursuant to subdivision A 1, that he is named as an agent in a power of attorney believed to be in the box; or

2. If the access is sought pursuant to subdivision A 2, that he is named as an agent in an advance medical directive believed to be in the box.

C. Access to a box shall be under the supervision of a designated officer or employee of the company, and nothing shall be removed from the box except (i) if the access is sought pursuant to subdivision A 1, the power of attorney for transmission to a person named as agent therein or (ii) if the access is sought pursuant to subdivision A 2, the advance medical directive for transmission to a person named as agent therein or in the absence of such a person, to the lessee's attending physician to be made a part of the lessee's medical records.

D. If the box is co-leased, the company may permit entry into the box by the same persons and under the same circumstances and terms as specified above, upon proof satisfactory to it that the then co-lessees are not reasonably available for access to the box.

E. The company shall (i) make a photocopy of any document removed from a box pursuant to this section, (ii) place the copy in the box prior to delivering the original to any person, and (iii) not be liable except for acting in bad faith or for permitting the removal of other items from the box.

1984, c. 446, § 6.1-332.1; 2002, c. 312; 2003, c. 269; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2304. Duty to deny access to safe deposit boxes under certain conditions.

A. As used in this section, unless the context requires otherwise:

"Creditor" means (i) a judgment creditor, (ii) a plaintiff who has obtained a pre-judgment attachment order, or (iii) an appropriate federal or state tax official.

"Defendant" means the lessee of a box who is named as defendant, judgment debtor, or taxpayer in a notice of proceeding.

"Notice of proceeding" means a notice of (i) lien of fieri facias, (ii) other process under §§ 8.01-474, 8.01-478, 8.01-479, 8.01-501 through 8.01-504, and § 58.1-1804, 58.1-2020, or 58.1-3952, (iii) levy for federal taxes, or (iv) attachment that states the office of the company where a box rented by the defendant is located.

B. If a company is served with a notice of proceeding with respect to a box, the company shall deny the defendant access to the box leased in the name of the defendant unless otherwise directed by an appropriate court or the judgment creditor.

C. If the notice of proceeding names less than all of the co-lessees of a box and:

1. If the rental contract so provides, the company may deny all co-lessees access to the box, unless otherwise directed by an appropriate court or the judgment creditor. The company may allow access to such co-lessee if in so doing the company complies with the requirements of subdivision 2 as if the rental contract did not provide for denial of access to co-lessees not named in the notice of proceeding; and

2. If the rental contract does not provide for denial of access to co-lessees not named in the notice of proceeding, the company shall not deny access to any co-lessee not named in the notice of proceeding if the co-lessee (i) is given notice by the company that if the co-lessee knowingly removes from the box any property subject to the notice of proceeding, the co-lessee shall be deemed guilty of larceny, (ii) is given a copy of the notice of proceeding, and (iii) signs and delivers to the company a written acknowledgment of receipt of such notices.

Code 1950, § 6-264.1; 1956, c. 82; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-333; 1968, c. 574; 1992, c. 17; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2305. Notice to lessee upon nonpayment of rent.

Whenever any amount due for the use of any box of any company shall remain unpaid for a period of one year, the company may, at the expiration of such period, send to the lessee of the box a notice in writing by registered or certified mail, postage prepaid, at his last known post-office address, notifying the lessee that if the amount due for the rental of the box is not paid within 60 days from the date of sending the notice, the company will cause the box to be opened and the contents thereof to be inventoried, sealed, and placed in one of the general safes or boxes of the company.

Code 1950, § 6-263; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-331; 1993, c. 62; 1997, c. 129; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2306. Opening box; marking contents.

Upon the expiration of 60 days from the date of mailing the notice required by § 6.2-2305 and the failure within such period of the lessee of the box according to the records of the company to pay the amount due for the rental thereof, together with any charges for which the rental agreement provides, the company may, in the presence of two company employees, one of whom shall be a notary public, cause the box to be opened and the contents thereof, if any, to be removed, inventoried, and sealed up by the notary public in a package. The notary public shall distinctly mark upon the package the name of the lessee of the box according to the records of the company and the date of removal of the property.

Code 1950, § 6-265; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-334; 2003, c. 437; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2307. Disposition of contents.

When a package has been marked for identification by a notary public as required under the provisions of § 6.2-2306, it shall, in the presence of an officer of the company, be placed by the notary public in one of the general safes or boxes of the company. The lessee shall be liable to the company for storage of the package at a rental rate that does not exceed the original rental of the box that was opened. The package shall remain in such general safe or box for a period of not less than two years, unless sooner removed by the lessee.

Code 1950, § 6-266; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-335; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2308. Certificate of notary public.

A. The notary public who placed a package in one of the general safes or boxes of the company as required under the provisions of § 6.2-2307 shall, upon doing so, file with the company a certificate, under seal, which shall set out the date of the opening of such box, the name of the lessee of the box, and a list of the contents, if any. The certificate shall be sworn to by the notary public and shall be prima facie evidence of the facts therein set forth in all legal proceedings wherein evidence of such facts would be admissible.

B. The company shall mail a copy of such certificate within 10 days after its filing, to the lessee of the box at his last known post-office address, by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested. The company shall include in its mailing of the copy of the certificate a notice that the contents will be kept, at the expense of the lessee, in a general safe or box in the vaults of the company for a period of not less than two years, unless sooner removed by the lessee.

Code 1950, § 6-267; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-336; 1997, c. 129; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2309. Subsequent right of lessee to contents.

At any time after the mailing of the notice as required by § 6.2-2308 and before the expiration of two years, the lessee may require the delivery of the contents of the box as shown by the certificate, upon payment of all rentals due at the time of opening the box, the cost of opening the box, the fees of the notary public for issuing his certificate thereon, and all charges accrued during the period the contents remained in the general safe or box of the company, together with any charges for which the rental agreement provides.

Code 1950, § 6-268; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-337; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2310. Sale of contents after two years.

A. After the expiration of two years from the time of mailing the certificate provided for in § 6.2-2308, if the lessee has not obtained delivery of the contents, the company shall:

1. Mail in a securely closed envelope, by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, addressed to the lessee at his last known post-office address, a notice stating that two years have elapsed since the opening of the box and the mailing of the certificate, and that the company will sell all the property or articles of value set out in the certificate at a time and place stated in the notice, which time shall be not less than 60 days after the date of mailing such notice. The notice shall also state the amount due for rental, up to the time of opening the box, the cost of opening the box, and the further cost of safekeeping of its contents for the period since the opening of the safe or box; and

2. Publish twice a notice of the time and place of the sale, not more than 20 days prior to the sale, in a newspaper published in the locality where the sale will be held. If there is no newspaper published in the locality, then in a newspaper published in the locality nearest thereto having a newspaper.

B. Unless the lessee pays, on or before the day stated in the notice, all such sums, and all the charges accruing to the time of payment, together with any charges for which the rental agreement provides, the company may sell all the property or articles of value set out in such certificate for cash, at public auction, at the time and place stated in such notice.

Code 1950, § 6-269; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-338; 1997, c. 129; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2311. Disposition of proceeds of sale.

From the proceeds of any sale held pursuant to the provisions of § 6.2-2310, the company shall deduct all its charges, as stated in such notice, together with any further charges that shall have accrued since the mailing thereof, including reasonable expenses for notices, advertising and sale, together with any charges for which the rental agreement provides. The balance, if any, of such proceeds shall be deposited to the credit of the lessee and shall be paid to the lessee or his assignee or legal representative, on demand and upon production of satisfactory evidence of identity. The company shall be liable to the lessee for interest on any balance so deposited at the annual rate of three percent.

Code 1950, § 6-270; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-339; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2312. Rental for storage unpaid for three years.

If a company has received for safekeeping from any person any package or box to be stored in its general vault, and the rental for such storage shall have remained unpaid for a period of three years, the company shall have the right to open such package or box and to have the contents thereof inventoried, upon compliance substantially with the procedure as to witnesses, notices, and certificates provided for the opening of any box in §§ 6.2-2305 through 6.2-2308. If the rental or other charges for the safekeeping of such package or box and the charges incident to the opening of the same remain unpaid for a period of two years from the date of such opening, the contents thereof may be sold upon compliance substantially with the procedure provided for the sale of the contents of any box in § 6.2-2310, and the proceeds of such sale shall be treated in the same manner provided for the treatment of the proceeds of sale of the contents of any box in § 6.2-2311.

Code 1950, § 6-273; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-342; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2313. Documents having pretium affectionis.

Whenever the contents of any box opened under the provisions of this chapter shall consist either wholly or in part of documents, letters, or other papers of a private nature, or articles having a pretium affectionis, such documents, letters, papers, or articles shall not be sold, but shall be retained by the company, without liability.

Code 1950, § 6-271; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-340; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2314. Provisions confer cumulative remedy.

The provisions of this chapter shall not (i) preclude any other remedy existing for the enforcement of the claims of a company against the person in whose name the box is rented, nor (ii) bar the right of the company to recover the unpaid portion of the debt from the proceeds of the sale of the property deposited with it.

Code 1950, § 6-272; 1966, c. 584, § 6.1-341; 2010, c. 794.

Chapter 24. Securitization Transactions.

§ 6.2-2400. Definition.

As used in this chapter:

"Securitization transaction" means a transaction relating to the issuance or transfer by a special purpose entity of beneficial interests or undivided interests, which entitle their holders to receive payments or other distributions that depend primarily on the cash flow from assets, including financial assets and other credit exposures, in which that special purpose entity has rights or the power to transfer rights.

2004, c. 600, § 6.1-473; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2401. Securitization transactions; no interest retained by transferor.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, including § 8.9A-623, to the extent set forth in the transaction documents relating to a securitization transaction:

1. Any property, assets, or rights purported to be transferred, in whole or in part, in the securitization transaction shall be deemed to no longer be the property, assets, or rights of the transferor;

2. A transferor in the securitization transaction, its creditors or, in any insolvency proceeding with respect to the transferor or the transferor's property, a bankruptcy trustee, receiver, debtor, debtor in possession, or similar person, to the extent the issue is governed by the laws of the Commonwealth, shall have no rights, legal or equitable, whatsoever to reacquire, reclaim, recover, repudiate, disaffirm, redeem, or recharacterize as property of the transferor any property, assets, or rights purported to be transferred, in whole or in part, by the transferor; and

3. In the event of a bankruptcy, receivership, or other insolvency proceeding with respect to the transferor or the transferor's property, to the extent the issue is governed by the laws of the Commonwealth, such property, assets, and rights shall not be deemed to be part of the transferor's property, assets, rights, or estate.

2004, c. 600, § 6.1-473; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2402. Treatment of securitization transactions.

Nothing contained in this chapter shall:

1. Be deemed to require any securitization transaction to be treated as a sale for federal or state tax purposes or to preclude the treatment of any securitization transaction as debt for federal or state tax purposes or to change any applicable laws relating to the perfection and priority of security or ownership interests of persons other than the transferor, hypothetical lien creditor or, in the event of a bankruptcy, receivership or other insolvency proceeding with respect to the transferor or its property, a bankruptcy trustee, receiver, debtor, debtor in possession, or similar person; or

2. Change the tax treatment of securitization transactions that take place pursuant to this chapter.

2004, c. 600, § 6.1-473; 2010, c. 794.

Chapter 25. Refund Anticipation Loans.

§ 6.2-2500. Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Applicant" means a customer who applies for a refund anticipation loan through a facilitator.

"Borrower" means an applicant who receives a refund anticipation loan through a facilitator.

"Customer" means an individual for whom tax preparation services are performed.

"Facilitator" means a person who receives or accepts for delivery an application for a refund anticipation loan, delivers a check in payment of refund anticipation loan proceeds, or in any other manner acts to allow the making of a refund anticipation loan. "Facilitator" does not include a bank, thrift, savings association, industrial bank, or credit union, operating under the laws of the United States or the Commonwealth, an affiliate that is a servicer for such an entity, or any person who acts solely as an intermediary and does not deal with an applicant in the making of the refund anticipation loan.

"Refund anticipation loan" means a loan, whether provided through a facilitator or by another entity such as a financial institution, in anticipation of, and whose payment is secured by, a customer's federal or state income tax refund or by both.

"Refund anticipation loan fee" means any fee, charge, or other consideration imposed by a lender or a facilitator for a refund anticipation loan. The term does not include any fee, charge, or other consideration usually imposed by a facilitator in the ordinary course of business for nonloan services, such as fees for preparing tax returns and fees for the electronic filing of tax returns.

"Refund anticipation loan fee schedule" means a list or table of refund anticipation loan fees that (i) includes three or more representative refund anticipation loan amounts; (ii) lists separately each fee or charge imposed, as well as a total of all fees imposed, related to the making of a refund anticipation loan; and (iii) includes, for each representative loan amount, the estimated annual percentage rate calculated under the guidelines established by the federal Truth in Lending Act (15 U.S.C. § 1601 et seq.).

"Tax return" means a return, declaration, statement, refund claim, or other document required to be made or filed in connection with state or federal income taxes.

2006, c. 399, § 6.1-474; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2501. Advertising; posting refund anticipation loan fee schedules; and disclosures.

A. Any facilitator who advertises the availability of a refund anticipation loan shall not directly or indirectly represent the loan as a customer's actual refund. Any advertisement that mentions a refund anticipation loan shall state conspicuously that it is a loan and that a fee or interest will be charged by the lending institution. The advertisement shall also disclose the name of the lending institution.

B. Every facilitator who offers to facilitate, or who facilitates, a refund anticipation loan to a customer shall post a refund anticipation loan fee schedule showing the current fees for refund anticipation loans facilitated at the office, for the electronic filing of a customer's tax return, for setting up a refund account, and any other related activities necessary to receive a refund anticipation loan. The refund anticipation loan fee schedule also shall include a statement indicating that a customer may have the tax return filed electronically without also obtaining a refund anticipation loan.

C. The refund anticipation loan fee schedule required by subsection B shall be made in not less than 28-point type on a document measuring not less than 16 inches by 20 inches. The postings required in this section shall be displayed in a prominent location at each office where any facilitator is offering to facilitate or is facilitating a refund anticipation loan.

D. Prior to an applicant completing a refund anticipation loan application, a facilitator that offers to facilitate a refund anticipation loan shall provide to the applicant a disclosure clearly setting forth the following:

1. The refund anticipation loan fee schedule;

2. That a refund anticipation loan is a loan and is not the applicant's actual income tax refund;

3. That a customer can file an income tax return electronically without applying for a refund anticipation loan;

4. The average amount of time, according to the Internal Revenue Service, within which a customer who does not obtain a refund anticipation loan can expect to receive a refund if a customer's return is filed or mailed as follows:

a. Filed electronically and the refund is deposited directly into a customer's bank account or mailed to a customer; and

b. Mailed to the Internal Revenue Service and the refund is deposited directly into a customer's bank account or mailed to a customer;

5. That the Internal Revenue Service does not guarantee that it will pay the full amount of the anticipated refund and it does not guarantee a specific date that a refund will be deposited into a customer's bank account or mailed to a customer;

6. That the borrower is responsible for the repayment of the refund anticipation loan and the related fees in the event that the tax refund is not paid or not paid in full;

7. The estimated time within which the loan proceeds will be disbursed to the borrower if the loan is approved; and

8. The fee that will be charged, if any, if the applicant's loan is not approved.

E. Prior to consummating a refund anticipation loan transaction, a facilitator shall provide to the applicant, in either written or electronic form, the following:

1. The estimated total fees for obtaining the refund anticipation loan;

2. The estimated annual percentage rate for the applicant's refund anticipation loan, using the guidelines established under the federal Truth in Lending Act (15 U.S.C. § 1601 et seq.); and

3. The various costs, fees, and finance charges, if applicable, associated with receiving a refund by mail or by direct deposit directly from the Internal Revenue Service, a refund anticipation loan, a refund anticipation check, or any other refund settlement options facilitated by the facilitator.

F. When an application involves more than one applicant, a disclosure pursuant to this section need only be given to one of the applicants applying for the refund anticipation loan.

2006, c. 399, §§ 6.1-475, 6.1-476; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2502. Prohibited activities.

Any facilitator who offers to facilitate, or who facilitates, a refund anticipation loan shall not:

1. Require a customer to enter into a loan arrangement in order to complete a tax return;

2. Misrepresent a material factor or condition of a refund anticipation loan;

3. Fail to process the application for a refund anticipation loan promptly after an applicant applies for the loan; or

4. Engage in any transaction, practice, or course of business that operates a fraud upon any person in connection with a refund anticipation loan.

2006, c. 399, § 6.1-476; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2503. Right of rescission.

A borrower who obtains a refund anticipation loan may rescind the loan, on or before the close of business on the next day of business, by either returning the original check issued for the loan or providing the amount of the loan in cash to the lender or the facilitator. The facilitator may not charge the borrower a fee for rescinding the loan or a refund anticipation loan fee if the loan is rescinded but may charge the customer a fee for establishing and administering a bank account to electronically receive and distribute the refund.

2006, c. 399, § 6.1-477; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2504. Preemption of local laws.

This chapter shall preempt and be exclusive of all ordinances of any locality relating to refund anticipation loans. This section shall be given retroactive and prospective effect.

2006, c. 399, § 6.1-478; 2010, c. 794.

§ 6.2-2505. Violations; enforcement.

Any violation of the provisions of this chapter shall constitute a prohibited practice under the provisions of § 59.1-200 and shall be subject to any and all of the enforcement provisions of the Virginia Consumer Protection Act (§ 59.1-196 et seq.).

2006, c. 399, § 6.1-479; 2010, c. 794.

Chapter 26. Qualified Education Loan Servicers.

§ 6.2-2600. Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Licensee" means a person to whom a license has been issued under this chapter.

"Nationwide Multistate Licensing System and Registry" or "Registry" means the nationwide multistate licensing system and registry created by the Conference of State Bank Supervisors and the American Association of Residential Mortgage Regulators.

"Principal" means any person who, directly or indirectly, owns or controls (i) 10 percent or more of the outstanding stock of a stock corporation or (ii) a 10 percent or greater interest in any other type of entity.

"Qualified education loan" means any loan primarily used to finance a postsecondary education and costs of attendance at a postsecondary public or private educational institution, including tuition, fees, books and supplies, room and board, transportation, and miscellaneous personal expenses. "Qualified education loan" includes a loan made to refinance a qualified education loan. "Qualified education loan" does not include an extension of credit under an open-end credit plan, a reverse mortgage transaction, a residential mortgage transaction, or any other loan that is secured by real property or a dwelling.

"Qualified education loan borrower" or "borrower" means (i) any current resident of the Commonwealth who has received or agreed to pay a qualified education loan or (ii) any person who is contractually obligated with such resident for repaying the qualified education loan.

"Qualified education loan servicer" or "loan servicer" means any person, wherever located, that:

1. (i) Receives any scheduled periodic payments from a qualified education loan borrower or notification of such payments or (ii) applies payments to the qualified education loan borrower's account pursuant to the terms of the qualified education loan or the contract governing the servicing;

2. During a period when no payment is required on a qualified education loan, (i) maintains account records for the qualified education loan and (ii) communicates with the qualified education loan borrower regarding the qualified education loan, on behalf of the qualified education loan's holder; or

3. Interacts with a qualified education loan borrower, which includes conducting activities to help prevent default on obligations arising from qualified education loans or to facilitate any activity described in clause (i) or (ii) of subdivision 1.

"Servicing" means:

1. (i) Receiving any scheduled periodic payments from a qualified education loan borrower or notification of such payments or (ii) applying the payments of principal and interest and such other payments, with respect to the amounts received from a qualified education loan borrower, as may be required pursuant to the terms of a qualified education loan;

2. During a period when no payment is required on a qualified education loan, (i) maintaining account records for the loan and (ii) communicating with the qualified education loan borrower regarding the qualified education loan, on behalf of the qualified education loan's holder; or

3. Interacting with a qualified education loan borrower, including conducting activities to help prevent default on obligations arising from qualified education loans or to facilitate any activity described in clause (i) or (ii) of subdivision 1.

2020, cc. 1198, 1250.

§ 6.2-2601. License requirement; exceptions.

A. No person shall act as a qualified education loan servicer, directly or indirectly, whether or not the person has an office or any other physical presence in the Commonwealth, except in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and without having first obtained a license under this chapter from the Commission.

B. Every qualified education loan servicer required to be licensed under this chapter shall register with the Registry and be subject to such registration and renewal requirements as may be established by the Registry, in addition to any requirements of this chapter. In adopting regulations pursuant to § 6.2-2622, the Commission shall include any terms, conditions, or requirements applicable to such registration and renewal. Any fees required by the Registry shall be separate and apart from any fees imposed by this chapter. The Commission, at its discretion, may collect any registration and renewal fees on behalf of the Registry and remit such fees to the Registry or permit the Registry to collect any fees imposed by this chapter and remit such fees to the Commission.

C. In connection with its implementation and administration of this chapter, the Commission may establish agreements or contracts with the Registry or other entities designated by the Registry to collect, distribute, and maintain information and records, and process fees, related to qualified education loan servicers required to be licensed under this chapter. In establishing such agreements or contracts, the Commission shall not be subject to the Virginia Public Procurement Act (§ 2.2-4300 et seq.).

D. The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to:

1. Any bank, savings institution, credit union, or financial institution subject to regulation under 12 U.S.C. § 2002;

2. Any wholly owned subsidiary of any bank, savings institution, or credit union, provided that such wholly owned subsidiary is subject to the general supervision or regulation of, or subject to audit or examination by, a regulatory body or agency of the United States or any state; or

3. Any public or private nonprofit institution of higher education.

2020, cc. 1198, 1250.

§ 6.2-2602. Licensure of qualified education loan servicers; automatic issuance of license for federal student loan servicing contractors.

A. A person seeking to act as a qualified education loan servicer is exempt from the application procedures described in subsections A and B of § 6.2-2603 upon determination by the Commissioner that the person (i) has an agreement with the U.S. Secretary of Education under 20 U.S.C. § 1078(b), solely to the extent of the person's actions as a guarantor that engages in averting defaults, or (ii) is a party to a contract awarded by the U.S. Secretary of Education under 20 U.S.C. § 1087f. The Commissioner shall prescribe the procedure to document eligibility for this exemption.

B. With regard to a person exempted from the application procedures described in subsections A and B of § 6.2-2603 pursuant to subsection A, the Commissioner shall:

1. Automatically issue a license upon payment of the fee required by subsection C of § 6.2-2603 and the providing of the bond required by § 6.2-2604;

2. Automatically renew a license upon payment of the fees required by subsection E of § 6.2-2607; and

3. Deem the person to have met all the requirements set forth in subsections A and B of § 6.2-2603.

C. A person issued a license pursuant to subdivision B 1:

1. Is exempt from subsections A and B of § 6.2-2603; and

2. Shall comply with the record requirements in § 6.2-2608 except to the extent that the requirements are inconsistent with federal law.

D. A person issued a license pursuant to subdivision B 1 shall, within seven days after receiving notification of the expiration, revocation, or termination of (i) an agreement with the U.S. Secretary of Education under 20 U.S.C. § 1078(b) or (ii) any contract awarded by the U.S. Secretary of Education under 20 U.S.C. § 1087f, provide the Commissioner with written notice of such expiration, revocation, or termination. Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, such person's license shall automatically expire 30 days after the expiration, revocation, or termination of such person's contract. A person seeking to act as a qualified education loan servicer following the expiration of its license may apply for a new license by filing an application that meets the requirements of §§ 6.2-2603 and 6.2-2604 and subsection B of § 6.2-2605.

E. With respect to qualified education loan servicing not conducted pursuant to (i) an agreement with the U.S. Secretary of Education under 20 U.S.C. § 1078(b) or (ii) a contract awarded by the U.S. Secretary of Education under 20 U.S.C. § 1087f, nothing in this section prevents the Commission from issuing an order to temporarily or permanently prohibit or bar any person from acting as a qualified education loan servicer or violating applicable law.

F. In the case of qualified education loan servicing conducted pursuant to (i) an agreement with the U.S. Secretary of Education under 20 U.S.C. § 1078(b) or (ii) a contract awarded by the U.S. Secretary of Education under 20 U.S.C. § 1087f, nothing in this section shall prevent the Commission from issuing a cease and desist order or injunction against any qualified education loan servicer to cease activities in violation of this act.

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§ 6.2-2603. Application for license; form; content; fee.

A. An application for a license under this chapter shall be made in writing and on a form provided by the Commission.

B. The application shall set forth:

1. The name and address of the applicant, the name and address of each senior officer, and (i) if the applicant is a partnership, firm, or association, the name and address of each partner or member; (ii) if the applicant is a corporation or limited liability company, the name and address of each director, member, registered agent, and principal; or (iii) if the applicant is a business trust, the name and address of each trustee;

2. The address of the principal place of business to be licensed;

3. Such other information concerning the financial responsibility, background, experience, and general fitness of the applicant and its members, senior officers, directors, trustees, and principals as the Commissioner may require; and

4. Any other pertinent information that the Commissioner may require.

C. The application shall be accompanied by payment of a nonrefundable application fee as prescribed by the Commission. The fee shall not be abated by surrender, suspension, or revocation of the license.

D. If the Commissioner requests information to complete a deficient application and the information is not received within 60 days of the Commissioner's request, the application shall be deemed abandoned unless a request for an extension of time is received and approved by the Commissioner prior to the expiration of the 60-day period. However, this subsection shall not be construed to prohibit the Commission from denying a license application that does not meet the requirements of this chapter.

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§ 6.2-2604. Bond required.

The application for a license shall be accompanied by a bond filed with the Commissioner with corporate surety authorized to execute such bond, in the principal amount as determined by the Commissioner. The amount of the bond shall be not less than $50,000 nor more than $500,000. The form of such bond shall be approved by the Commissioner. Such bond shall be continuously maintained thereafter in full force. Such bond shall be conditioned upon the applicant or licensee performing all written agreements pertaining to qualified education loans, correctly and accurately accounting for all funds received by the applicant or licensee in connection with qualified education loans, and conducting its business in conformity with this chapter and all applicable laws. The aggregate liability under the bond shall not exceed the penal sum of the bond.

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§ 6.2-2605. Investigation of applications.

A. The Commissioner may make such investigations as he deems necessary to determine if the applicant has complied with all applicable provisions of law and regulations.

B. For the purpose of investigating individuals who are members, senior officers, directors, trustees, and principals of an applicant, such persons shall consent to a criminal history records check and submit to fingerprinting. Each member, senior officer, director, trustee, and principal shall pay for the cost of such fingerprinting and criminal history records check. Such persons shall cause their fingerprints, personal descriptive information, and records check fees to be submitted to either of the following, as prescribed by the Commissioner:

1. The Bureau, which shall forward these items to the Central Criminal Records Exchange. The Central Criminal Records Exchange shall (i) conduct a search of its own criminal history records and forward such individuals' fingerprints and personal descriptive information to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for the purpose of obtaining national criminal history record information regarding such individuals and (ii) forward the results of the state and national records searches to the Commissioner or his designee, who shall be an employee of the Commission; or

2. The Registry, provided that it is capable of processing criminal history records checks.

C. If any member, senior officer, director, trustee, or principal of an applicant fails to cause his fingerprints, personal descriptive information, or records check fees to be submitted in accordance with subsection B, the application for a qualified education loan servicer license shall be denied.

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§ 6.2-2606. Qualifications.

A. Upon the filing and investigation of an application for a license, compliance by the applicant with the provisions of §§ 6.2-2603 and 6.2-2604, and compliance by the persons identified in subsection B of § 6.2-2605 with the provisions contained therein, the Commission shall issue and deliver to the applicant the license applied for to engage in business under this chapter at the location specified in the application if it finds that:

1. The financial responsibility, character, experience, and general fitness of the applicant and its members, senior officers, directors, trustees, and principals are such as to warrant belief that the business will be operated efficiently and fairly, in the public interest, and in accordance with the law;

2. The application does not contain any false statement of a material fact; and

3. The application does not omit any statement of a material fact that is required by § 6.2-2603.

B. If the Commission fails to make such findings, no license shall be issued and the Commissioner shall notify the applicant of the denial and the reasons for such denial.

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§ 6.2-2607. Licenses; place of business; changes; renewal.

A. Each license shall state the address at which the principal place of business is to be conducted and shall state fully the legal name of the licensee as well as any fictitious names by which the licensee is conducting business under this chapter. Licenses shall not be transferable or assignable, by operation of law or otherwise. No licensee shall use any names other than the legal name or fictitious names set forth on the license issued by the Commission.

B. Every licensee shall notify the Commissioner, in writing, at least 30 days prior to relocating its principal place of business and confirm the change in writing within five days after such relocation.

C. Every licensee shall within 10 days notify the Commissioner, in writing, of (i) any change to its legal name; (ii) any change to or additional fictitious name by which the licensee is conducting business under this chapter; and (iii) the name, address, and position of each new member, senior officer, director, trustee, and principal. At the direction of the Commissioner, any such individual shall be treated as a member, senior officer, director, trustee, or principal of an applicant for the purpose of being investigated pursuant to subsection B of § 6.2-2605. The licensee shall provide such other information with respect to the changes and persons identified in this subsection as the Commissioner may reasonably require.

D. Every license shall remain in force until it expires or has been surrendered, revoked, or suspended. The expiration, surrender, revocation, or suspension of a license shall not affect any preexisting legal right or obligation of such licensee.

E. Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, a qualified education loan servicer license shall expire at the end of each calendar year unless it is renewed by a licensee prior to the expiration date. A licensee may renew its license by (i) requesting renewal through the Registry and (ii) complying with any requirements associated with such renewal request that are imposed by the Registry. If a qualified education loan servicer license has expired, the Commission may by regulation permit the former licensee to seek license reinstatement after the license expiration date by renewing its license in accordance with this subsection and paying a reinstatement fee as prescribed by the Commission.

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§ 6.2-2608. Retention of records; responding to the Bureau.

A. Each licensee shall maintain in its principal place of business such books, accounts, and records as the Commissioner may reasonably require in order to determine whether such person is complying with the provisions of this chapter and other laws applicable to the conduct of its business. Such books, accounts, and records shall be maintained apart and separate from any other business in which the qualified education loan servicer is involved. Each licensee shall maintain adequate records of each qualified education loan transaction for at least three years after final payment is made on such loan or the assignment of such qualified education loan, whichever occurs first.

B. To safeguard the privacy of qualified education loan borrowers, records containing personal financial information shall be shredded, incinerated, or otherwise disposed of by a licensee in a secure manner. Licensees may arrange for the shredding, incineration, or other disposal of the records from a business record destruction vendor.

C. When the Bureau requests a written response, books, records, documentation, or other information from a licensee in connection with the Bureau's investigation, enforcement, or examination of compliance with applicable laws, the licensee shall deliver a written response as well as any requested books, records, documentation, or information within the time period specified in the Bureau's request. If no time period is specified, a written response as well as any requested books, records, documentation, or information shall be delivered by the licensee to the Bureau not later than 30 days from the date of such request. In determining the specified time period for responding to the Bureau and when considering a request for an extension of time to respond, the Bureau shall take into consideration the volume and complexity of the requested written response, books, records, documentation, or information and such other factors as the Bureau determines to be relevant under the circumstances.

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§ 6.2-2609. Acquisition of control; application.

A. Except as provided in this section, no person shall acquire, directly or indirectly, 25 percent or more of the voting shares of a corporation or 25 percent or more of the ownership of any other person licensed to conduct business under this chapter unless such person first:

1. Files an application with the Commission in such form as the Commissioner may prescribe from time to time;

2. Delivers such other information to the Commissioner as the Commissioner may require concerning the financial responsibility, background, experience, and general fitness of the applicant and of any proposed new directors, senior officers, principals, trustees, or members of the licensee;

3. Submits and furnishes to the Commissioner information concerning the identity of the applicant and of any proposed new directors, senior officers, principals, trustees, or members of the licensee. Such individuals shall (i) consent to a criminal history records check, submit to fingerprinting, and pay for the cost of such fingerprinting and criminal records check and (ii) cause their fingerprints, personal descriptive information, and records check fees to be submitted to either of the following, as prescribed by the Commissioner:

a. The Bureau, who shall forward these items to the Central Criminal Records Exchange. The Central Criminal Records Exchange shall (i) conduct searches of its own criminal history records and forward such individuals' fingerprints and personal descriptive information to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for the purpose of obtaining national criminal history record information regarding such individuals and (ii) forward the results of the state and national records search to the Commissioner or his designee, who shall be an employee of the Commission; or

b. The Registry, provided that it is capable of processing criminal history records checks; and

4. Pays such application fee as the Commission may prescribe.

B. Upon the filing and investigation of an application, the Commission shall permit the applicant to acquire the interest in the licensee if it finds that the applicant and any proposed new directors, members, senior officers, trustees, and principals of the licensee have the financial responsibility, character, experience, and general fitness to warrant belief that the business will be operated efficiently and fairly, in the public interest, and in accordance with law. The Commission shall grant or deny the application within 60 days from the date a completed application accompanied by the required fee is filed unless the period is extended by order of the Commissioner giving the reasons for the extension. If the application is denied, the Commission shall notify the applicant of the denial and the reasons for the denial.

C. The provisions of this section shall not apply to the acquisition of an interest in a licensee (i) directly or indirectly, including an acquisition by merger or consolidation, by or with a person licensed or exempt from licensing under this chapter; (ii) directly or indirectly, by merger or consolidation by or with a person affiliated through common ownership with the licensee; or (iii) by bequest, descent, survivorship, or operation of law. This section shall also not apply to the acquisition of an interest in a licensee that (i) an agreement with the U.S. Secretary of Education under 20 U.S.C. § 1078(b) or (ii) is a party to a contract awarded by the U.S. Secretary of Education under 20 U.S.C. § 1087f. The person acquiring an interest in a licensee in a transaction that is exempt from filing an application by this subsection shall send written notice of such acquisition to the Commissioner within 30 days of its closing.

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§ 6.2-2610. Prohibited activities; compliance with federal laws and regulations.

A. No qualified education loan servicer shall:

1. Directly or indirectly employ any scheme, device, or artifice to defraud or mislead qualified education loan borrowers;

2. Engage in any unfair or deceptive act or practice toward any person or misrepresent or omit any material information in connection with the servicing of a qualified education loan, including misrepresenting (i) the amount, nature, or terms of any fee or payment due or claimed to be due on a qualified education loan; (ii) the terms and conditions of the loan agreement; or (iii) the borrower's obligations under the loan;

3. Obtain property by fraud or misrepresentation;

4. Misapply qualified education loan payments to the outstanding balance of a qualified education loan;

5. Provide inaccurate information to a nationally recognized consumer credit bureau;

6. Fail to report both the favorable and unfavorable payment history of the borrower to a nationally recognized consumer credit bureau at least annually if the loan servicer regularly reports information to such a credit bureau;

7. Fail to communicate with an authorized representative of the borrower who provides a written authorization signed by the borrower, provided that the loan servicer may adopt procedures reasonably related to verifying that the representative is in fact authorized to act on behalf of the borrower;

8. Make any false statement of a material fact or omit any material fact in connection with any information provided to the Commission or another governmental authority; or

9. Engage in any other prohibited activities identified in regulations adopted by the Commission pursuant to this chapter.

B. A qualified education loan servicer shall comply with all federal laws and regulations applicable to the conduct of its licensed business. In addition to any other remedies provided by law, a violation of any such federal law or regulation shall be deemed a violation of this chapter and a basis upon which the Commission may take enforcement action pursuant to § 6.2-2615, 6.2-2617, or 6.2-2618.

C. A qualified education loan servicer shall not engage in abusive acts or practices when servicing a qualified education loan. An act or practice is abusive in connection with the servicing of a qualified education loan if the act or practice does either of the following:

1. Materially interferes with the ability of a borrower to understand a term or condition of a qualified education loan; or

2. Takes unreasonable advantage of:

a. A lack of understanding on the part of a qualified education loan borrower of the material risks, costs, or conditions of the qualified education loan;

b. The reasonable reliance by the borrower on a person engaged in the servicing of a qualified education loan to act in the interests of the borrower; or

c. The inability of a borrower to protect the interests of the borrower when selecting (i) a qualified education loan or (ii) a feature, term, or condition of a qualified education loan.

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§ 6.2-2611. Affirmative acts required of qualified education loan servicers.

Except to the extent that this section is inconsistent with any provision of federal law or regulation, and then only to the extent of the inconsistency, a person engaged in qualified education loan servicing shall:

1. Evaluate a qualified education loan borrower for eligibility for an income-driven repayment program prior to placing the borrower in forbearance or default, if an income-driven repayment program is available to the borrower;

2. Respond to a written inquiry from a qualified education loan borrower or the representative of a qualified education loan borrower within 10 business days after receipt of the request and, within 30 business days after receipt of the request, provide information relating to the request and, if applicable, to the action the qualified education loan servicer will take to correct the account or an explanation for the qualified education loan servicer's position that the borrower's account is correct. Such 30-day period may be extended for not more than 15 days if, before the end of the 30-day period, the qualified education loan servicer notifies the borrower, or the borrower's representative, as applicable, of the extension and the reasons for the delay in responding;

3. Not furnish to a consumer reporting agency, during 60 days following receipt of a written request related to a dispute on a borrower's payment on a qualified education loan, information regarding a payment that is the subject of the written request;

4. Except as provided in federal law or required by a qualified education loan agreement, inquire of a borrower how to apply an overpayment to a qualified education loan. A borrower's direction on how to apply an overpayment to a qualified education loan shall remain in effect for any future overpayments during the term of a qualified education loan or until the borrower provides different directions. As used in this subdivision, "overpayment" means a payment on a qualified education loan that exceeds the monthly amount due from a borrower on the qualified education loan, which payment may be referred to as a prepayment;

5. Apply partial payments in a manner that minimizes late fees and negative credit reporting. If loans on a borrower's qualified education loan account have an equal level of delinquency, a qualified education loan servicer shall apply partial payments to satisfy as many individual loan payments as possible on a borrower's account. As used in this subdivision, "partial payment" means a payment on a qualified education loan account that contains multiple individual loans in an amount less than the amount necessary to satisfy the outstanding payment due on all loans in the qualified education loan account, which payment may be referred to as an underpayment;

6. Require, as a condition of a sale, an assignment, or any other transfer of the servicing of a qualified education loan, that the new loan servicer honor all benefits originally represented as available to a qualified education loan borrower during the repayment of the qualified education loan and preserve the availability of the benefits, including any benefits for which the qualified education loan borrower has not yet qualified. If a qualified education loan servicer is not also the loan holder or is not acting on behalf of the loan holder, the loan servicer satisfies the requirement of this subsection by providing the new loan servicer with information necessary for the new loan servicer to honor all benefits originally represented as available to a qualified education loan borrower during the repayment of the qualified education loan and preserve the availability of the benefits, including any benefits for which the loan borrower has not yet qualified; and

7. In the event of a sale, assignment, or other transfer of the servicing of a qualified education loan that results in a change in the identity of the person to whom a qualified education loan borrower is required to send payments or direct any communication concerning the qualified education loan:

a. Transfer to the new loan servicer all records regarding the qualified education loan borrower, the account of the loan borrower, and the qualified education loan of the loan borrower. Such records include the repayment status of the qualified education loan borrower and any benefits associated with the qualified education loan of the loan borrower. The transfer of records shall be completed within 45 days after the sale, assignment, or other transfer of the servicing of a qualified education loan;

b. Notify affected qualified education loan borrowers of the sale, assignment, or other transfer of the servicing of a qualified education loan at least seven days before the next payment on the loan is due. The notice shall include (i) the identity of the new qualified education loan servicer; (ii) the effective date of the transfer of the borrower's qualified education loan to the new loan servicer; (iii) the date on which the existing loan servicer will no longer accept payments; and (iv) the contact information for the new loan servicer; and

c. Adopt policies and procedures to verify that the new qualified education loan servicer has received all records regarding the qualified education loan borrower, the account of the qualified education loan borrower, and the qualified education loan of the borrower, including the repayment status of the qualified education loan borrower and any benefits associated with the qualified education loan of the borrower.

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§ 6.2-2612. Reporting requirements.

A. Within 15 days following the occurrence of any of the following events, a licensee shall file a written report with the Commission describing such event and its expected impact upon the business of the licensee:

1. The filing of bankruptcy, reorganization, or receivership proceedings by or against the licensee;

2. The institution of administrative or regulatory proceedings against the licensee by any governmental authority;

3. Any felony indictment of the licensee or any of its members, directors, senior officers, trustees, or principals;

4. Any felony conviction of the licensee or any of its members, directors, senior officers, trustees, or principals; and

5. Such other events as the Commission may prescribe by regulation.

B. Each licensee shall file periodic written reports with the Commissioner or the Registry containing such information as the Commissioner may require concerning the licensee's business and operations. Reports shall be in the form and be submitted with such frequency and by such dates as may be prescribed by the Commissioner.

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§ 6.2-2613. Investigations; examinations.

A. The Commission may, as often as it deems necessary, investigate and examine the affairs, business, premises, and records of any person licensed or required to be licensed under this chapter insofar as they pertain to any business for which a license is required by this chapter. Examinations of licensees shall be conducted at least once in each three-year period. In the course of such investigations and examinations, the owners, members, officers, directors, partners, trustees, and employees of the person being investigated or examined shall, upon demand of the person making such investigation or examination, afford full access to all premises, books, records, and information that the person making such investigation or examination deems necessary.

B. Examinations under this section may be conducted in conjunction with examinations to be performed by representatives of agencies of the federal government or another state. In lieu of conducting an examination, the Commission may accept the examination report of the federal government or another state.

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§ 6.2-2614. Annual fees.

A. In order to defray the costs of their examination, supervision, and regulation, every licensee under this chapter shall pay an annual fee calculated in accordance with a schedule set by the Commission. All such fees shall be assessed on or before April 1 for every calendar year. All such fees shall be paid by the licensee to the State Treasurer on or before May 1 following each assessment.

B. In addition to the annual fee prescribed in subsection A, when it becomes necessary to examine or investigate the books and records of a licensee under this chapter at a location outside the Commonwealth, the licensee shall be liable for and shall pay to the Commission within 30 days of the presentation of an itemized statement the actual travel and reasonable living expenses incurred on account of its examination, supervision, and regulation or shall pay a reasonable per diem rate approved by the Commission.

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§ 6.2-2615. Suspension or revocation of license.

A. The Commission may suspend or revoke any license issued under this chapter upon any of the following grounds:

1. Any ground for denial of a license under this chapter;

2. Any violation of the provisions of this chapter or regulations adopted by the Commission pursuant thereto, or a violation of any other law or regulation applicable to the conduct of the licensee's business;

3. A course of conduct consisting of the failure to perform written agreements with qualified education loan borrowers;

4. Failure to account for funds received or disbursed to the satisfaction of the person supplying or receiving qualified education loan funds;

5. Conviction of any felony or of a misdemeanor involving fraud, misrepresentation, or deceit;

6. Entry of a judgment against the licensee involving fraud, misrepresentation, or deceit;

7. Entry of a federal or state administrative order against the licensee for violation of any law or regulation applicable to the conduct of the licensee's business;

8. Refusal to permit an investigation or examination by the Commission;

9. Failure to pay any fee or assessment imposed by this chapter; or

10. Failure to comply with any order of the Commission.

B. For the purposes of this section, acts of any senior officer, director, member, partner, trustee, or principal shall be deemed acts of the licensee.

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§ 6.2-2616. Notice of proposed suspension or revocation.

The Commission shall not revoke or suspend the license of any licensee upon any of the grounds set forth in § 6.2-2615 until it has given the licensee (i) 21 days' notice in writing of the reasons for the proposed revocation or suspension and (ii) an opportunity to introduce evidence and be heard. The notice shall be sent by certified mail to the principal place of business of such licensee and shall state with particularity the grounds for the contemplated action. Within 14 days of mailing the notice, the licensee named therein may file with the Clerk of the Commission a written request for a hearing. If a hearing is requested, the Commission shall not suspend or revoke the license except based upon findings made at such hearing. The hearing shall be conducted in accordance with the Commission's Rules.

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§ 6.2-2617. Cease and desist orders.

A. If the Commission determines that any person has violated any provision of this chapter or any regulation adopted by the Commission pursuant thereto, or violated any other law or regulation applicable to the conduct of a licensee's business, the Commission may, upon 21 days' notice in writing, order such person to cease and desist from such practices and to comply with the provisions of this chapter and other applicable laws and regulations. The notice shall be sent by certified mail to the principal place of business of such person or other address authorized under § 12.1-19.1 and shall state the grounds for the contemplated action.

B. Within 14 days of mailing the notice, the person named therein may file with the clerk of the Commission a written request for a hearing. If a hearing is requested, the Commission shall not issue a cease and desist order except on the basis of findings made at the hearing. The hearing shall be conducted in accordance with the Commission's Rules. The Commission may enforce compliance with any order issued under this section by imposition and collection of such fines and penalties as may be prescribed by law.

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§ 6.2-2618. Civil penalties.

The Commission may impose a civil penalty not exceeding $2,500 upon any person who it determines, in proceedings commenced in accordance with the Commission's Rules, has violated any of the provisions of this chapter or regulations adopted by the Commission pursuant thereto or violated any other law or regulation applicable to conduct of the person's business. For the purposes of this section, each separate violation shall be subject to the civil penalty prescribed in this section, and each day that an unlicensed person engages in the business of a qualified education loan servicer shall constitute a separate violation.

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§ 6.2-2619. Private cause of action.

A. A qualified education loan servicer shall:

1. Comply with this chapter.

2. Comply with all applicable federal laws related to qualified education loan servicing, as from time to time amended, and the regulations promulgated thereunder.

B. Any person who suffers damage as a result of the failure of a qualified education loan servicer to comply with the requirements of subdivisions A 1 and 2 may bring an action against that qualified education loan servicer to recover or obtain any of the following:

1. Actual damages, but in no case shall the total award of damages be less than $500 per violation;

2. An order enjoining the methods, acts, or practices;

3. Restitution of property;

4. Punitive damages;

5. Attorney fees; and

6. Any other relief the court deems proper.

C. In addition to any other remedies provided by this section or otherwise provided by law, whenever it is proven by a preponderance of the evidence that a qualified education loan servicer has engaged in conduct that substantially interferes with a borrower's right to (i) an alternative payment arrangement; (ii) loan forgiveness, cancellation, or discharge; or (iii) any other financial benefit as established under the terms of a borrower's promissory note or under the Higher Education Act of 1965, 20 U.S.C. § 1070a et seq., as amended from time to time, and regulations promulgated thereunder, the court shall award treble actual damages to the plaintiff, but in no case shall the award of damages be less than $1,500 per violation.

D. The remedies provided in this section are not intended to be the exclusive remedies available to the qualified education loan borrower, and a qualified education loan borrower shall not be required to exhaust any administrative remedies established pursuant to this chapter or any other applicable law prior to proceeding under this section.

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§ 6.2-2620. Investigating and restraining prohibited acts.

A. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 59.1-199, whenever the Attorney General has reasonable cause to believe that any person has engaged in, or is engaging in, or is about to engage in any violation of this chapter, the Attorney General is empowered to issue a civil investigative demand. The provisions of § 59.1-9.10 shall apply mutatis mutandis to civil investigative demands issued pursuant to this section.

B. Notwithstanding any other provisions of law to the contrary, the Attorney General may cause an action to be brought in the appropriate circuit court in the name of the Commonwealth to enjoin any violation of this chapter. The circuit court having jurisdiction may enjoin such violations notwithstanding the existence of an adequate remedy at law. In any action under this section, it shall not be necessary that damages be proved.

C. The circuit courts are authorized to issue temporary or permanent injunctions to restrain and prevent violations of this chapter.

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§ 6.2-2621. Violation of the Virginia Consumer Protection Act.

Notwithstanding the provisions of § 59.1-199, any violation of the provisions of this chapter shall constitute a prohibited practice in accordance with § 59.1-200 and shall be subject to any and all of the enforcement provisions of the Virginia Consumer Protection Act (§ 59.1-196 et seq.).

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§ 6.2-2622. Regulations.

The Commission shall adopt such regulations as it deems appropriate to effect the purposes of this chapter. Before adopting any such regulation, the Commission shall give reasonable notice of its content and shall afford interested parties an opportunity to be heard, in accordance with the Commission's Rules.

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