Senate leaders have apparently reached an agreement to begin debate Nov. 4 on a bill that would extend and enhance the Fair Credit Reporting Act.The bill (S. 1753) makes free credit reports available to consumers, requires lenders to take new measures to address identity theft, and expands the use of adverse action notices. Industry groups are nervous about the Senate provision that requires an adverse-action notice if the borrower is offered an interest rate or terms that are "materially less favorable" than terms generally offered by the lender. The terms are loosely defined, and the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Reserve Board would have joint responsibility in determining when lenders must inform borrowers that they cannot get the best interest rate because of their credit score. "It is not entirely clear how this is going to work out until the regulations come out," one lobbyist said. The House has passed an FCRA extension bill, but it does not expand the use of adverse-action notices.

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