Perhaps here’s some news on a Friday that might help finance companies and their collectors exhale a bit.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau this week proposed extending the effective date of two recent debt collection rules to give affected parties more time to comply due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a news release, the CFPB issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to delay by 60 days the effective date of two final rules issued under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).

The debt collection rules, issued late last year, were scheduled to take effect on Nov. 30. The CFPB is proposing to extend the effective date of both rules to Jan. 29.

“The proposed delay would allow stakeholders affected by the pandemic additional time to review and implement the rules,” the bureau said.

The CFPB recapped that the first debt collection rule issued in October focuses on the use of communications related to debt collection and clarifies prohibitions on harassment and abuse, false or misleading representations and unfair practices by debt collectors when collecting consumer debt.

Officials added that the second debt collection rule rolled out in December clarifies disclosures debt collectors must provide to consumers at the beginning of collection communications. The CFPB said the rule also prohibits debt collectors from making threats to sue, or from suing, consumers on time-barred debt.

“The rule requires debt collectors to take specific steps to disclose the existence of a debt to consumers before reporting information about the debt to a consumer reporting agency,” officials said.

The CFPB added the latest proposal will be open for comment for 30 days following publication in the Federal Register. You can read the text of the entire proposal on this website.