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Title 12 Part 1026 → Subpart G → §1026.61

Title 12 → Chapter X → Part 1026 → Subpart G → §1026.61

Electronic Code of Federal Regulations e-CFR

Title 12 Part 1026 → Subpart G → §1026.61

e-CFR data is current as of October 11, 2019

Title 12Chapter XPart 1026Subpart G → §1026.61


Title 12: Banks and Banking
PART 1026—TRUTH IN LENDING (REGULATION Z)
Subpart G—Special Rules Applicable to Credit Card Accounts and Open-End Credit Offered to College Students


§1026.61   Hybrid prepaid-credit cards.

(a) Hybrid prepaid-credit card—(1) In general. (i) Credit offered in connection with a prepaid account is subject to this section and this regulation as specified below.

(ii) For purposes of this regulation, except as provided in paragraph (a)(4) of this section, a prepaid card is a hybrid prepaid-credit card with respect to a separate credit feature as described in paragraph (a)(2)(i) of this section when it can access credit from that credit feature, or with respect to a credit feature structured as a negative balance on the asset feature of the prepaid account as described in paragraph (a)(3) of this section when it can access credit from that credit feature. A hybrid prepaid-credit card is a credit card for purposes of this regulation with respect to those credit features.

(iii) With respect to a credit feature structured as a negative balance on the asset feature of the prepaid account as described in paragraph (a)(3) of this section, a prepaid card is not a hybrid prepaid-credit card or a credit card for purposes of this regulation if the conditions set forth in paragraph (a)(4) of this section are met.

(2) Prepaid card can access credit from a covered separate credit feature—(i) Covered separate credit feature. (A) A separate credit feature that can be accessed by a hybrid prepaid-credit card as described in this paragraph (a)(2)(i) is defined as a covered separate credit feature. A prepaid card is a hybrid prepaid-credit card with respect to a separate credit feature when it is a single device that can be used from time to time to access the separate credit feature where the following two conditions are both satisfied:

(1) The card can be used to draw, transfer, or authorize the draw or transfer of credit from the separate credit feature in the course of authorizing, settling, or otherwise completing transactions conducted with the card to obtain goods or services, obtain cash, or conduct person-to-person transfers; and

(2) The separate credit feature is offered by the prepaid account issuer, its affiliate, or its business partner.

(B) A separate credit feature that meets the conditions set forth in paragraph (a)(2)(i)(A) of this section is a covered separate credit feature accessible by a hybrid prepaid-credit card even with respect to credit that is drawn or transferred, or authorized to be drawn or transferred, from the credit feature outside the course of a transaction conducted with the card to obtain goods or services, obtain cash, or conduct person-to-person transfers.

(ii) Non-covered separate credit feature. A separate credit feature that does not meet the two conditions set forth in paragraph (a)(2)(i) of this section is defined as a non-covered separate credit feature. A prepaid card is not a hybrid prepaid-credit card with respect to a non-covered separate credit feature, even if the prepaid card is a hybrid prepaid-credit card with respect to a covered separate credit feature as described in paragraph (a)(2)(i) of this section. A non-covered separate credit feature is not subject to the rules applicable to hybrid prepaid-credit cards; however, it may be subject to this regulation depending on its own terms and conditions, independent of the connection to the prepaid account.

(3) Prepaid card can access credit extended through a negative balance on the asset feature of the prepaid account—(i) In general. Except as provided in paragraph (a)(4) of this section, a prepaid card is a hybrid prepaid-credit card when it is a single device that can be used from time to time to access credit extended through a negative balance on the asset feature of the prepaid account.

(ii) Negative asset balances. Notwithstanding paragraph (a)(3)(i) of this section with regard to coverage under this regulation, structuring a hybrid prepaid-credit card to access credit through a negative balance on the asset feature violates paragraph (b) of this section. A prepaid account issuer can use a negative asset balance structure to extend credit on an asset feature of a prepaid account only if the prepaid card is not a hybrid prepaid-credit card with respect to that credit as described in paragraph (a)(4) of this section.

(4) Exception for credit extended through a negative balance. A prepaid card is not a hybrid prepaid-credit card with respect to credit extended through a negative balance on the asset feature of the prepaid account and is not a credit card for purposes of this regulation with respect to that credit where:

(i) The prepaid card cannot access credit from a covered separate credit feature as described in paragraph (a)(2)(i) of this section that is offered by a prepaid account issuer or its affiliate; and

(ii) The prepaid card only can access credit extended through a negative balance on the asset feature of the prepaid account where both paragraphs (a)(4)(ii)(A) and (B) of this section are satisfied.

(A) The prepaid account issuer has an established policy and practice of either declining to authorize any transaction for which it reasonably believes the consumer has insufficient or unavailable funds in the asset feature of the prepaid account at the time the transaction is authorized to cover the amount of the transaction, or declining to authorize any such transactions except in one or more of the following circumstances:

(1) The amount of the transaction will not cause the asset feature balance to become negative by more than $10 at the time of the authorization; or

(2) In cases where the prepaid account issuer has received an instruction or confirmation for an incoming electronic fund transfer originated from a separate asset account to load funds to the prepaid account or where the prepaid account issuer has received a request from the consumer to load funds to the prepaid account from a separate asset account but in either case the funds from the separate asset account have not yet settled, the amount of the transaction will not cause the asset feature balance to become negative at the time of the authorization by more than the incoming or requested load amount, as applicable.

(B) The following fees or charges are not imposed on the asset feature of the prepaid account:

(1) Any fees or charges for opening, issuing, or holding a negative balance on the asset feature, or for the availability of credit, whether imposed on a one-time or periodic basis. This paragraph does not include fees or charges to open, issue, or hold the prepaid account where the amount of the fee or charge imposed on the asset feature is not higher based on whether credit might be offered or has been accepted, whether or how much credit the consumer has accessed, or the amount of credit available;

(2) Any fees or charges that will be imposed only when credit is extended on the asset feature or when there is a negative balance on the asset feature, except that a prepaid account issuer may impose fees or charges for the actual costs of collecting the credit extended if otherwise permitted by law; or

(3) Any fees or charges where the amount of the fee or charge is higher when credit is extended on the asset feature or when there is a negative balance on the asset feature.

(C) A prepaid account issuer may still satisfy the exception in paragraph (a)(4) of this section even if it debits fees or charges from the asset feature when there are insufficient or unavailable funds in the asset feature to cover those fees or charges at the time they are imposed, so long as those fees or charges are not the type of fees or charges enumerated in paragraph (a)(4)(ii)(B) of this section.

(5) Definitions. For purposes of this section and other provisions in the regulation that relate to hybrid prepaid-credit cards:

(i) Affiliate means any company that controls, is controlled by, or is under common control with another company, as set forth in the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956 (12 U.S.C. 1841 et seq.).

(ii) Asset feature means an asset account that is a prepaid account, or an asset subaccount of a prepaid account.

(iii) Business partner means a person (other than the prepaid account issuer or its affiliates) that can extend credit through a separate credit feature where the person or its affiliate has an arrangement with a prepaid account issuer or its affiliate except as provided in paragraph (a)(5)(iii)(D) of this section.

(A) Arrangement defined. For purposes of paragraph (a)(5)(iii) of this section, a person that can extend credit through a separate credit feature or the person's affiliate has an arrangement with a prepaid account issuer or its affiliate if the circumstances in either paragraph (a)(5)(iii)(B) or (C) of this section are met.

(B) Arrangement by agreement. A person that can extend credit through a separate credit feature or its affiliate has an arrangement with a prepaid account issuer or its affiliate if the parties have an agreement that allows the prepaid card from time to time to draw, transfer, or authorize a draw or transfer of credit in the course of authorizing, settling, or otherwise completing transactions conducted with the card to obtain goods or services, obtain cash, or conduct person-to-person transfers.

(C) Marketing arrangement. A person that can extend credit through a separate credit feature or its affiliate has an arrangement with a prepaid account issuer or its affiliate if:

(1) The parties have a business, marketing, or promotional agreement or other arrangement which provides that prepaid accounts offered by the prepaid account issuer will be marketed to the customers of the person that can extend credit; or the separate credit feature offered by the person who can extend credit will be marketed to the holders of prepaid accounts offered by the prepaid account issuer (including any marketing to customers to encourage them to authorize the prepaid card to access the separate credit feature as described in paragraph (a)(5)(iii)(C)(2) of this section); and

(2) At the time of the marketing agreement or arrangement described in paragraph (a)(5)(iii)(C)(1) of this section, or at any time afterwards, the prepaid card from time to time can draw, transfer, or authorize the draw or transfer of credit from the separate credit feature offered by the person that can extend credit in the course of authorizing, settling, or otherwise completing transactions conducted with the card to obtain goods or services, obtain cash, or conduct person-to-person transfers. This requirement is satisfied even if there is no specific agreement between the parties that the card can access the credit feature, as described in paragraph (a)(5)(iii)(B) of this section.

(D) Exception for certain credit card account arrangements. For purposes of paragraph (a)(5)(iii) of this section, a person that can extend credit through a credit card account is not a business partner of a prepaid account issuer with which it has an arrangement as defined in paragraphs (a)(5)(iii)(A) through (C) of this section with regard to such credit card account if all of the following conditions are met:

(1) The credit card account is a credit card account under an open-end (not home-secured) consumer credit plan that a consumer can access through a traditional credit card.

(2) The prepaid account issuer and the card issuer do not allow the prepaid card to draw, transfer, or authorize the draw or transfer of credit from the credit card account from time to time in the course of authorizing, settling, or otherwise completing transactions conducted with the card to obtain goods or services, obtain cash, or conduct person-to-person transfers, except where the prepaid account issuer or the card issuer has received from the consumer a written request that is separately signed or initialized to authorize the prepaid card to access the credit card account as described above. If the credit card account is linked to the prepaid account prior to April 1, 2019, or prior to the arrangement between the prepaid account issuer and the card issuer as described in paragraphs (a)(5)(iii)(A) through (C) of this section, the prepaid account issuer and the card issuer will be deemed to have satisfied this condition even if they have not received from the consumer a written request that is separately signed or initialized to authorize the prepaid card to access the credit card account as described in this paragraph.

(3) The prepaid account issuer and the card issuer do not condition the acquisition or retention of the prepaid account or the credit card account on whether a consumer authorizes the prepaid card to access the credit card account as described in paragraph (a)(5)(iii)(D)(2) of this section. If the credit card account is linked to the prepaid account prior to April 1, 2019, this condition only applies to the retention of the prepaid account and the credit card account on or after April 1, 2019.

(4) The prepaid account issuer applies the same terms, conditions, or features to the prepaid account when a consumer authorizes linking the prepaid card to the credit card account as described in paragraph (a)(5)(iii)(D)(2) of this section as it applies to the consumer's prepaid account when the consumer does not authorize such a linkage. In addition, the prepaid account issuer applies the same fees to load funds from the credit card account that is linked to the prepaid account as described above as it charges for a comparable load on the consumer's prepaid account to access a credit feature offered by a person that is not the prepaid account issuer, its affiliate, or a person with which the prepaid account issuer has an arrangement as described in paragraphs (a)(5)(iii)(A) through (C) of this section.

(5) The card issuer applies the same specified terms and conditions to the credit card account when a consumer authorizes linking the prepaid card to the credit card account as described in paragraph (a)(5)(iii)(D)(2) of this section as it applies to the consumer's credit card account when the consumer does not authorize such a linkage. In addition, the card issuer applies the same specified terms and conditions to extensions of credit accessed by the prepaid card from the credit card account as it applies to extensions of credit accessed by the traditional credit card. For purposes of this paragraph, “specified terms and conditions” means the terms and conditions required to be disclosed under §1026.6(b), any repayment terms and conditions, and the limits on liability for unauthorized credit transactions.

(iv) Credit feature means a separate credit account or a credit subaccount of a prepaid account through which credit can be extended in connection with a prepaid card, or a negative balance on an asset feature of a prepaid account through which credit can be extended in connection with a prepaid card.

(v) Prepaid account means a prepaid account as defined in Regulation E, 12 CFR 1005.2(b)(3).

(vi) Prepaid account issuer means a financial institution as defined in Regulation E, 12 CFR 1005.2(i), with respect to a prepaid account.

(vii) Prepaid card means any card, code, or other device that can be used to access a prepaid account.

(viii) Separate credit feature means a credit account or a credit subaccount of a prepaid account through which credit can be extended in connection with a prepaid card that is separate from the asset feature of the prepaid account. This term does not include a negative balance on an asset feature of a prepaid account.

(b) Structure of credit features accessible by hybrid prepaid-credit cards. With respect to a credit feature that is accessible by a hybrid prepaid-credit card, a card issuer shall not structure the credit feature as a negative balance on the asset feature of a prepaid account. A card issuer shall structure the credit feature as a separate credit feature, either as a separate credit account, or as a credit subaccount of a prepaid account that is separate from the asset feature of the prepaid account. The separate credit feature is a covered separate credit feature accessible by a hybrid prepaid-credit card under §1026.61(a)(2)(i).

(c) Timing requirement for credit card solicitation or application with respect to hybrid prepaid-credit cards. (1) With respect to a covered separate credit feature that could be accessible by a hybrid prepaid-credit card at any point, a card issuer must not do any of the following until 30 days after the prepaid account has been registered:

(i) Open a covered separate credit feature that could be accessible by the hybrid prepaid-credit card;

(ii) Make a solicitation or provide an application to open a covered separate credit feature that could be accessible by the hybrid prepaid-credit card; or

(iii) Allow an existing credit feature that was opened prior to the consumer obtaining the prepaid account to become a covered separate credit feature accessible by the hybrid prepaid-credit card.

(2) For purposes of paragraph (c) of this section, the term solicitation has the meaning set forth in §1026.60(a)(1).

[81 FR 84370, Nov. 22, 2016; 83 FR 6439, Feb. 13, 2017]


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