It’s been 100 years since the time of jazz clubs, speakeasies and flappers. A time when new inventions such as radios, movies, telephones and automobiles introduced a new modern lifestyle. One hundred years later, technology has significantly evolved, and no doubt our jazz age ancestors would think the internet is the cat’s pajamas.

With that in mind, renewal season is quickly approaching and the Consumer Financial Services practice group at Mayer Brown understands you’d like to ring in the New Year partying like it’s 1920. Don’t worry old sport, we’ve got the goods to get you started on a quick and efficient renewal process to prepare for 2020.

  1. Review your Company and Individual records – Make sure your records are current and accurate, and that you have resolved any posted deficiencies prior to filing for a license renewal in a state.  States may challenge a licensee’s attestation and eligibility for renewal if there are inaccuracies in the record, or open deficiency items. Renewal season starts November 1st, but the sooner you update your records, the more time you will have to work with regulators to resolve their questions outside of your renewal timeline.
  2. Review expiration dates – Criminal Background Checks (“CBC”) through the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System (“NMLS”) were introduced in 2016 and expire after three years. Work with control persons to re-attest to their records and submit new electronic fingerprints as soon as you can. CBCs require MU2 attestation, an MU1 filing prior to submission of the renewal request, and actions on behalf of the Control Persons (which may necessitate a visit to an outside vendor) to complete the process.
  3. Review renewal checklists – Prepare any documentation required to be submitted outside of NMLS. In many states, submitting the renewal request online does not complete your renewal filing – you must also provide the documentation outlined in the renewal checklist by a specific due date for renewal approval. See the Renewal Page of the NMLS Resource Center.
  4. Check in with Qualified Individuals and Branch Managers – Make sure they complete any continuing education requirements in a timely manner. Failure to complete the continuing education or to submit an individual renewal request could delay or preclude renewal of the company’s main and/or branch license. As it may take up to seven days for a course provider to report continuing education course completions to NMLS, plan accordingly. Again, while renewals are not available to be filed until November 1st, continuing education can be completed early. See the NMLS for additional information.
  5. Watch Due Dates – While many states will indicate licensees have until December 31st to file renewals, reading the fine print may reveal that there is an earlier submission deadline to ensure the state has sufficient time to process your renewal before license expiration. Also, note the states in which your license must be approved before December 31st in order to continue activities past the new year. In several states, if your renewal is not approved by December 31st, you are not permitted to continue to engage in licensable activities on January 1st. See downloadable NMLS Company and Individual renewal charts and checklists.
  6. Monitor deficiency items and respond quickly – With several hundred renewal requests to be processed in a short period of time, state regulators will not be sending out frequent reminders about outstanding deficiency items. Log onto NMLS daily to review new deficiencies, or manage your notification settings in NMLS to ensure you receive an email when a new deficiency items is posted.
  7. Use a credit card – Submit NMLS renewal fees using a credit card to reduce the likelihood of a delayed ACH transaction.
  8. For those of you who are also pursuing Transitional Authority for Qualified Mortgage Loan Originators – The Transitional Authority for qualified mortgage loan originators to originate loans in a state in which a license application is pending goes into effect on November 24, 2019. However regulators in some states have publicly indicated that because their Mortgage Licensing Act has not been amended to provide for Transitional Authority, they will not allow mortgage loan originators seeking Transitional Authority to originate loans in their state until the individual is licensed in their state. Companies should make sure that a state recognizes Transitional Authority before allowing a mortgage loan originator to originate loans in a state in which a person is not licensed as a mortgage loan originator, and only has a license application pending.
  9. File Early – File on November 1st. Make sure your NMLS record is up-to-date and you’ve prepared all necessary documentation for renewal, and submit your renewal request as early as possible. The sooner you file a complete renewal application, the faster your renewals are approved.

We trust these tips will make your renewal process a little easier, leaving you more time to dance the Charleston. Of course, should you need help in getting through the licensing process, overcoming a deficiency, or learning the Charleston, please give us a call at Mayer Brown. Our team is the bee’s knees, and has handled hundreds of renewal questions. We would be happy to spill the beans to help you complete your filings.