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Comment for 1013.2 - Definitions

2(b) Advertisement

1. Coverage. The term advertisement includes messages inviting, offering, or otherwise generally announcing to prospective customers the availability of consumer leases, whether in visual, oral, print or electronic media. Examples include:

i. Messages in newspapers, magazines, leaflets, catalogs, and fliers.

ii. Messages on radio, television, and public address systems.

iii. Direct mail literature.

iv. Printed material on any interior or exterior sign or display, in any window display, in any point-of-transaction literature or price tag that is delivered or made available to a lessee or prospective lessee in any manner whatsoever.

v. Telephone solicitations.

vi. Online messages, such as those on the Internet.

2. Exclusions. The term does not apply to the following:

i. Direct personal contacts, including follow-up letters, cost estimates for individual lessees, or oral or written communications relating to the negotiation of a specific transaction.

ii. Informational material distributed only to businesses.

iii. Notices required by Federal or state law, if the law mandates that specific information be displayed and only the mandated information is included in the notice.

iv. News articles controlled by the news medium.

v. Market research or educational materials that do not solicit business.

3. Persons covered. See the commentary to § 1013.7(a).

2(d) Closed-End Lease

1. General. In closed-end leases, sometimes referred to as “walk-away” leases, the lessee is not responsible for the residual value of the leased property at the end of the lease term.

2(e) Consumer Lease

1. Primary purposes. A lessor must determine in each case if the leased property will be used primarily for personal, family, or household purposes. If a question exists as to the primary purpose for a lease, the fact that a lessor gives disclosures is not controlling on the question of whether the transaction is covered. The primary purpose of a lease is determined before or at consummation and a lessor need not provide Regulation M disclosures where there is a subsequent change in the primary use.

2. Period of time. To be a consumer lease, the initial term of the lease must be more than four months. Thus, a lease of personal property for four months, three months or on a month-to-month or week-to-week basis (even though the lease actually extends beyond four months) is not a consumer lease and is not subject to the disclosure requirements of the regulation. However, a lease that imposes a penalty for not continuing the lease beyond four months is considered to have a term of more than four months. To illustrate:

i. A three-month lease extended on a month-to-month basis and terminated after one year is not subject to the regulation.

ii. A month-to-month lease with a penalty, such as the forfeiture of a security deposit for terminating before one year, is subject to the regulation.

3. Total contractual obligation. The total contractual obligation is not necessarily the same as the total of payments disclosed under § 1013.4(e). The total contractual obligation includes nonrefundable amounts a lessee is contractually obligated to pay to the lessor, but excludes items such as:

i. Residual value amounts or purchase-option prices;

ii. Amounts collected by the lessor but paid to a third party, such as taxes, licenses, and registration fees.

4. Credit sale. The regulation does not cover a lease that meets the definition of a credit sale in Regulation Z, 12 CFR 226.2(a)(16), which is defined, in part, as a bailment or lease (unless terminable without penalty at any time by the consumer) under which the consumer:

i. Agrees to pay as compensation for use a sum substantially equivalent to, or in excess of, the total value of the property and services involved; and

ii. Will become (or has the option to become), for no additional consideration or for nominal consideration, the owner of the property upon compliance with the agreement.

5. Agricultural purpose. Agricultural purpose means a purpose related to the production, harvest, exhibition, marketing, transportation, processing, or manufacture of agricultural products by a natural person who cultivates, plants, propagates, or nurtures those agricultural products, including but not limited to the acquisition of personal property and services used primarily in farming. Agricultural products include horticultural, viticultural, and dairy products, livestock, wildlife, poultry, bees, forest products, fish and shellfish, and any products thereof, including processed and manufactured products, and any and all products raised or produced on farms and any processed or manufactured products thereof.

6. Organization or other entity. A consumer lease does not include a lease made to an organization such as a corporation or a government agency or instrumentality. Such a lease is not covered by the regulation even if the leased property is used (by an employee, for example) primarily for personal, family or household purposes, or is guaranteed by or subsequently assigned to a natural person.

7. Leases of personal property incidental to a service. The following leases of personal property are deemed incidental to a service and thus are not subject to the regulation:

i. Home entertainment systems requiring the consumer to lease equipment that enables a television to receive the transmitted programming.

ii. Security alarm systems requiring the installation of leased equipment intended to monitor unlawful entries into a home and in some cases to provide fire protection.

iii. Propane gas service where the consumer must lease a propane tank to receive the service.

8. Safe deposit boxes. The lease of a safe deposit box is not a consumer lease under § 1013.2(e).

9. Threshold amount. A consumer lease is exempt from the requirements of this part if the total contractual obligation exceeds the threshold amount in effect at the time of consummation. The threshold amount in effect during a particular time period is the amount stated in comment 2(e)-11 for that period. The threshold amount is adjusted effective January 1 of each year by any annual percentage increase in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) that was in effect on the preceding June 1. Comment 2(e)-11 will be amended to provide the threshold amount for the upcoming year after the annual percentage change in the CPI-W that was in effect on June 1 becomes available. Any increase in the threshold amount will be rounded to the nearest $100 increment. For example, if the annual percentage increase in the CPI-W would result in a $950 increase in the threshold amount, the threshold amount will be increased by $1,000. However, if the annual percentage increase in the CPI-W would result in a $949 increase in the threshold amount, the threshold amount will be increased by $900. If a consumer lease is exempt from the requirements of this part because the total contractual obligation exceeds the threshold amount in effect at the time of consummation, the lease remains exempt regardless of a subsequent increase in the threshold amount.

10. No increase in the CPI-W. If the CPI-W in effect on June 1 does not increase from the CPI-W in effect on June 1 of the previous year, the threshold amount effective the following January 1 through December 31 will not change from the previous year. When this occurs, for the years that follow, the threshold is calculated based on the annual percentage change in the CPI-W applied to the dollar amount that would have resulted, after rounding, if decreases and any subsequent increases in the CPI-W had been taken into account.

i. Net increases. If the resulting amount calculated, after rounding, is greater than the current threshold, then the threshold effective January 1 the following year will increase accordingly.

ii. Net decreases. If the resulting amount calculated, after rounding, is equal to or less than the current threshold, then the threshold effective January 1 the following year will not change, but future increases will be calculated based on the amount that would have resulted.

11. Threshold. For purposes of § 1013.2(e)(1), the threshold amount in effect during a particular period is the amount stated below for that period.

i. Prior to July 21, 2011, the threshold amount is $25,000.

ii. From July 21, 2011 through December 31, 2011, the threshold amount is $50,000.

iii. From January 1, 2012 through December 31, 2012, the threshold amount is $51,800.

iv. From January 1, 2013 through December 31, 2013, the threshold amount is $53,000.

v. From January 1, 2014 through December 31, 2014, the threshold amount is $53,500.

vi. From January 1, 2015 through December 31, 2015, the threshold amount is $54,600.

vii. From January 1, 2016 through December 31, 2016, the threshold amount is $54,600.

viii. From January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2017, the threshold amount is $54,600.

ix. From January 1, 2018 through December 31, 2018, the threshold amount is $55,800.

x. From January 1, 2019 through December 31, 2019, the threshold amount is $57,200.

xi. From January 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020, the threshold amount is $58,300.

xii. From January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021, the threshold amount is $58,300.

xiii. From January 1, 2022 through December 31, 2022, the threshold amount is $61,000.

xiv. From January 1, 2023 through December 31, 2023, the threshold amount is $66,400.

xv. From January 1, 2024 through December 31, 2024, the threshold amount is $69,500.

2(g) Lessee

1. Guarantors. Guarantors are not lessees for purposes of the regulation.

2(h) Lessor

1. Arranger of a lease. To “arrange” for the lease of personal property means to provide or offer to provide a lease that is or will be extended by another person under a business or other relationship pursuant to which the person arranging the lease (a) receives or will receive a fee, compensation, or other consideration for the service or (b) has knowledge of the lease terms and participates in the preparation of the contract documents required in connection with the lease. To illustrate:

i. An entity that, pursuant to a business relationship, completes the necessary lease agreement before forwarding it for execution to the leasing company (to whom the obligation is payable on its face) is “arranging” for the lease.

ii. An entity that, without receiving a fee for the service, refers a customer to a leasing company that will prepare all relevant contract documents is not “arranging” for the lease.

2. Consideration. The term “other consideration” as used in comment 2(h)-1 refers to an actual payment corresponding to a fee or similar compensation and not to intangible benefits, such as the advantage of increased business, which may flow from the relationship between the parties.

3. Assignees. An assignee may be a lessor for purposes of the regulation in circumstances where the assignee has substantial involvement in the lease transaction. See cf. Ford Motor Credit Co. v. Cenance, 452 U.S. 155 (1981) (held that an assignee was a creditor for purposes of the pre-1980 Truth in Lending Act and Regulation Z because of its substantial involvement in the credit transaction).

4. Multiple lessors. See the commentary to § 1013.3(c).

2(j) Organization

1. Coverage. The term “organization” includes joint ventures and persons operating under a business name.

2(l) Personal Property

1. Coverage. Whether property is personal property depends on state or other applicable law. For example, a mobile home or houseboat may be considered personal property in one state but real property in another.

2(m) Realized Value

1. General. Realized value refers to either the retail or wholesale value of the leased property at early termination or at the end of the lease term. It is not a required disclosure. Realized value is relevant only to leases in which the lessee's liability at early termination or at the end of the lease term typically is based on the difference between the residual value (or the adjusted lease balance) of the leased property and its realized value.

2. Options. Subject to the contract and to state or other applicable law, the lessor may calculate the realized value in determining the lessee's liability at the end of the lease term or at early termination in one of the three ways stated in § 1013.2(m). If the lessor sells the property prior to making the determination about liability, the price received for the property (or the fair market value) is the realized value. If the lessor does not sell the property prior to making that determination, the highest offer or the fair market value is the realized value.

3. Determination of realized value. Disposition charges are not subtracted in determining the realized value but amounts attributable to taxes may be subtracted.

4. Offers. In determining the highest offer for disposition, the lessor may disregard offers that an offeror has withdrawn or is unable or unwilling to perform.

5. Lessor's appraisal. See commentary to § 1013.4(l).

2(o) Security Interest and Security

1. Disclosable interests. For purposes of disclosure, a security interest is an interest taken by the lessor to secure performance of the lessee's obligation. For example, if a bank that is not a lessor makes a loan to a leasing company and takes assignments of consumer leases generated by that company to secure the loan, the bank's security interest in the lessor's receivables is not a security interest for purposes of this part.

2. General coverage. An interest the lessor may have in leased property must be disclosed only if it is considered a security interest under state or other applicable law. The term includes, but is not limited to, security interests under the Uniform Commercial Code; real property mortgages, deeds of trust, and other consensual or confessed liens whether or not recorded; mechanic's, materialman's, artisan's, and other similar liens; vendor's liens in both real and personal property; liens on property arising by operation of law; and any interest in a lease when used to secure payment or performance of an obligation.

3. Insurance exception. The lessor's right to insurance proceeds or unearned insurance premiums is not a security interest for purposes of this part.