Washington DC | Dallas TX | Irvine CA

Melissa J. Wachtel

Melissa Wachtel

Melissa J. Wachtel



1300 19th Street NW, 5th Floor
Washington, DC 20036-1609

Melissa focuses primarily on federal and state regulatory and compliance matters related to the financial services industry. Melissa represents and advises non-depository and depository institutions on compliance with federal and state laws and regulations in the mortgage field and in related financial services fields, including collection agencies and title agencies. Melissa advises clients on laws regulating disclosures, agreements, practices, and licensing and approval requirements including RESPA, TILA, ECOA, FCRA, the E-Sign Act, and the financial privacy requirements found in Title V of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act. Melissa also assists companies in preparing policies and procedures for compliance with federal and state laws and regulations; assists companies with examination preparation and responses to regulatory audits and investigations by state and federal regulators, including the CFPB; and prepares multi-state regulatory surveys and analyses of matters pertaining to residential mortgage lending, brokering, and servicing.

Practice Areas


  • George Washington University Law School, J.D., 2008
  • Duke University, B.A., magna cum laude, 2005


  • District of Columbia
  • Maryland

Representative Matters

  • Advised clients on their privacy policies and notices regarding consumer financial information to ensure compliance with the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, Regulation P, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and applicable state laws
  • Advised clients on electronic compliance issues under the federal E-Sign Act and related state laws for activities such as electronic disclosures and submissions, and assisted in preparation in the event of and in responding to data breaches
  • Advised and assisted clients in structuring and creating marketing services, co-marketing, and desk rental arrangements with third-party service providers, including review of underlying marketing materials
  • Advised and assisted mortgage companies in responding to single-state or multistate examinations and in creating policies and procedures to address audit findings
  • Advised mortgage companies regarding compliance with changes resulting from the implementation of the TILA/RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) Rule
  • Advised and assisted mortgage companies in structuring loan originator compensation agreements for loan originators and branch managers
  • Advised and assisted clients in obtaining mortgage lender, broker, and servicer licenses and approvals, as well as structuring transactions or obtaining change of control approvals in connection with the purchase and sale of mortgage entities, collection agencies, and title agencies or approvals with regard to the assets thereof
  • Advised mortgage companies and loan originators regarding required state disclosures and their resulting impact on the licensee’s state licensure


  • Chapter contributor, Real Estate and Mortgage Banking: A New Era of Regulatory Reform (Thomson Reuters 2017-2018)


  • American Bar Association
  • District of Columbia Bar Association
  • Maryland State Bar Association
  • Bar Association of Montgomery County, Maryland
  • Mortgage Bankers Association