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Chopra Confirmed as CFPB Director

By a narrow 50-48 vote along party lines, Rohit Chopra was confirmed yesterday by the U.S. Senate to become the Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.  Chopra previously served as the Bureau’s assistant director and was its first student loan ombudsman.  Most recently, Chopra served as a commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission for the past three years where he conveyed his penchant for aggressive enforcement of larger institutional violators and advocated for monetary relief from violators outside of the authority provided under Section 13(b) of the FTC Act (we previously discussed Section 13(b) in earlier Consumer Finance & FinTech Blogs herehere, and here).

Chopra’s confirmation will undoubtedly solidify the Bureau’s more aggressive oversight of financial services companies than occurred under the bureau’s previous director under the Trump administration, Kathy Kraninger.  Such more aggressive oversight has already been occurring over the last few months under the leadership of the Bureau’s acting director, Dave Uejio (we discussed the Bureau’s latest enforcement posture in earlier Consumer Finance & FinTech Blog posts herehere, and here).

Putting It Into Practice:  Among the things, we can expect to see the following from the Bureau under Director Chopra’s leadership:

  • A high likelihood of a return to “regulation by enforcement,” which often left the financial services industry unable to determine exactly what sort of activities are permissible and what activities are not permissible, and occasionally resulted in the CFPB providing rulings on the law that were inconsistent with the plain language of consumer protection laws, including RESPA in particular.

  • More aggressive enforcement actions, including actions against companies that do not deal directly with consumers at all for aiding and abetting other parties in the conduct of unfair, deceptive or abusive practices. For example, the CFPB recently sued a software company that it alleges facilitated unlawful conduct by credit-repair businesses, even though it did not sue any of the businesses actually engaging in the unlawful conduct (previously covered in a Consumer Finance & FinTech Blog post here).

  • Actions against corporate officers who oversee or carry out a company’s allegedly unlawful conduct.

  • More rule making.  The CFPB has already proposed this year data collection requirements in connection with small business loans (previously covered in a Consumer Finance & FinTech Blog post here).

 

Copyright © 2022, Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP.National Law Review, Volume XI, Number 274
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About this Author

Moorari Shah Bankruptcy Lawyer Sheppard Mullin Law Firm
Partner

Moorari Shah is a partner in the Finance and Bankruptcy Practice Group in the firm's Los Angeles and San Francisco offices. 

Areas of Practice

Moorari combines deep in-house and law firm experience to deliver practical, business-minded legal advice. He represents banks, fintechs, mortgage companies, auto lenders, and other nonbank institutions in transactional, licensing, regulatory compliance, and government enforcement matters covering mergers and acquisitions, consumer and commercial lending, equipment finance and leasing, and supervisory examinations,...

213-617-4171
A.J. S. Dhaliwal Bankruptcy Attorney Sheppard Mullin Washington DC
Associate

A.J. is an associate in the Finance and Bankruptcy Practice Group in the firm's Washington, D.C. office. 

A.J. has over a decade of experience helping banks, non-bank financial institutions, and other companies providing financial products and services in a wide range of matters including government enforcement actions, civil litigation, regulatory examinations, and internal investigations.

With a diversified regulatory, compliance, and enforcement background, A.J. counsels financial institutions in matters involving...

202-747-2323
Sherwin Root Corporate Attorney Sheppard Mullin Los Angeles
Attorney

Mr. Root is a senior attorney in the Corporate Practice Group in the firm's Los Angeles office.

Practice Areas

Mr. Root handles transactions and regulatory issues for clients in the financial services industry, including banks, thrifts, and mortgage banking companies, and general corporate matters.  He is a former Senior Counsel at Home Savings of America, FSB, where he was the primary attorney responsible for legal matters relating to residential lending.

213-617-5465
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