Christopher J. Willis

Christopher J. Willis

Ballard Spahr LLP

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Disparate Impact to Supreme Court Again?

Yet another Fair Housing Act disparate impact case may find its way to the U.S. Supreme Court. After losing on appeal at the Fifth Circuit in March, the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (Texas DHCA) recently...more

6/2/2014 - Appeals Certiorari Disparate Impact Fair Housing Fair Housing Act HUD SCOTUS Section 8 Tax Credits

DOJ Settles Fair Lending Case against Auto Dealer

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) recently settled a fair lending lawsuit against Union Auto Sales, Inc., a California automobile dealer. This means that, once again, a DOJ attempt to use disparate impact evidence to...more

9/24/2013 - Car Dealerships Discrimination Disparate Impact DOJ Fair Lending Settlement

Supreme Court Agrees Again To Decide Critical Disparate Impact Questions under the Fair Housing Act

The question of whether plaintiffs suing under the Fair Housing Act may bring disparate impact claims is back on the U.S. Supreme Court's docket as a result of the Court's decision today to grant certiorari in Mount Holly v....more

6/17/2013 - CFPB Discrimination Disparate Impact ECOA Fair Lending FHA Redevelopment SCOTUS

Decision on Mt. Holly cert petition expected on Monday

On Monday, June 17, we expect the U.S. Supreme Court to announce whether it will grant the petition for certiorari in Township of Mount Holly v. Mt. Holly Gardens Citizens in Action, Inc. The petition is among the certiorari...more

6/13/2013 - Disparate Impact FHA HUD Mount Holly SCOTUS

Auto finance: can we really call disparate impact “discrimination”?

I want to thank Jeff Sovern over at the Public Citizen Consumer Law & Policy Blog for having an interesting back-and-forth with me over the last week about the application of the disparate impact theory of liability to dealer...more

4/1/2013 - Automotive Industry Car Dealerships CFPB Discrimination Disparate Impact ECOA Fair Lending

How the CFPB’s stance on ECOA in auto finance will raise consumer prices

Ever since the CFPB’s release of its bulletin relating to disparate impact analysis of dealer rate participation last week, the press and consumer advocacy groups have been buzzing about the Bureau’s stance and its potential...more

3/28/2013 - Automotive Industry Car Dealerships CFPB Dealer Rate Participation Disparate Impact ECOA Financing

The CFPB Stretches ECOA Past the Breaking Point with Auto Finance

In a story released last night, Carter Dougherty at Bloomberg reports that the CFPB has warned “at least four banks” that it may take enforcement action against them under ECOA, alleging that a “policy” of “allowing” dealers...more

2/22/2013 - Automotive Industry CFPB Discrimination Disparate Impact ECOA Enforcement Financial Institution Liability Financing Retail Installment Sales Contracts

DOJ Settles Another ‘Pattern or Practice’ Fair Lending Case

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) recently settled a fair lending lawsuit against Texas Champion Bank. This means that, once again, a DOJ attempt to use disparate impact evidence to establish that a lender engaged in a...more

2/21/2013 - Consumer Lenders Discrimination Disparate Impact DOJ ECOA Fair Lending National Origin Pattern or Practice Settlement Uniform Pricing

HUD Issues Final ‘Discriminatory Effects’ Rule

The Department of Housing and Urban Development has issued a final rule that provides that if a practice has a "discriminatory effect," HUD or a private plaintiff can establish liability under the Fair Housing Act (FHA), even...more

2/13/2013 - Burden of Proof Discriminatory Effects Rule Disparate Impact FHA HUD

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