DOJ Settlement May Signal Expanded Liability and Aggressive Enforcement

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This article, which appeared in the ABA's Section of Litigation, Consumer & Civil Rights Newsletter, discusses the Department of Justice's 2010 settlement with two subsidiaries of American International Group (AIG), resolving allegations that the companies engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination against African American borrowers. The $6.1 million settlement reflects the DOJ's increasingly aggressive enforcement posture in fair lending cases, and to what extent that posture has implications for broadened lender liability. The author notes that DOJ is increasingly persistent in its attempts to hold lenders accountable for the actions of third parties such as independent mortgage brokers.

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