Equal Credit Opportunity Act Disparate Impact

News & Analysis as of

Are Disparate Impact Claims Legally Cognizable Under ECOA?

In Texas Dep’t of Housing and Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project, 135 S. Ct. 2507 (2015), the Supreme Court held that disparate impact claims are legally cognizable under the Fair Housing Act (“FHA”). As a...more

Fair Lending Director Ficklin Discusses Small Business Lending, LGBT issues, LEP consumers and Inclusive Communities at ABA...

Last Thursday, I had the pleasure of teaching a class on payments and banking products to new lawyers at the American Bar Association’s Consumer Financial Services Institute. I arrived early for the class and got to hear a...more

Supreme Court Decision May Make It Easier for Borrowers to Sue for Discrimination

A recent decision of the Supreme Court of the United States may make it easier for borrowers to claim discrimination when denied a loan. In late June 2015, the Court addressed whether lawsuits brought under the Fair Housing...more

CFPB Refers Another Auto Finance Company to DOJ on Disparate Impact Allegations

Not long after taking action against American Honda Finance Corporation under the disparate impact doctrine for allegedly discriminatory auto loan pricing, the CFPB has struck again—this time reportedly referring Santander...more

ABA seeks supervisory and enforcement standards consistent with Inclusive Communities

The American Bankers Association has sent a letter to the DOJ, Fed, OCC, FDIC, HUD and CFPB requesting confirmation “in interagency guidance, updated exam procedures, and where appropriate amended regulations that the...more

Supreme Court Slams The Brakes On Challenge To Disparate Act

As of now, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) prohibits dealers from unintentional, or “disparate impact,” discrimination in setting dealer reserves in auto financing. This disparate impact can result from policies or...more

Auto Finance Company Agrees to Change Dealer Compensation Policy to Settle CFPB and DOJ Fair Lending Claims

To resolve charges by the Consumer Federal Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) that it engaged in unlawful discrimination in violation of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA), American Honda...more

CFPB Brings First ECOA Disparate Impact Action Post-Inclusive Communities

Just over 18 months after bringing a disparate impact-based ECOA case against Ally Financial (“Ally”) for discriminatory auto loan pricing, the CFPB has struck again—this time taking action against American Honda Finance...more

The U.S. Supreme Court’s Decision in Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc.

In Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc., 576 U.S. ___, 2015 WL 2473449 (Jun. 25, 2015), the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, held that disparate impact discrimination...more

Special Alert: Disparate Impact Under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act After Inclusive Communities

On June 25, the Supreme Court in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc. held that disparate-impact claims are cognizable under the Fair Housing Act (FHA). The Court, in a 5-4...more

Supreme Court upholds ‘disparate impact’ under the FHA but emphasizes that claims cannot rely on statistics alone

In a much-anticipated decision, the U.S. Supreme Court held in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project (“Inclusive Communities”) that claims of disparate impact discrimination are...more

Supreme Court Allows Disparate-Impact Claims Under the Fair Housing Act

The Supreme Court held today that the Fair Housing Act (FHA) not only prohibits intentional discrimination, but also establishes liability for practices that result in a disparate impact on minority groups. Texas Department...more

House approves amendment prohibiting use of appropriated funds for DOJ disparate impact litigation under the FHA

Yesterday, the House of Representatives approved an amendment to H.R. 2578, the Fiscal Year 2016 Commerce, Justice, and Science Appropriations Act, that would bar the use of appropriated funds by the Department of Justice to...more

Court Tosses HUD’s Disparate Impact Rule: Is Protection for Lenders from Disparate Impact Claims on the Horizon?

Since the 1970s, courts have routinely held that the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq., may remedy housing discrimination proven through use of the disparate impact theory. The doctrine of disparate impact permits a...more

CFPB White Paper on Methodology for Evaluating Alleged Racial Disparities in Lending

The Equal Credit Opportunity Act (“ECOA”) forbids discrimination by a creditor on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status or age. As the CFPB has acknowledged, particularly in the non-mortgage...more

CFPB Offers More Details On Plans To Supervise Auto Finance Market

On September 17, the CFPB released new information about its plans to supervise and enforce auto finance companies’ compliance with consumer financial laws, including fair lending laws. As it indicated it would earlier this...more

Disparate impact cases against HUD: Illinois federal court issues decision; update on D.C. case

Because of their potential impact on the CFPB’s conclusion that the ECOA and Regulation B encompass disparate impact claims, we have been following two insurance industry lawsuits involving a challenge to HUD’s Federal...more

Another Supreme Court disparate impact case?

The U.S. Supreme Court could have its third opportunity since 2012 to provide clarity with respect to disparate impact claims under the Fair Housing Act and (by analogy) the Equal Credit Opportunity Act. After losing on...more

Disparate Impact Remains Fair Lending Risk To Banks

Lenders seeking judicial relief from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s heightened enforcement of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act were left disappointed by the settlement of Mt. Holly v. Mt. Holly Gardens Citizens in...more

Mt. Holly Settled: Disparate Impact Questions Linger

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and other agencies that apply disparate impact tests under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) appear to have dodged another bullet. The background, recent events, and...more

Tentative settlement reportedly reached in Mount Holly

It is looking like our prediction that Township of Mount Holly v. Mt. Holly Gardens Citizens in Action, Inc. would settle before the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral argument was accurate. Late yesterday, the Wall Street Journal...more

Auto Notes, Fall 2013: Dealer Markup Practices - In a New Era of Federal Enforcement

In March 2013, the U.S. Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) announced that it would closely scrutinize dealer reserve (“markup”) practices. The federal concern is that dealer markups may result in an illegal disparate...more

New York Federal District Court Holds FHA Disparate Impact Claims Against Mortgage Securitizer Timely, ECOA Claims Time-Barred

On July 25, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York held that a putative class of African-American borrowers can pursue claims against a financial institution alleged to have financed and purchased...more

CFPB issues ECOA baseline review procedures for examiners

The CFPB has issued “ECOA Baseline Review Procedures” to be used by its examiners. (The CFPB has labeled the procedures “guidance” and did not add them to its Supervision and Examination Manual.)...more

Infobytes - A Weekly In-depth review of news & developments in the financial services industry - July 26, 2013


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