The consumer financial services industry began 2017 with optimism, as well as considerable uncertainty with the new Administration in the White House, knowing only that the year would bring change. And change it did bring (along with some drama that the new Administration is known to stir). Looking back now at the leadership change at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the turnover experienced at various regulatory agencies, the continued rise of state-level actors, and the new rules, lawsuits, and enforcement actions of 2017, has provided the industry with lessons learned and portends what is ahead for 2018. In order to stay competitive—and to avoid government and public scrutiny and costly consumer litigation—lenders must stay on top and ahead of changes in the law, new regulatory interpretations, and shifting legislative and enforcement priorities. Through our LenderLaw Watch and Consumer Finance Enforcement Watch blogs, Goodwin’s Financial Industry Practice analyzed key industry, legal, and regulatory developments and provided real-time reporting on a range of federal and state consumer finance enforcement activity, keeping our clients current and informed on the latest happenings and their impact on the industry. We also continued to develop and grow our proprietary database of information on enforcement actions, allowing us to provide interactive data and quantitative enforcement trend analysis in real-time.
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