Goodwin, a leading Global 50 law firm, announced today the release of the 2016 Consumer Finance Year in Review, a detailed report that highlights the major litigation, enforcement and regulations that impacted the consumer finance industry in 2016. The second annual report, produced by the firm’s Financial Industry and Consumer Financial Services Litigation groups, is one of the few in the industry that takes an in-depth view of the issues, trends and regulatory developments across a variety of sectors, including mortgage servicing, credit and prepaid cards, credit reporting, student lending, auto lending, debt collection and payday lending, among others.
The report examines recent regulations, lawsuits and enforcement activity by federal agencies, such as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), as well as state-level lawmakers and regulators. The report also analyzes the year ahead and the regulatory uncertainty surrounding the new presidential administration.
“There have been a lot of new regulations and proposed rules over the past year, some of the most impactful of which are still being finalized, creating a level of uncertainty for businesses,” said Sabrina Rose-Smith, partner in Goodwin’s Financial Industry Practice and a co-author of the report. “Compounding this uncertainty is the new administration, which is likely to change enforcement priorities and regulatory objectives.”
“Unsurprisingly, enforcement and regulatory actions were primarily driven by the CFPB in 2016,” said Kyle Tayman, partner in Goodwin’s Financial Industry Practice and a co-author of the report. “The Supreme Court and D.C. federal appellate court also made a big impact in 2016, deciding several high-profile cases that challenged the reach of the CFPB, impacting plaintiffs’ constitutional standing to sue, and affecting the application of debt collection laws to bankruptcy proceedings.”
In addition to covering the major developments in 2016, the report also highlights a number of predictions for 2017 and the impact of the new Trump administration on the consumer finance industry, including:
- An increased focus on regulating FinTech, with more agencies trying to take the lead including the OCC, SEC and CFPB.
- Increased scrutiny and activity from state regulators and enforcers in the face of a mildly relaxed enforcement focus by federal agencies.
- Amendments to Dodd-Frank and the CFPB, such as subjecting the CFPB to the congressional appropriations process and oversight.