Authorized by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (the "CFPB") is an agency of the United States government that regulates banks, credit unions, debt collectors, and many other sectors of the American financial services industry.
The United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (the "D.C. Circuit") made headlines in October, 2016 when it ruled in PHH Corp. v. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, 839 F.3d 1 (D.C. Cir. 2016), that the CFPB's single-director structure, which permits removal of the director only "for cause," was unconstitutional. On February 16, 2017, however, the D.C. Circuit took a relatively rare step when it granted the CFPB's petition for a rehearing en banc. While a panel of three judges heard the original case, all of the D.C. Circuit's judges will participate in the May 24, 2017 rehearing.
In granting the CFPB's petition for en banc rehearing, the D.C. the Circuit vacated its October 11, 2016 ruling. This means that the constitutionality of the CFPB's single-director management structure will remain an open question at least until the date of the rehearing.
We anticipate that a wide range of both consumer groups and advocates for the financial services industry will submit amicus curiae briefs to the D.C. Circuit later this month. Fitch Law Partners will closely monitor developments as the PHH v. CFPB case unfolds.
For more information about Fitch Law Partners LLP's banking law practice, please visit the banking law page on the firm's web site, www.fitchlp.com.