The confirmation of Richard Cordray, by the U.S. Senate, as director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is bringing hope to consumer debtors. Opposed by banks, financial firms, and many conservative senators, the CFPB was the brainchild of Massachusetts’ Democratic Senator, Elizabeth Warren. The agency’s initial goal was to reign in the risky consumer financial products offered by banks and financial firms that contributed to the 2008 financial crisis as well as the creation of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act. The CFPB is now is the financial watchdog that oversees bank and non-bank financial firms with the sole goal of protecting consumers.
Since its inception, the CFPB has set up a system for consumers to register complaints about banks, credit bureaus, debt collections, and student lenders. This system has been used by over 100 thousand consumers. It also has created new rules targeting underwriting, servicing, and loan officer incentives within the mortgage industry. The CFPB has also returned more than $400 million to consumers who have been wronged by bank and non-bank financial firms, such as Capital One Financial Corp. and American Express Co.
Cordray was initially appointed to the position by President Obama using a recess appointment. National Labor Relations Board v. Canning, 12-1281, which challenges the President’s right to make recess appointments, is currently under consideration by the U.S. Supreme Court.
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