CUNA Pushes For Commission-Led CFPB in Brief with Supreme Court

Jan 17, 2020Banks & Credit Unions, Federal Regulation, News

As the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to hear a landmark case (Seila Law v. CFPB) determining whether the structure of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is permissible under the Constitution, the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) recently weighed in, filing a brief arguing that the Bureau instead needs a multi-member leadership commission.

In the brief, CUNA agreed that the single-leadership structure violates the separation of powers because currently, the only way to remove the CFPB’s single director is for cause. Opponents say this is unconstitutional.

“To preserve the consumer-protection benefits that the CFPB provides, while remedying the unconstitutional power vested in the agency’s Director, CUNA advocates that the Court vacate the lower court’s decision and shift the responsibility for fixing the Bureau’s structure to the political branches,” the brief reads.

One of CUNA’s specific notes was that Title X of the Dodd-Frank Act should be deemed unconstitutional, while still giving Congress time to create a suitable commission leadership structure for the Bureau. The structure of Title X is different from the single-director structure of other bureaus, most notably in regulations for removal and succession.

The brief also noted that during the early proposals surrounding the CFPB’s creation, a multi-member, bipartisan leadership structure was favored by many. CUNA has consistently been an advocate for that type of leadership, believing that diverse perspectives would both protect consumers and prevent financial disruption during leadership changes.



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