Biden Administration Moves to Restore Critical Tool to Fight Housing Discrimination

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), under Secretary Marcia Fudge’s leadership, released a proposed rule that would restore the power of the “disparate impact” standard, a crucial legal tool used to identify and eliminate discrimination. Center for Responsible Lending Senior Policy Counsel Melissa Stegman issued the following statement: Housing discrimination is a stain on our nation’s conscience. It unjustly robs people of their freedom to live where they choose and in turn, to access jobs, education, a healthy environment, and more. Decades of

House Passes Bill to Curb Predatory Lending

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives – following the Senate’s lead – passed, on a bipartisan basis, legislation that will curb the spread of predatory loans carrying annual interest rates near or above 100 percent. The bill, S.J. Res. 15, does this by rescinding a rule, issued late last year by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), which facilitates “rent-a-bank” schemes aimed at evading state usury laws. As the White House has already indicated its support for the bill, it is now expected to be signed into law within the next few days. “Eliminating this

U.S. Supreme Court Decides Regulator of Housing Giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac can be Removed “At Will” by the President

SCOTUS rules that the FHFA leadership structure is unconstitutional WASHINGTON, D.C. – This morning, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) issued a decision affecting housing giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) that financially back every other mortgage in America. The SCOTUS decided, in Collins v. Yellen, that the director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), which regulates and serves as the conservator of the GSEs, can be fired “at will” by the President. Center for Responsible Lending Senior Policy Counsel Melissa Stegman issued the

New HUD Policy Removes Barrier to Homeownership for Student Loan Borrowers by Correcting Inaccurate Underwriting

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Federal Housing Administration (FHA), which is part of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), has updated and corrected how student debt is calculated for FHA-insured mortgages. This move will expand access to homeownership for more potential mortgage borrowers, especially for borrowers of color, first-time homebuyers, millennials, and low-income Americans. “This change removes an unjust and unjustifiable barrier to homeownership. The policy extends the opportunity to build generational wealth to more Black and Latino and low-income families as well

Statement on Ally Bank Ending Overdraft Fees

Today, Ally Bank announced a complete end to its overdraft fees. In response, Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) Senior Policy Counsel Rebecca Borné issued the following statement : The evidence is clear that overdraft fees are levied most frequently on families who can least afford it, disproportionately harming low-income and Black and Latino Americans. Abusive overdraft practices are causing people who are struggling to get by to lose their bank account – something diametrically opposed to the financial industry’s claim it wants to bring more Americans into the mainstream banking system

U.S. Senate Moves to Confirm Kristen Clarke for Justice Department Civil Rights Chief

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, as the country reflects on the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s murder, the U.S. Senate is voting to confirm Kristen Clarke as head of the U.S. Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. Ms. Clarke, who is president of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, will be the first woman, first woman of color, and first Black woman to receive Senate confirmation for the position. “Kristen Clarke is the right person at the right time to serve as Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights,” said Center for Responsible Lending Federal Advocacy Director and

Comprehensive Debt Collection Improvement Act Would Protect Consumers from Predatory Practices

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The United States House of Representatives today passed the Comprehensive Debt Collection Improvement Act (H.R. 2547). Introduced by House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters, the Act is comprised of eight bills that would collectively enact critical debt collection reforms aimed at protecting vulnerable consumers. If passed into law, the Act would, in part, prohibit the collection of medical debt for two years after a procedure, as well as prohibit credit reporting of debt arising from medically necessary procedures. It also would amend the Fair Debt

Advocates Applaud Senate Repeal of National Banking Regulator’s Predatory Lending Rule; Urge the House to Act Soon

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a 52 - 47 vote tonight, the U.S. Senate voted to overturn the OCC’s “fake lender” rule, which allows predatory lenders to evade state interest rate laws by putting a bank’s name on the paperwork. S.J. Res. 15, a resolution under the Congressional Review Act (CRA), was introduced by Senators Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH). Rep. “Chuy” García introduced a parallel resolution, H.J. Res. 35, in the U.S. House of Representatives. Now that the Senate approved the resolution, the House has until the end of this legislative session to vote on it. Advocates

Statement Prior to Senate Vote on Bill to Curb Predatory Lending

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Senate has begun consideration of legislation (S.J. Res. 15) to rescind a federal bank agency rule that facilitates predatory lending. A vote is expected around 5:30 pm et. The rule, issued by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), makes it easier for lenders to charge high interest rates, in violation of state usury laws, through “rent-a-bank” schemes . “The OCC rule promotes illegal, predatory lending that traps financially vulnerable families in debt,” said Center for Responsible Lending Director of State Policy Lisa Stifler , who recently testified

Media Advisory: Hear about Real People Harmed by Rent-a-Bank Lending and Why Congress Must Rescind the OCC’s Rule Now

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Join us today, Monday, May 10 at 2:30 pm ET to hear about the real world impacts of the "fake lender" rule and why Congress must immediately pass S.J. Res. 15 / H.J. Res 35 under the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to repeal the rule. The fake lender rule by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) protects predatory lenders that evade state interest rate laws by laundering their loans through a rogue bank. RSVP now. Hear about: A restaurant owner fighting $67,000 in loans at 268% APR loan , a rate the predatory lenders are justifying by the OCC rule; A disabled