CFPB facing ‘existential threat’ following appeals court funding ruling


The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), created by the Dodd-Frank Act with provisions to shield its director and funding mechanism against political headwinds, has found those safeguards to be ineffective against unsympathetic courts.

Under Dodd-Frank, the CFPB was structured to be funded through the Federal Reserve, not Congress. Agency executive directors were appointed to five-year terms, in part to prevent them from being targeted for dismissal when the presidency changed hands.

On Oct. 19, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans found the CFPB’s funding mechanism to be unconstitutional. That decision favored a payday lender, but it could affect all lawsuits filed against the CFPB in the Fifth Circuit, legal experts said.

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