The Southwest Airlines Debacle
CL&P Blog
by Paul Levy
1M ago
A good technical explanation and a refreshing suggestion:  that the remedy is removing the liability shield and allowing the threat of serious financial consequences to counteract the incentives to limit protections for the flying public ..read more
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Wells Fargo fined $3.7 billion for illegal activity including unjust foreclosures and vehicle repossessions
CL&P Blog
by Allison Zieve
1M ago
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau today ordered Wells Fargo Bank to pay more than $2 billion in redress to consumers and a $1.7 billion civil penalty for legal violations across several of its largest product lines. The bank’s illegal conduct led to billions of dollars in financial harm to its customers and, for thousands of customers, the loss of their vehicles and homes. Consumers were illegally assessed fees and interest charges on auto and mortgage loans, had their cars wrongly repossessed, and had payments to auto and mortgage loans misapplied by the bank. Wells Fargo also charged ..read more
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Tesla buyers forced to arbitrate disputes
CL&P Blog
by Allison Zieve
1M ago
The New York Times reports: Until last month, a class-action lawsuit by Tesla owners looked as if it would reveal new details about the carmaker’s self-driving technology, which has been blamed for serious accidents and deaths. But then Tesla deployed a legal strategy that has allowed it to avoid the kind of attention-grabbing lawsuits other carmakers regularly contend with. The company asked a judge to send the case to an arbitrator, who would hear it in private. Tesla’s gambit is likely to succeed because of a provision in the contracts that the company’s customers agree to when they buy el ..read more
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New FCRA case worth teaching: Bibbs v. TransUnion
CL&P Blog
by Jeff Sovern
1M ago
by Jeff Sovern As I prepare to teach consumer law in the spring, I'm leaning towards adding a new case to the course, Bibbs v. TransUnion, LLC, 43 F.4th 331 (3rd Cir. 2022). First, take a look at what the court called a snapshot of the plaintiff's credit report:   Do you understand it (if it's hard to read because of its size, try zooming in on your browser)? If not, you may not be a reasonable reader, the standard the Bibbs court applied in determining that the credit report satisfied the FCRA's accuracy requirement for credit bureaus. The FCRA requires that credit bureaus "follow reaso ..read more
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Emily Flitter's book The White Wall: Highly recommended for those interested in discrimination in consumer transactions
CL&P Blog
by Jeff Sovern
1M ago
by Jeff Sovern New York Times reporter Emily Flitter's book The White Wall: How Big Finance Bankrupts Black America is an exploration of racism in American financial institutions, including banks, insurers, and brokerage houses. The book includes stories of how Black customers and employees are mistreated by these institutions, and places their treatment in a broader context. Flitter was undoubtedly finished with the manuscript before the Chamber of Commerce sued the CFPB for declaring discrimination unfair (an event Flitter covered for the Times) but somehow I suspect she would not have been ..read more
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Report urges major changes at FDA
CL&P Blog
by Allison Zieve
1M ago
The Washington Post reports that an outside group that was asked to examine problems at the Food and Drug Administration in the wake of an infant formula crisis this year offered a scathing indictment of the agency’s structure and culture and recommended major restructuring. The task force’s first suggestion was to create separate food and drug administrations within HHS, which would require approval from Congress. Less ambitious options included separating the food and drug arms but keeping them within a single agency, and creating a new deputy commissioner position with authority for overse ..read more
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Judge strikes down regulation on graphic warnings for cigarettes
CL&P Blog
by Allison Zieve
1M ago
In 2010, Congress passed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, which, among other things, required the Food and Drug Administration to issue a rule requiring graphic warning labels covering the top half of the front and back of cigarette packs and 20% of cigarette advertising. Ruling in a case challenging the regulation, brought by cigarette company RJ Reynolds and other tobacco companies, a federal judge in Texas ruled yesterday that the FDA's graphic warnings for cigarettes violate the First Amendment and vacated the FDA regulation. The court's decision is here. A statement ..read more
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Poll shows broad support for CFPB
CL&P Blog
by Allison Zieve
1M ago
The Center for Responsible Lending reports: "New data from the bipartisan polling team Lake Research Partners and Chesapeake Beach Consultingi shows that voters across the political spectrum overwhelmingly support the ongoing mission of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to regulate the financial industry and protect consumers. The new findings are consistent with over 10 years of opinion research demonstrating strong public support for the agency’s role and work. "Voters are strongly supportive of a variety of specific protections aimed at new types of financial products and wan ..read more
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"Ringless voicemails" to cell phones are subject to robocalling restrictions
CL&P Blog
by Allison Zieve
2M ago
The Federal Communications Commission recently issued a unanimous decision on ringless voicemails — that is, messages left in voicemail boxes without ringing the consumers' cell phones. The FCC determined that ringless voicemails are “calls” and, therefore, require consumers’ prior express consent under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. The FCC's press release and ruling are available here ..read more
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CPSC issues rule to protect children from strangulation by window covering cords. Industry association sues.
CL&P Blog
by Allison Zieve
2M ago
Nearly half of the children caught in cords for shades, blinds, or other window coverings die -- close to 100 kids died of strangulation from window covering cords in 2021 -- according to data from the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Two years ago, Canada announced a regulation strictly limiting the length of window covering cords and adopting other requirements to protect children. The regulation went into effect earlier this year. On November 28, the CPSC issued a similar regulation. The CPSC regulation applies to window coverings manufactured after after next May. Two days later, the Wi ..read more
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