Welcome to the next episode of 'Law & Order'

Welcome to the next episode of ‘Law & Order’

The US House of Representatives has voted in favour of house joint resolution (HJR) 111 to repeal the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) final rule on arbitration agreements, reports Paybefore (Banking Technology‘s sister publication).

The vote was 231-190 with Rep. Walter Jones (North Carolina) the lone Republican joining the Democrats with a no vote.

To refresh your memory, the bureau contended that its final rule would assure consumers “get their day in court,” and will “deter wrongdoing by restoring consumers’ right to join together to pursue justice and relief through group lawsuits”.

There is no timetable for the Senate to take up the companion resolution (SJR 47), which was introduced on 20 July by Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo (R-Idaho). Since the Senate is more focused on budget and health care battles at the moment, it’s unlikely the resolution will be voted on until after the August recess.

The resolution has been referred to the Senate Banking Committee, where it faces staunch opposition from Democrats, including ranking Democrat Sherrod Brown (Ohio) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Massachusetts).

Sen. Brown vowed to fight the repeal of the arbitration rule and has introduced separate legislation to enable victims of the Wells Fargo fake account scandal to join class action litigation against the bank. The CFPB’s final rule does not apply to those Wells Fargo customers. It would only apply to agreements made after the compliance date, which is now 19 March 2018.

If the Senate can pass its Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution on arbitration, the president is expected to sign it. That would prohibit the CFPB from issuing any future rules on arbitration agreements.