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Andrew L. Sandler and Michelle L. Rogers Authored a Law360 Article, "The Rise Of The Consumer"


Michelle L. Rogers

The financial crisis had a profound impact on the regulatory structure applicable to the financial services industry and the consumer experience when purchasing financial products and services. The prudential regulation model whereby regulators worked with financial institutions to ensure safe and sound practices and compliance with regulatory requirements was largely replaced with an enforcement-based regulatory approach. This development was most pronounced in the area of consumer compliance. The Dodd-Frank Act created a new consumer protection regulator, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and that agency swiftly supplanted the bank regulators and the Federal Trade Commission in setting consumer protection expectations. Whereas bank regulators viewed the safety and soundness of the banking system as the most important regulatory priority, the CFPB elevated the fair treatment of consumers above all other regulatory priorities. At the same time, internet innovation has given the consumer a myriad of outlets and opportunities to voice their criticism of everything from their latest lunch experience to the performance of their financial regulator (yes, even the CFPB has a Yelp profile). In combination, these developments have provided the consumer with a loud and powerful presence in the regulatory dialogue, and fundamentally altered the way financial services firms and regulators think about the consumer experience.

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Originally published in Law360; reprinted with permission.

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