CFPB Files Petition with Supreme Court for Hearing on Constitutionality of its Funding Case

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has made its decision — it will fight to maintain its current funding mechanism before the Supreme Court — choosing to file a petition for the highest court in the land to hear its appeal rather than file a petition for an en banc review of the ruling before the entire Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, a panel of which released a ruling last month saying the way in which the Bureau gets the money it needs to operate is unconstitutional.

A copy of the petition in the case of Consumer Financial Protection Bureau v. Community Financial Services Association of America et al. can be accessed by clicking here.

The Supreme Court must now decide if it wants to hear arguments in the case. If it does, it will put the case on its docket and schedule oral arguments. If it doesn’t, the ruling from the Fifth Circuit will stand and the CFPB’s funding structure will be deemed to be unconstitutional. The Community Financial Services Association now has 30 days to file an opposition to the CFPB’s petition, after which the CFPB can file a reply and then the documents are submitted to the Supreme Court justices to make a decision on whether to hear arguments in the case.

In its petition, the CFPB argues that the Supreme Court should hear its arguments why the Fifth Circuit made an error with its ruling and it should do so “promptly,” even going as far as to hear the arguments during its current term. The CFPB notes that defendants in enforcement actions are using the Fifth Circuit’s ruling to seek dismissals and that “new challenges to the Bureau’s rules and other actions can be expected to multiply in the weeks and months to come, and will presumably be filed in the Fifth Circuit whenever possible.”

Not only is it messing with current cases, but the Fifth Circuit’s ruling has the potential to impact past enforcement actions and rulemaking as well, the CFPB noted in its petition.

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