July 11, 2017
Washington, D.C. (July 11, 2017)—Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) President and CEO Camden R. Fine released this statement on the Arbitration Agreements final rule issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), which will essentially prohibit the use of consumer arbitration agreements.
“ICBA is very concerned that the CFPB’s Arbitration Agreements final rule removes arbitration as a meaningful option for community banks to resolve consumer disputes. Arbitration has been a useful and cost-effective tool for both customers and those community banks that use arbitration agreements to settle customer disputes. It isn’t economically feasible under the new rule for community banks to continue to pay the costs associated with arbitration for customers if banks are forced to carry the high legal costs associated with class-action lawsuits. Community banks invest heavily in resolving customer complaints amicably—it is at the core of their business model; however, when claims are unable to be resolved, arbitration is a cost-effective and much more efficient option for the customer and bank over judicial litigation.
“ICBA is also concerned that the collection and possible dissemination of arbitral data—even if it is anonymized—could lead to the re-identification of consumers and the release of sensitive personal and financial information.”
The Independent Community Bankers of America®, the nation’s voice for more than 5,800 community banks of all sizes and charter types, is dedicated exclusively to representing the interests of the community banking industry and its membership through effective advocacy, best-in-class education and high-quality products and services. For more information, visit ICBA’s website at www.icba.org.