Senate kills rule that let customers sue their bank


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“When people are cheated, they believe they have the right to go to court,” said Paul Bland, executive director of Public Justice. “The next time something like Equifax happens, those Senators are going to have to own this.”

If the rule had been fully in effect when Equifax offered the service, it would have been banned from including the clause.

Mandatory-arbitration clauses already are prohibited in mortgage contracts, by the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform act.

Congressional Republicans, along with the banking industry and some other business groups, have had a bull’s eye on the arbitration rule since the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued it July 10. The Republican-dominated House approved the resolution on July 25.

Since then, it idled in the Senate Banking Committee while Republican leaders sought to shore up support for the measure. Tuesday night’s vote was 51-50, with Vice President Pence casting the tie-breaking vote. Just two Republicans voted against the repeal: Senators Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and John Kennedy of Louisiana.

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