The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently lost a case in court against Townstone Financial, a mortgage lending firm based in Chicago. The case involved a redlining lawsuit, which is a form of housing discrimination. The CFPB alleged that Townstone had engaged in discriminatory lending practices in three low-income African American neighborhoods. The jury found in favor of Townstone, and now the CFPB will be appealing the ruling.

Townstone was accused of steering African American and Hispanic borrowers away from mortgage opportunities in certain neighborhoods within Chicago. The CFPB had argued that this constituted discrimination based on racial grounds, as well as violations of the Fair Housing Act and Home Mortgage Disclosure Act. The ruling, however, found that Townstone had not engaged in unlawful lending in the charged neighborhoods.

With the ruling in favor of Townstone, the CFPB recently announced their intention to appeal the ruling. They believe that, despite the ruling, there is still a need for consumer protection in cases such as this. The CFPB had introduced maps into evidence that showed a stark difference in lending levels based on race and income. This, they argued, was evidence of Townstone’s discriminatory practices, and they intend to fight for consumer protection in the appeals process.

The CFPB has been very active in taking legal action against mortgage lenders, in order to protect consumers from potential predatory practices. The Townstone case is just one example of the CFPB’s efforts to ensure mortgage lenders are engaging in fair and equitable lending practices. The bureau will continue to work to ensure that consumers, regardless of race or income, have access to the mortgage opportunities that they deserve.

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