Aguayo v. U.S. Bank
Public Justice is co-counsel in this appeal of a district court decision finding that federal banking law preempts California consumer protection law requiring that consumers be given accurate notice when their cars are repossessed. In Aguayo, Public Justice argues that there is no federal preemption (1) because the lender, a national bank, contractually agreed to comply with the state consumer protection law, and (2) because the federal regulation at issue — as well as a century of Supreme Court precedent — expressly preserves from preemption state laws that govern debt collection.
Public Justice also notes that a strong presumption against preemption applies, even in the context of national banks, whenever states legislate in an area of historic state presence.
On August 1, 2011, the Ninth Circuit ruled in favor of Mr. Aguayo. U.S. Bank filed a petition for certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court. Public Justice filed a brief in opposition to certiorari.
Public Justice’s Paul Bland, Matt Wessler and Spencer Wilson are working on Aguayo with Michael Lindsey of San Diego and Carol Brewer and Andrew Ogilvie of Anderson, Ogilvie & Brewer LLP in San Francisco. Public Justice’s former Brayton-Thornton Attorney Melanie Hirsch also worked on this case.