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Politics & MoneyMortgage

The housing industry’s disparate impact hopes

Groups argue rule should incorporate 2015 Supreme Court ruling

HW+ HUD

Mortgage industry groups on Tuesday made their voices heard in response to the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s proposed reinstatement of its 2013 disparate impact rule.

Numerous industry stakeholders asked HUD to make some changes to the regulation to raise and further explain the threshold for disparate impact claims. A homeowners insurer trade group, which has mounted successful legal challenges of the standard in the past, said it sees no reason the rule should apply to its industry.

The argument for the higher threshold for claims arose following a 2015 Supreme Court decision which upheld the disparate impact regulation. The 5-4 decision said that disparate impact claims are included in the Fair Housing Act, but it more specifically defined the three-step process to prove a strong link between a business practice and discrimination.

But the mortgage industry and HUD don’t see eye-to-eye on how that decision should be taken into account.

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