Emory Bankruptcy Developments Journal


Professor Susan Block-Lieb, the Cooper Family Chair in Urban Legal Issues at Fordham Law, proposes that cities should be considered as an important source of consumer protection. Professor Block-Lieb examines various cities' initiatives to provide debt advice to consumers, enhance consumers' financial inclusion, and enable consumers to register complaints about financial services and possibly to mediate those disputes. It also explores some of the limitations of each of these strategies for consumer financial protection. The Essay next explains why cities can perform these sorts of consumer financial protection initiatives'that is, empowerment initiatives'better than other levels of government. This explanation is focused on cities' concentrated proximity to consumers, their existing infrastructures, and their uniquely pragmatic methods of work. The author concludes by emphasizing the payoffs and limitations of emphasizing cities' expertise in providing empowerment initiatives to resident consumers.