Whistleblowers Get Protections Under Consumer Financial Protection Act with OSHA’s Interim Final Rule

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has put out an interim final rule that tackles complaints of retaliation under the Consumer Financial Protection Act. Under the CFPA, employees are protected against retaliation from entities that provide consumer financial services and products that are mainly for family, household, or personal use, including: certain kinds loans, residential mortgages, modifications to mortgage loans, relief services regarding foreclosure, debt relief, consumer credit, and other goods and services. The interim final rule sets up burdens of proof, procedures, statutes of limitations, and remedies.

At Altman & Altman, LLP, our Massachusetts whistleblower lawyers are here to protect the rights of those who report when a fraud is being committed against a state or the federal government. We are here to help whistleblowers in their attempts to file a successful case while making sure their rights are protected throughout the entire process. Contact our Boston law firm today.

The CFPA protects workers that reports certain types of violations to the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, an employer, or a government entity. The interim rule sets up time frames and processes for how to deal with these retaliation complaints, as well as procedures involving employee complaints to OSHA, OSHA probes, appeals of OSHA decisions, and other matters.

The regulations stipulate that an employee with a complaint has protections under the whistleblower provisions as long as he/she has an objectively reasonable belief and a subjective, good-faith belief that he/she was let go or retaliated against in any other way that violates CFPA. Examples of actions that could be considered retaliation against a whistleblower and grounds for a complaint:

• Lay off • Firing • Reassigning • Decreased hours
• Lowered pay • Demotion • Disciplining • Refusing overtime • Bypassing for promotion • Refusing benefits • Blacklisting • Not hiring • Not rehiring • Making threats • Intimidation

Complaints must be turned in within 180 days of the alleged violation. Based on data from the investigation, the agency has 60 days to offer written findings regarding whether the case has grounds. An administrative law judge will then look at the case and render a ruling unless a petition has been submitted to the Administrative Review Board, who would have 30 days to grant review of the matter. Otherwise, the decision by the ALJ is final.

We know how much courage it took to come forward and you should have the protections and representation you need. Contact our Boston whistleblower lawyers today.

Filing Whistleblower Complaints under the Consumer Financial Protection Act (CFPA), OSHA (PDF)

Interim Final Rule, OSHA

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

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