Banking Law, Consumer Rights Experts to Discuss State, Federal Banking Policy

Written by Michael Castellon

Date: March 29, 2006
CONTACT: Michael Castellon,

LUBBOCK – As the national debate involving federal preemption of state laws, states’ rights and consumer protection in the banking industry intensifies, professionals from across the nation will converge on Lubbock April 19-21 to lay a foundation of discourse that could likely affect state and federal laws for years to come.

The Texas Tech School of Law is hosting the 2006 Banking Law Symposium, which will feature federal and state officials and consumer rights experts. The purpose of their meeting is to better understand developing policies involving states’ rights in the banking industry.

In recent years, the federal Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Office of Thrift Supervision have aggressively asserted that federal statutes trump state laws on banking policy. The repercussions of this policy are expected to have a major impact on bank customers, especially in terms of fee increases. Critics also argue preemption could severely disadvantage many small state-chartered community banks.

“Our goal is to encourage scholarly debate among federal officials, consumers and bank administrators so that we can examine the pros and cons of this policy as it is being developed,” said Ann Graham, an associate professor of law at Texas Tech and former litigator for the FDIC.

Legislatures and attorneys general in all states, including Texas, New York, California, and Illinois, are concerned that their ability to protect their own state’s banking consumers is being curtailed inappropriately. Federal agencies argue that they are the sole regulators of national banks and thrifts.

Featured speakers will include Texas Banking Commissioner Randall James, Danny Payne, commissioner of the Texas Department of Savings and Mortgage Lending, and Deborah Dakin, senior deputy chief counsel for the Office of Thrift Supervision.

The U.S. Supreme Court is currently considering these issues, although most experts expect Congress to be deciding entity.

For more information on the symposium, visit


CONTACT: Melinda Moore, senior business assistant, Texas Tech School of Law, (806) 742-3990, or