Banking and Finance Law Daily FSOC pushes for expedited arguments in MetLife appeal
Friday, August 19, 2016

FSOC pushes for expedited arguments in MetLife appeal

By John M. Pachkowski, J.D.

The Financial Stability Oversight Council has filed a motion with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, renewing its call for the court to expedite oral argument in its appeal of a federal district decision rescinding FSOC’s designation of MetLife, Inc. as a non-bank systemically important financial institution.

In late March 2016, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued an order ruling that the SIFI designation was arbitrary and capricious and that FSOC acted contrary to its published guidance without explaining, or even acknowledging, the deviation. The decision, rendered by Judge Rosemary Collyer, also found that FSOC refused to consider the costs that the SIFI designation imposed on MetLife. Ultimately, the district unsealed the decision (see Banking and Finance Law Daily, April 7, 2017).

As the case started its way through the appellate process, the Court of Appeals set an expedited briefing schedule. FSOC filed its brief in mid-June and Metlife filed its brief in mid-August (see Banking and Finance Law Daily, June 17, 2016 and Aug. 17, 2016).

During the briefing period, MetLife’s counsel, Eugene Scalia, indicated that he would be "unavailable for oral argument in the month of October or the first part of November" due to an upcoming trial in another matter. In early August, Scalia also notified the appeals court that his trial in the other matter had been continued to November 3 and would not be available for oral argument "between the last week of October and the second week of December" but is now available for argument earlier in October.

In its motion for an expedited oral argument, FSOC noted the "urgency of this appeal" since "the district court’s order nullifies an important action that the nation’s financial regulators collectively took in response to a potential threat to U.S. financial stability." FSOC concluded, "Prompt resolution is essential."

Companies: MetLife, Inc.

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