Congressional Quarterly’s Roll Call Covers Sovern’s Blog Battles

Congressional Quarterlys Roll Call Covers Soverns Blog Battles

A June 7th article headlined “Battle of the blogs: Legal experts spar over consumers’ arbitration clauses,” by Steven Harras in CQ Roll Call discusses online debates between Professor Jeff Sovern and the Ballard Spahr firm’s Alan Kaplinsky. Harras opens:

Legal heavyweights who’ve rhetorically sparred online over the actions of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau are at it again, this time over the clauses that limit consumers’ ability to sue their banks.  

St. John’s University School of Law Professor Jeff Sovern and Alan S. Kaplinsky, a partner at the national law firm Ballard Spahr LLP — two leading figures in consumer financial law — are engaged in debate over arbitration clauses and what the CFPB should do about them. 

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The two men have been debating the issue off-and-on for years. 

The pair often spar on legal and consumer financial issues. Kaplinsky’s opinions and analyses appear in Ballard Spahr’s Consumer Finance Monitor blog. Sovern’s Consumer Law & Policy Blog is sponsored by the nonprofit consumer advocacy group Public Citizen. 

The online exchanges between Sovern, who holds views generally favoring stronger consumer protections, and Kaplinsky, more frequently viewed as sympathetic to the financial services industry, have gained traction among private attorneys, government lawyers and financial industry observers. 

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Sovern said that according to Lexis, an online legal research tool, his blog has “been cited dozens of times in law review articles, congressional hearings, and the like.” 

The full article is available on Westlaw.