The U.S. financial system is built around a complex network that facilitates exchanges between lenders and buyers. This network enables a plethora of transactions – many of which involving large sums of money and other means of exchange – in areas such as banking, insurance, consumer finance, investing, funding and securities. As might be imagined, this system is heavily regulated which serves to both ensure the safety and soundness of the financial system, and to protect consumers through enforcement of the many federal and state laws and regulations.
Like many other sectors, the financial sector is continuously adapting to the changing global financial marketplace. As the trading floors closed due to COVID-19, there was a rapid move to digitization and digital engagement. Similarly, the trend toward contactless banking increased, requiring banks and lending institutions to introduce new finance apps or upgrade old ones.
Unrelated to COVID, a relatively new and growing area of patent and trade secret protection and litigation involves inventions in new types of loans, mortgages, credit, derivatives, real estate, and other types of financial transactions. And cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, which are payments that circulate without the backing of a monetary authority such as governments or banks, are seeing increasing litigation, including class actions, in the areas of fraud, misrepresentation, and breach of fiduciary duty.