Allyson B. Baker

Venable LLP Former Enforcement Attorney at the CFPB

ALLYSON BAKER, who is a partner in Venable’s commercial litigation group, is a trial attorney and civil litigator with more than a decade of experience in the federal government and private practice. She focuses her practice on litigation involving consumer finance, financial fraud, and complex financial transactions and on law enforcement investigations involving financial institutions, especially those initiated by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the Department of Justice (DOJ). Immediately before joining Venable, Ms. Baker was an Enforcement Attorney at the CFPB where she served as lead counsel in In the Matter of Discover Bank, which was one of the first enforcement actions in agency history and resulted in one of the largest agency settlements to date. She was a member of the initial team of attorneys hired to stand up the CFPB’s Office of Enforcement. As part of this effort, she helped formulate policies on litigation and investigations. She also led an office working group that created, reviewed, and coordinated research projects involving the application and jurisdiction of the Dodd-Frank Act and group that coordinated the work of the Office of Enforcement and the CFPB’s Office of Fair Lending and Equal Opportunity. Before joining the CFPB, Ms. Baker was a Trial Attorney with the DOJ’s Civil Tax Division where she served as trial counsel in a number of jury and bench trials involving complex financial transactions, including Community First Credit Union v. United States, 2009 WL 1654497 (E.D. Wisc., May 8, 2009), a jury trial in which she defended the government’s position in a test case challenging an Internal Revenue Service determination about unrelated business income tax related to the sale of certain financial products; and in United States v. Stover, 731 F.Supp.2d 887 (W.D. Mo. 2010) and United States v. Davison, 2010 WL 1935951 (W.D. Mo., May 11, 2010), in which the government successfully obtained two injunctions against promoters of fraudulent tax structures that resulted in estimated tax harm of at least $500 million, for which Ms. Baker received a special commendation from IRS Chief Counsel. While at the Tax Division, she also received three Outstanding Attorney Awards. Prior to her time in the government, Ms. Baker was an associate in private practice and handled commercial litigation matters involving contract disputes, copyright infringement claims, and claims arising under the Lanham Act, Sherman Act, False Claims Act, and the civil rights laws. Since joining Venable in April 2013, Ms. Baker has represented Four Oaks Bank & Trust Company and its holding company, Four Oaks Fincorp, Inc. in a suit arising under the Financial Institutions Reform and Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA); this matter, which settled, was the first public enforcement action in “Operation Choke Point,” a DOJ-led law enforcement initiative. Ms. Baker is currently representing numerous consumer finance companies in confidential investigations initiated by the CFPB’s Office of Enforcement. She also routinely serves as litigation counsel for financial services companies, advises these companies about all aspects of the consumer financial laws and about their dealings with the CFPB. Ms. Baker received her BA from Columbia University and her JD, cum laude, from New York University School of Law.