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Joe Reilly focuses his practice on residential mortgage origination and servicing, including default and loss mitigation, and other consumer finance matters. As a Partner in Buckley Sandler’s Washington, DC office, he advises a wide range of clients on consumer finance matters before the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and other federal and state regulators, in both the examination and enforcement context. Mr. Reilly’s work includes frequent counseling and advocacy on the entire panoply of new (Dodd-Frank Act-mandated) CFPB mortgage and other rules, as well as Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts or ractices (UDAAP), mortgage insurance law, fair and responsible lending and servicing, preemption, disclosures, contract terms, and fee authorization.

Mr. Reilly authored The New CFPB Mortgage Origination Rules Deskbook, the seminal treatise on the regulations governing the mortgage origination industry issued under the Dodd-Frank Act. Published by the American Bankers Association (ABA) but applicable to the great number of non-bank originators as well, the CFPB Deskbook quickly became the ABA’s most downloaded publication ever. The treatise consolidates all the diverse sources of regulatory law and agency guidance into a “one-stop shop” for all Dodd-Frank Title XIV mortgage origination rules, including those on Ability to Repay & Qualified Mortgages, Points & Fees, and Loan-Originator Compensation. A second edition of the treatise with expanded topics, including the new Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) Rule, will be published in February 2017.

In advising clients, Mr. Reilly also draws on his extensive general enforcement and litigation background. This experience informs his advice not only on enforcement matters specific to consumer finance, but also on important issues such as how a court could view a question or dispute, as well as the protection of privileges, work product, confidential supervisory information, and associated waiver risks. His previous general enforcement and litigation practice included defending clients in enforcement proceedings brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Department of Justice (DOJ), and other regulators. In private civil matters (including class actions), he formerly asserted or defended claims in many legal fields, including several billion-dollar-plus cases involving D&O fiduciary duties, securities, antitrust, civil Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), and breach of contract.

Representative consumer finance matters include:

  • Representation of two top 10 banks and numerous other financial institutions in preparing for and responding to CFPB examinations, including the preparation of written responses to CFPB questions
  • Advice to non-banks and banks on the CFPB’s loan originator compensation and “ability to repay / Qualified Mortgage” rules
  • Advice to a top five bank and many other servicers on preparing to implement the CFPB’s mortgage servicing rules
  • Representation of a top 10 bank in the due diligence of an acquisition target’s mortgage origination and servicing operations
  • Advice on the federal preemption of state consumer credit laws
  • RESPA compliance advice to numerous settlement services providers
  • Representation of two large national banks in connection with Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and attorney general investigations into alleged “robo-signing” and other defects in the foreclosure process

Mr. Reilly is Senior Vice Chair of the Truth-in-Lending Subcommittee of the American Bar Association’s Committee on Consumer Financial Services. He also is a member of the Banking Law Committee.

Prior to joining Buckley Sandler, Mr. Reilly was a Special Counsel at Sullivan & Cromwell, and before entering private law practice, Mr. Reilly was an investment banker at Credit Suisse First Boston. 

Clerkships: Mr. Reilly clerked on the Second Circuit for Judge Dennis Jacobs and separately clerked for federal district judge (now Second Circuit judge) Reena Raggi.

Congressional Experience: For over four years, Mr. Reilly served in several committee staff positions in the U.S. House and Senate, including as Chief Investigator for the House Financial Services Committee’s Democratic Staff, supervising that committee’s investigation of the “Whitewater” matter. He previously oversaw fair lending, consumer protection, and Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) matters for that staff.

Military Service: After completing U.S. Army ROTC at Stanford, Airborne School, Officer Basic Course (and later the Advanced Course), Mr. Reilly served as an Army Reserve Officer (a part-time position) in the 450th Civil Affairs Battalion (Airborne) for over four years.

Education: Mr. Reilly received his J.D. from the University of Virginia (Top 2%; Law Review), and his A.B. from Stanford University (Quantitative Economics and Public Policy).  

Webcasts & Speaking Engagements

In The News

Articles & Special Alerts


  • J.D., University of Virginia (Top 2%; Law Review)
  • A.B., Stanford University (Quantitative Economics and Public Policy)


  • District of Columbia
  • New York
  • U.S. District Court, District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court

Government Service

  • Chief Investigator for the House Financial Services Committee’s Democratic Staff

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