Bankers faced with fair-lending lawsuits have a new reference to use when planning their defenses.

The American Bankers Association this month issued a study intended for lawyers that analyzes how the Justice Department can use the Fair Housing Act, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, and the Community Reinvestment Act against banks.

The Washington office of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, which represented Chevy Chase Federal Savings Bank in its fair-lending fight with Justice, wrote the report.

"It is an attempt to say what the law is today," Skadden Arps partner William Sweet said.

The ABA, which financed the study, will make it available free to all members. Officials declined to disclose the cost of the report.

To get a copy or for more informations, call 800-338-0626.

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