MetLife Inc. sued the U.S. government over a panel's decision to label it critical to the economy, arguing that imposing higher regulatory standards will drive up the cost of financial protection for consumers.

The label would subject the company to more oversight, even though insurers already fall under a comprehensive state-level "regime that supervises every aspect of MetLife's U.S. insurance business," its lawyer Eugene Scalia wrote in a complaint filed today in Washington

The U.S. Financial Stability Oversight Council relied on "vague standards and assertions, unsubstantiated speculation and unreasonable assumptions" in tagging MetLife with the SIFI label and denied the company an opportunity for rebuttal in violation of its due process rights, according to the complaint.

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