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On May 6, the director of Michigan’s Department of Insurance and Financial Services issued Bulletin 2020-23-BT/CF/CU to provide guidance to the financial services industry on compliance with the governor’s stay at home orders. The bulletin reiterates that work by the financial services sector should be done remotely to the fullest extent possible and businesses should take other mitigating measures for non-remote workers. It also clarifies that workers in the real estate industry, as opposed to mortgage companies, are not critical infrastructure workers, and should refer to guidance by the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.
On May 6, the Federal Reserve issued guidance to state member banks regarding flood insurance compliance in response to Covid-19. The guidance responds to a question regarding the extension of maturities/payments or balloon payments due to Covid-19 as well as a question about the impact of FEMA Bulletin W-20002 on force placement requirements under the Flood Disaster Protection Act and the implementing regulation.
Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation issues guidance to credit unions regarding deferral of an appraisal or written estimate of market value
On May 1, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation issued guidance to credit unions regarding the deferral of an appraisal or written estimate of market value to allow credit unions to continue to extend loans to households and businesses during the Covid-19 crisis. The guidance notes that the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Board promulgated an interim final rule allowing a federal credit union to temporarily defer certain appraisals and written estimates of market value for up to 120 days after closing when other alternatives are not available and when the appraisal or evaluation would delay the closing of the transaction, and states its intention to promulgate a substantially similar rule. Until the rule has been promulgated and finalized, the department does not intend to take adverse supervisory or enforcement action against an Illinois state-chartered credit union for deferring the appraisal or written estimate of market value for appropriate transactions up to 120 days from the date of closing, subject to certain exceptions. The guidance provides additional requirements for credit unions to follow when seeking to take advantage of this exemption.
On May 1, the OCC and the Federal Reserve Board issued a joint response to a public question about a capital implication under the market risk capital rule in light of current market conditions arising from the Covid-19 pandemic. The joint response notes that, in March and April of 2020, the agencies took supervisory action giving certain banks the option to apply the multiplication factor that applied as of December 31, 2019, rather than applying a higher multiplier based on the most recent exceptions.
On April 30, the governor of Illinois issued an executive order that continues a previous stay at home order. The order requires nonessential businesses activities and operations to cease, with limited exceptions, such as operating exclusively through employees working at their own residences. Essential businesses may remain open, but are required to evaluate whether employees can work from home, and are required to comply with social distancing and other health-related requirements while operating. A wide range of financial institutions and their affiliates are considered essential businesses. The order took effect on March 1.
On April 30, the National Credit Union Administration issued guidance describing strategies for working with negatively impacted borrowers while taking measures to limit the negative financial impact of those strategies on the credit union and its ability to serve all members. The guidance describes strategies for providing new funds to borrowers, temporary loan modifications, and permanent loan modifications. It also states that credit unions should maintain policies to manage the risks of workout strategies, including clearly defined eligibility criteria, aggregate program limits, and controls to ensure workout actions are structured appropriately.
Maryland regulator: Banks and credit unions should lift automated holds imposed on CARES Act recovery rebates
On April 30, the Maryland commissioner of financial regulation issued guidance to banks and credit unions in light of the April 29 executive order prohibiting garnishment or setoff of CARES Act recovery rebates. The guidance “strongly” urges Maryland-chartered depository institutions to “immediately” review their automated systems to ensure that they do not intercept, hold, or set-off against CARES Act recovery rebate payments made through direct deposit. The guidance also urges depository institutions to cash CARES Act recovery rebates issued as checks for customers and non-customers alike, and to do so without charging any fees to consumers. Any entity that seeks to engage in collection efforts against CARES Act rebate payments would be in violation of the Maryland Debt Collection Practices Act.
On April 29, the governor of Maryland issued an executive order prohibiting any garnishment or setoff of CARES Act recovery rebates. The order also provides that Maryland-incorporated banks and credit unions have no right of setoff or lien upon funds in a customer or member’s account that are traceable to a CARES Act recovery rebate.
On April 28, New York updated its guidance on Executive Order 202.6 relating to determining whether a business enterprise is subject to a workforce reduction under recent executive orders addressing Covid-19. The updated guidance provides that essential financial institutions include banks or lending institutions, insurance, payroll, accounting, and services related to financial markets, with the exception of debt collection services.
Massachusetts Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation issues guidance on reverse mortgages
On April 27, the Massachusetts Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation, Division of Banks, issued guidance relating to compliance with the reverse mortgage counseling requirements under An Act Providing for a Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures During the Covid-19 Emergency, which was signed into law and effective on April 20, 2020. The act provides that the in-person counseling requirement under specific provisions of Massachusetts law can alternatively be met by synchronous, real-time video conference or by telephone. The division also provides guidance for counseling options for reverse mortgage counseling, HUD Certificate of HECM counseling, and other reverse mortgage programs.
- Daniel R. Alonso to moderate an interactive roundtable at the Latin Lawyer and GIR Connect: Anti-Corruption & Investigations Conference
- APPROVED Checkpoint Webcast: You have license renewal questions, we have answers
- Jonice Gray Tucker to discuss “Fintech trends” at the BIHC Network Elevating Black Excellence Regional Summit
- Jeffrey P. Naimon to discuss "Truth in lending” at the American Bar Association National Institute on Consumer Financial Services Basics
- Daniel R. Alonso to discuss anti-money-laundering at FELABAN Spanish-language webinar “Perspective for banks: LAFT, FINCEN, OFAC, Cryptocurrency”
- Daniel R. Alonso to discuss "What’s new in BSA/AML compliance?" at the Institute of International Bankers Regulatory Compliance Seminar
- Marshall T. Bell and John R. Coleman to speak at 2021 AFSA Annual Meeting
- Jon David D. Langlois to discuss "Regulatory update: What you need to know under the new boss; It won’t be the same as the old boss" at the IMN Residential Mortgage Service Rights Forum (East)
- Daniel R. Alonso to discuss internal investigations at the Institute of Internal Auditors of Argentina Spanish-language webinar
- Benjamin B. Klubes to discuss “Creating a Fantastic Workplace Culture”
- John R. Coleman and Amanda R. Lawrence to discuss “Consumer financial services government enforcement actions – The CFPB and beyond” at the Government Investigations & Civil Litigation Institute Annual Meeting
- Jonice Gray Tucker to discuss "Consumer financial services" at the Practising Law Institute Banking Law Institute
- Jonice Gray Tucker to discuss “Regulators always ring twice: Responding to a government request” at ALM Legalweek