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  • FDIC announces disaster relief for Puerto Rico

    Federal Issues

    On November 16, the FDIC issued FIL-105-2020 to provide regulatory relief to financial institutions and help facilitate recovery in areas of Puerto Rico affected by severe storms and flooding starting on September 13. The guidance notes that the FDIC will consider the unusual circumstances faced by institutions affected by the hurricane. The guidance suggests that institutions work with impacted borrowers to, among other things: (i) extend repayment terms; (ii) restructure existing loans; or (iii) ease terms for new loans to those affected by the severe weather, provided the measures are “done in a manner consistent with sound banking practices.” Additionally, the FDIC notes that institutions may receive Community Reinvestment Act consideration for community development loans, investments, and services in support of disaster recovery. The FDIC states it will also consider relief from certain reporting and publishing requirements.

    Federal Issues Disaster Relief FDIC

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  • OCC says banks affected by Hurricane Zeta may close

    Federal Issues

    On October 27, the OCC issued a proclamation permitting OCC-regulated institutions, at their discretion, to close offices affected by Hurricane Zeta “for as long as deemed necessary for bank operation or public safety.” The proclamation directs institutions to OCC Bulletin 2012-28 for further guidance on actions they should take in response to natural disasters and other emergency conditions. According to the 2012 Bulletin, only bank offices directly affected by potentially unsafe conditions should close and institutions should make every effort to reopen as quickly as possible to address customers’ banking needs.

    Find continuing InfoBytes coverage on disaster relief here.

    Federal Issues OCC Disaster Relief

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  • FDIC announces hurricane and wildfire relief

    Federal Issues

    On October 23, the FDIC issued FIL-100-2020 and FIL-101-2020 to provide regulatory relief to financial institutions and help facilitate recovery in areas of Louisiana and California. Specifically, FIL-100-2020 outlines relief for areas of Louisiana affected by Hurricane Delta from October 6 through October 10, and FIL-101-2020 provides relief for areas of California affected by wildfires since September 4 .

    The guidance notes that the FDIC will consider the unusual circumstances faced by institutions affected by the hurricane and wildfires. The guidance suggests that institutions work with impacted borrowers to, among other things: (i) extend repayment terms; (ii) restructure existing loans; or (iii) ease terms for new loans to those affected by the severe weather, provided the measures are “done in a manner consistent with sound banking practices.” Additionally, the FDIC notes that institutions may receive favorable Community Reinvestment Act consideration for community development loans, investments, and services in support of disaster recovery. The FDIC states it will also consider relief from certain reporting and publishing requirements.

    Federal Issues FDIC Disaster Relief

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  • OCC, FDIC announce disaster relief guidance

    Federal Issues

    On October 9, the FDIC issued FIL-96-2020 to provide regulatory relief to financial institutions and, starting on September 14, help facilitate recovery in areas of Florida affected by Hurricane Sally. The guidance notes that the FDIC will consider the unusual circumstances faced by institutions affected by the hurricane. The guidance suggests that institutions work with impacted borrowers to, among other things: (i) extend repayment terms; (ii) restructure existing loans; or (iii) ease terms for new loans to those affected by the severe weather, provided the measures are “done in a manner consistent with sound banking practices.” Additionally, the FDIC notes that institutions may receive Community Reinvestment Act consideration for community development loans, investments, and services in support of disaster recovery. The FDIC states it will also consider relief from certain reporting and publishing requirements.

    Additionally, on October 8, the OCC issued a proclamation permitting OCC-regulated institutions, at their discretion, to close offices affected by Hurricane Delta “for as long as deemed necessary for bank operation or public safety.” The proclamation directs institutions to OCC Bulletin 2012-28 for further guidance on actions they should take in response to natural disasters and other emergency conditions. According to the 2012 Bulletin, only bank offices directly affected by potentially unsafe conditions should close, and institutions should make every effort to reopen as quickly as possible to address customers’ banking needs.

    Find continuing InfoBytes coverage on disaster relief here.

    Federal Issues OCC Disaster Relief FDIC

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  • FinCEN extends FBAR filing deadline for natural disaster victims

    Federal Issues

    On October 6, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issued a notice extending the deadline to December 31, 2020, for victims of certain recent natural disasters to file their reports of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR) for the 2019 calendar year. The expanded relief is offered to victims impacted by the California wildfires, Iowa Derecho, Hurricane Laura, Oregon wildfires, and Hurricane Sally. If FEMA later designates additional areas as eligible for individual assistance, FBAR filers in those locations will automatically receive the same filing relief. FinCEN will also work with FBAR filers who live outside the designated disaster areas but may have trouble meeting their filing obligations because their records are located in the affected areas.

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  • FDIC announces disaster relief in connection with Hurricane Sally

    Federal Issues

    On September 23, the FDIC issued FIL-92-2020 to provide regulatory relief to financial institutions and help facilitate recovery in areas of Alabama affected by Hurricane Sally starting on September 14. In the guidance, the FDIC notes that, in supervising institutions affected by the hurricane, the FDIC will consider the unusual circumstances those institutions face. The guidance suggests that institutions work with impacted borrowers to, among other things, (i) extend repayment terms; (ii) restructure existing loans; or (iii) ease terms for new loans to those affected by the severe weather, provided the measures are “done in a manner consistent with sound banking practices.” Additionally, the FDIC notes that institutions may receive Community Reinvestment Act consideration for community development loans, investments, and services in support of disaster recovery. The FDIC states it will also consider relief from certain reporting and publishing requirements.

    Federal Issues FDIC Mortgages Disaster Relief

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  • FDIC, HUD announce Oregon wildfires regulatory and disaster relief

    Federal Issues

    On September 18, the FDIC issued FIL-91-2020 to provide regulatory relief to financial institutions and help facilitate recovery in areas of Oregon affected by wildfires that began on September 7. In the guidance, the FDIC writes that, in supervising institutions affected by the wildfires, it will consider the unusual circumstances those institutions face. The guidance suggests that institutions work with impacted borrowers to, among other things, (i) extend repayment terms; (ii) restructure existing loans; or (iii) ease terms for new loans to those affected by the severe weather, provided the measures are “done in a manner consistent with sound banking practices.” Additionally, the FDIC notes that institutions may receive favorable Community Reinvestment Act consideration for community development loans, investments, and services in support of disaster recovery. The FDIC will also consider relief from certain reporting and publishing requirements.

    Separately, on September 17, HUD announced disaster assistance available to certain counties impacted by the Oregon wildfires, providing foreclosure relief and other assistance to affected homeowners. Specifically, HUD is providing an automatic 90-day moratorium on foreclosures of FHA-insured home mortgages for covered properties and is making FHA insurance available to those victims whose homes were destroyed or severely damaged. Additionally, HUD’s Section 203(k) loan program will allow individuals who have lost homes to finance the purchase of a house, or refinance an existing house and the costs of repair, through a single mortgage. The program will also allow homeowners with damaged property to finance the rehabilitation of existing single-family homes.

    Federal Issues HUD Mortgages Disaster Relief FHA FDIC

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  • OCC, FDIC announce disaster relief guidance

    Federal Issues

    On September 14, the OCC issued a proclamation permitting OCC-regulated institutions, at their discretion, to close offices affected by Hurricane Sally “for as long as deemed necessary for bank operation or public safety.” The proclamation directs institutions to OCC Bulletin 2012-28 for further guidance on actions they should take in response to natural disasters and other emergency conditions. According to the 2012 Bulletin, only bank offices directly affected by potentially unsafe conditions should close, and institutions should make every effort to reopen as quickly as possible to address customers’ banking needs. Earlier in the week, the OCC also issued a proclamation permitting OCC-regulated institutions, at their discretion, to close offices affected by wildfires in Oregon and Washington.

    Separately, on September 14, the FDIC issued FIL-89-2020 to provide regulatory relief to financial institutions and help facilitate recovery in areas of Puerto Rico affected by Tropical Storm Isaias. In the guidance, the FDIC notes that, in supervising institutions affected by the severe weather, the FDIC will consider the unusual circumstances those institutions face. The guidance suggests that institutions work with impacted borrowers to, among other things, (i) extend repayment terms; (ii) restructure existing loans; or (iii) ease terms for new loans to those affected by the severe weather, provided the measures are done “in a manner consistent with sound banking practices,” so the institutions can “contribute to the health of the local community and serve the long-term interests of the lending institution.” Additionally, the FDIC notes that institutions may receive Community Reinvestment Act consideration for community development loans, investments, and services that revitalize or stabilize designated disaster areas. The FDIC states, among other things, that it will also consider relief from certain filing and publishing requirements, and recommends institutions experiencing disaster-related compliance difficulties contact the New York Regional Office.

    Find continuing InfoBytes coverage on disaster relief here.

    Federal Issues OCC FDIC Consumer Finance Disaster Relief

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  • VA encourages mortgage relief after Hurricane Laura

    Federal Issues

    On September 4, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) issued Circular 26-20-34 to encourage mortgagees to provide relief for VA borrowers affected by Hurricane Laura. The Circular encourages loan holders and servicers to (i) extend forbearance to distressed borrowers and to members of the National Guard assisting in the recovery efforts; (ii) establish a 90-day moratorium on initiating new foreclosures; (iii) waive late charges; and (iv) suspend credit reporting on affected loans. The Circular will be rescinded October 1, 2021. Mortgage servicers and veteran borrowers are also encouraged to review the VA’s Guidance on Natural Disasters.

    Federal Issues Disaster Relief Department of Veterans Affairs Mortgages

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  • FHA issues underwriting guidelines on prior forbearances

    Federal Issues

    On September 10, FHA released Mortgagee Letter 2020-30, which discusses FHA’s underwriting guidelines for mortgages involving borrowers who were previously granted a forbearance. The letter notes that FHA is “expanding its underwriting guidelines” to address situations in which borrowers are seeking new FHA insured financing after being granted a forbearance, due to either a Presidentially Declared major disaster or some other hardship, including the Covid-19 pandemic. The letter specifies that a borrower will be eligible for a new FHA insured mortgage after being granted a forbearance if, among other things, (i) the borrower continued to make regularly scheduled payments and the forbearance plan is terminated; or (ii) for cash-out refinances, the borrower has completed the forbearance and has subsequently made 12 consecutive monthly payments; or (iii) for purchases and no cash-out refinances, the borrower has completed the forbearance and has subsequently made at least three consecutive monthly payments; or (iv) for “Credit Qualifying Streamline” refinances, the borrower has completed the forbearance and has subsequently made less than three consecutive monthly payments; and (v) for all “Streamline refinance” transactions, the borrower has made at least six payments on the FHA insured mortgage being refinanced.

    FHA requires the new underwriting guidelines be implemented for all case numbers assigned on or after November 9.

    Federal Issues Covid-19 FHA Disaster Relief Mortgages Refinance Forbearance

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