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Financial Services Law Insights and Observations

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  • Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions issues emergency guidance on remote notarization

    State Issues

    On March 18, the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) issued emergency guidance authorizing remote online notarization in response to the Covid-19 crisis. Remote online notarizations must be performed using technology providers that are regulated under standards that meet or exceed the state safeguards.  The DFI has approved four remote online notarization providers thus far, two each for remote notary services to the general public, and for title companies and other real-estate transactions.

    State Issues Covid-19 Wisconsin Notary Fintech

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  • Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions issues temporary relief for registrants

    State Issues

    On March 20, the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) issued an emergency order granting temporary relief to registrants affected by the Covid-19 outbreak. The order offers relief from: (i) registration and filing requirements for professionals required to be registered with the division; (ii) the requirement to obtain physical signatures on the U4 form (Uniform Application for Securities Industry Registration or Transfer); and (iii) annual update filings and document delivery requirements by state-registered investment advisers.

    Financial professionals who rely on and provision of the emergency order must keep a copy of the order in their records to demonstrate their reliance on it. This no-action relief will remain in effect until May 30, 2020, unless extended or rescinded.

    State Issues Covid-19 Wisconsin

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  • Wisconsin DFI provides Covid-19 guidance

    State Issues

    In March, the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions, Division of Banking (Division) issued guidance to state licensed mortgage loan originators (MLO) regarding working from a location that is not licensed or registered in light of Covid-19. Effective immediately, the Division will allow MLOs to work from home provided they comply with a number of provisions, including (i) the sponsoring licensed entity must notify the Division which MLOs will be working from home and keep a list of all such MLOs to be available upon request; (ii) the MLO may not maintain physical business records at home; and (iii) MLOs may not conduct business with consumers at the home location. Additional resources for financial services companies regarding Covid-19 may be found at the Department of Financial Institutions webpage here.

    State Issues Wisconsin Licensing Mortgages Loan Origination Covid-19

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  • Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions issues guidance to payday lenders

    State Issues

    On March 18, the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) announced the issuance of emergency guidance on character and fitness requirements for all payday and licensed lenders doing business in Wisconsin. The DFI cautions payday and licensed lenders that increasing interest rates, fees, or any costs of borrowing in response to the Covid-19 crisis may result in license suspension or revocation. The emergency guidance also encourages the reduction of rates and fees “as low as operational expenses and sound lending practices allow.”

    State Issues Licensing Payday Lending Covid-19 Wisconsin

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  • Wisconsin Dept. of Financial Institutions issues Covid-19 guidance; allows MLOs to work from home

    State Issues

    The Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions, Division of Banking published a website providing regulated entities with Covid-19 information and resources. The Division also noted that it will take a no-action position concerning a licensed mortgage loan originator working from a location that is not the licensed or registered office or branch office upon compliance with certain criteria.

    State Issues Mortgages Licensing Loan Origination Covid-19 Wisconsin

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