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Financial Services Law Insights and Observations

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  • California Department of Business Oversight issues guidance to finance lenders, PACE administrators, deferred deposit originators, and premium finance companies

    State Issues

    On April 3, the California Department of Business Oversight (DBO) issued guidance to finance lenders, Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) administrators, deferred deposit originators, and premium finance companies requesting such licensees work with their customers by offering payment plans and extensions at no additional cost to the customer. The DBO also requests that premium finance companies grant a grace period similar to the grace periods being granted by many insurance companies in order to prevent insureds from experiencing an interruption in insurance coverage.

    State Issues Covid-19 California DBO Deposits Licensing Insurance

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  • California secretary of state issues FAQs on notarizations, business entity filings

    State Issues

    The secretary of state issued FAQs summarizing the impact of Governor Newsome’s Shelter in Place order on notarizations and business filings.  The FAQs clarify that the Secretary of State’s Office remains operational, although it is only accepting business entity filings and notary oath filings by mail or electronically. The FAQs also provide that while California law does not permit California notaries to perform remote online notarizations, California citizens may utilize remote online notarization services provided by an out-of-state notary, if those services are performed in accordance with local state law. California citizens may also utilize the services of a “mobile notary,” that will travel to a customer’s location and perform notarizations.

    State Issues Covid-19 California Notary

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  • California chief justice extends statutory deadlines for hearings and trials

    State Issues

    On March 30, the chief justice of California issued an order that extended statutory deadlines for preliminary hearings, arraignments and certain civil and criminal trials. The order, which was issued under authority granted to the chief justice in Executive Order N-38-20, extends the time from which a defendant charged with a felony must be taken before a magistrate judge from two to seven days, extends the time period for holding preliminary examinations of such defendants from 10 to 30 days, and extends certain statutory deadlines for holding criminal and civil trials by 60 days.

    State Issues Covid-19 California

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  • California governor issues executive order halting enforcement of evictions

    State Issues

    On March 27, the California Governor issued an executive order halting the enforcement of eviction orders for renters affected by Covid-19 through May 31, 2020. The order prohibits landlords from evicting tenants for nonpayment of rent and prohibits enforcement of evictions. It also requires tenants to declare in writing, no more than seven days after the rent comes due, that the tenant cannot pay all or part of their rent due to Covid-19.

    State Issues Covid-19 California

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  • California Department of Real Estate cancels real estate salesperson broker license exams through April 30

    State Issues

    On March 26, the California Department of Real Estate announced that it is cancelling real estate salesperson broker license exams in all exam centers through April 30 in order to comply with state and local public health agencies ordering residents to shelter in place to slow the spread of Covid-19. Examinees will be allowed to reschedule their canceled exam dates using DRE’s eLicensing system and will not be charged rescheduling fees.

    State Issues Licensing Covid-19 California

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  • Connecticut governor extends administrative deadlines during Covid-19 pandemic

    State Issues

    On March 25, the governor of Connecticut issued an executive order suspending or extending numerous state administrative deadlines. The order authorizes the head of each administrative department, agency board or commission to suspend any statutory or regulatory time requirements or deadlines as they deem necessary to respond to the Covid-19 outbreak.

    State Issues California Covid-19

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  • California governor extends tax, licensing deadlines

    State Issues

    On March 25, the governor of California issued an executive order intended to provide relief to small businesses. The order provides businesses filing a return of less than $1 million in taxes with a 90-day extension to file first quarter returns and make tax payments. The order also extends by 60 days deadlines for submitting applications, paying fees, and submitting audited financial reports for a number of business licensees, including card rooms and online payer services. The order also suspends the requirements to request and receive the consent of shareholders for shareholder meetings to be held by electronic transmission or by electronic video screen communication.

    State Issues California Small Business Covid-19 Licensing

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  • California DBO issues guidance on securities and franchise filings

    State Issues

    On March 22, the California Department of Business Oversight issued notice urging securities and franchise filers to submit filings electronically and request waivers of automatic effectiveness for paper filings. The notice also provides that effective immediately the DBO will accept use of e-signature software in lieu of notarization and will waive the additional filing fee for renewals filed after franchise registration has lapsed through June 30.

    State Issues Covid-19 California DBO Securities

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  • California governor extends tax, licensing deadlines

    State Issues

    On March 25, the governor of California issued an executive order intended to provide relief to small businesses. The order provides businesses filing a return of less than $1 million in taxes with a 90-day extension to file first quarter returns and make tax payments. The order also extended by 60 days deadlines for submitting applications, paying fees, and submitting audited financial reports for a number of business licensees, including card rooms and online payer services.  The order also suspends the requirements to request and receive the consent of shareholders for shareholder meetings to be held by electronic transmission or by electronic video screen communication.

    State Issues Covid-19 California Licensing Shareholders

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  • California Department of Business Oversight issues guidance to financial institutions

    State Issues

    On March 22, the California Department of Business Oversight (DBO) issued guidance to financial institutions whose customers may be suffering from loss of income or other financial hardship as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. As directed by Governor Newsom’s Executive Order N-28-20 (previously discussed here), the DBO encourages financial institutions to adopt the following practices, among others, during the state of emergency:

    • Waiving certain fees (e.g., ATM fees, overdraft fees, late payment fees, early withdrawal penalties)
    • Increasing ATM daily cash withdrawal limits;
    • Easing restrictions on cashing out-of-state and non-customer checks;
    • Increasing credit card limits for creditworthy borrowers; and
    • Offering payment accommodations, such as allowing borrowers to defer or skip some payments or extending the payment due date, which would avoid delinquencies and negative credit bureau reporting caused by Covid-19-related disruptions.

    The guidance provides that prudent efforts to modify the terms on existing loans for affected customers will not be subject to examiner criticism. The guidance provides additional insight on financial condition review, supervisory response, and regulatory relief, regulatory reporting requirements, alternative service options for customers, and the permissibility of holding certain meetings (e.g., annual shareholder meetings, board of director meetings) via videoconference or teleconference.

    State Issues Covid-19 California DBO

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