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Rhode Island amends licensing provisions relating to remote working
On June 29, the Rhode Island governor signed SB 2794 into law, which amends licensing provisions related to remote employees, locations, and supervision. The bill adds definitions, eliminates certain requirements for licensees, and adds business operation guidance. Specifically, the bill, among other things, permits employees of a licensee to perform services for the licensee or act as a mortgage loan originator from a remote location, so long as certain requirements are met, which includes, among other things, that: (i) the employee is subject to the supervision of the licensee; (ii) the licensee has written policies and procedures for supervision of, and employs appropriate risk-based monitoring and oversight process of work performed by, employees working from remote locations; (iii) access to the licensee's computer platforms and to customer information is in accordance with the licensee's comprehensive written information security plan; (iv) no in-person customer interaction occurs at a remote location; and (v) physical records related to the licensee's business, including consumer information, are not maintained at the remote location. The bill also establishes that a remote location shall not be considered a branch of the licensee; however, activities conducted at a remote location shall be subject to examination. The bill is effective immediately.
Rhode Island extends its work from home provisions for lenders
On December 22, 2020, the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation extended interim guidance permitting mortgage loan originators, lenders, loan brokers, and exempt company registrants to work from home, even if the home is not a “licensed branch” or located outside of Rhode Island (previously covered here, here, and here.) To take advantage of this exemption, the individual must maintain certain specified data security provisions. This extension is set to expire March 31, 2021.
Rhode Island Division of Banking issues guidance on workplace practices to mitigate spread of Covid-19
On November 6, the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation, Division of Banking issued Banking Bulletin 2020-6 announcing certain standards for personnel and office operations that it encourages financial institutions to implement to mitigate further spread of Covid-19. These standards include, among others, guidelines for employee mask-wearing and congregation, and arrangement of office furniture to encourage social distancing.
Rhode Island regulator extends work from home guidance for lenders
On September 28, the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation, Banking Division, extended previous guidance (previously covered here and here) issued to mortgage loan originators, lenders, loan brokers, and exempt company registrants. The guidance permits working from home, even if the home is located outside of Rhode Island or is not a licensed branch, so long as specified data security provisions are met. The department extended this guidance until December 31, 2020.
Rhode Island courts to recommence eviction proceedings on June 2, 2020
On May 20, State of Rhode Island District Court issued Administrative Order 2020-02, announcing that it would recommence adjudicating eviction matters on June 2, and detailing a set of temporary practices and protocols for eviction matters. Similarly, on May 19, the State of Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation issued Certified Constables Bulletin 2020-1.2, noting that certified constables should conduct service of process and executions regarding eviction at a time and in a manner specified by the court.
Rhode Island extends Covid-19 executive orders
On May 6, the governor of Rhode Island extended multiple executive orders related to the Covid-19 pandemic until June 5, 2020. These include, among others, orders related to quarantines, remote corporate and shareholder meetings, and unemployment insurance.
Rhode Island attorney general: CARES Act recovery rebates exempt from seizure
On April 28, the attorney general of Rhode Island issued guidance to financial institutions, credit unions, creditors and debt collectors announcing that, in the attorney general’s view, all CARES Act recovery rebates are exempt from attachment and execution under Rhode Island law. The attorney general also warned that if a creditor attempts to attach a CARES Act recovery rebate, the attorney general’s office may bring a civil action or seek injunctive relief.
Rhode Island regulator extends guidance for lenders
On April 28, the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation, Banking Division, amended previous guidance (previously covered here) issued to mortgage loan originators, lenders, loan brokers and exempt company registrants. The previous guidance permitted working at home, even if the home is located outside of Rhode Island or is not a licensed branch. The department extended this guidance until June 30, 2020.
Rhode Island clarifies timing requirements for foreclosure mediation notices with CARES Act forbearances
On April 15, Rhode Island’s Superintendent of Banking issued a bulletin to clarify how mortgagors should implement CARES Act forbearances to accord with the state’s foreclosure mediation statute, which requires certain notices be mailed within 120 days of default. During the pendency of the Covid-19 pandemic, mortgagors must mail the required notice within 120 days after the termination of the forbearance agreement, subject to certain conditions.
Rhode Island governor issues executive order on shareholder meetings
On April 10, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo issued an executive order mandating that all shareholder annual and special meetings must be held remotely due to the Covid-19 crisis. The order will remain in effect until May 8, unless renewed, modified, or rescinded.