April 21, 2020

The RESPONSE: Federal and State Actions Affecting the Financial Services Industry - Edition 10

Holland & Knight Alert
Holland & Knight's Financial Services Industry Group

Like our clients, Holland & Knight's Financial Services Industry Group is committed to actively contributing to our nation's response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and related economic fallout and recovery efforts. For our part, Holland & Knight's 300-plus lawyers and professionals who comprise our Financial Services Industry Group want to ensure that bank and non-bank financial institutions, financial intermediaries and other financial services industry participants and stakeholders have access to timely, accurate and succinct updates on federal and state legislative, regulatory and administrative responses to the COVID-19 pandemic that are most relevant to our financial services clients.

To that end, we are pleased to share with you the latest edition of The RESPONSE.

Federal Reserve Changes PPP Rules to Allow Loans to Director/Shareholder-Owned Businesses

The Federal Reserve has temporarily modified its rules to allow lenders to make Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans to businesses owned by lender directors or shareholders, subject to limits and without favoritism.

OCC Promotes Awareness of Federal Reserve COVID-19 Programs

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has published Bulletin 2020-41 to alert national banks to the various facilities and programs established by the Federal Reserve to help the delivery of critical services in response to the COVID-19 emergency. The OCC highlights the PPP Liquidity Facility, the Main Street Lending Facility, the expanded Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility, the Municipal Liquidity Facility, and the Primary Market and Secondary Market Corporate Credit Facilities.

CFPB Advisory Committees COVID-19 Conference Call Open to Public

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has announced that the Consumer Advisory Board, Community Bank Advisory Council, Credit Union Advisory Council and Academic Research Council will hold a joint meeting via conference call on May 1, 2020, from 2 p.m. to 4:15 p.m. EDT. The call will be open to the public and will focus on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on consumers. To listen to the meeting, registration must be completed by noon on April 30, 2020.

NCUA Board Approves Rules Providing Relief in Response to COVID-19

The board of the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) has approved three rules in response to the COVID-19 crisis. The NCUA has approved 1) a temporary final rule providing regulatory relief to federally insured credit unions aimed helping such institutions remain operational and liquid, 2) an interim final rule deferring certain appraisals and evaluations for up to 120 days, and 3) a final rule increasing the threshold level at which an appraisal is required for residential real estate-related transactions to $400,000.

Florida Temporarily Extends Vehicle Retail Installment Payment Period

The Florida Office of Financial Regulation has issued an emergency order to temporarily allow scheduling the first payment on a retail installment sales contract up to 90 days from the date of the loan. Current law requires scheduling the first payment within 45 days from the date of the loan.

Massachusetts Announces Small Business Relief Partnership Grant Program

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey has announced the Small Business Relief Partnership Grant Program that will provide funding to municipalities and regional planning agencies, which will in turn provide grant funds to help small businesses pay "fixed debt, payroll, accounts payable, lost sales, lost opportunities, and other working capital expenses" incurred by the COVID-19 pandemic.

New York-Chartered Financial Institutions Given Relief Related to Required Meetings

The New York Department of Financial Services published an order allowing financial institutions to 1) conduct required meetings virtually during the disaster emergency and for 60 days thereafter, and 2) to extend timing requirements for stockholder meetings to within seven months (rather than four months) of an entity's fiscal year end in cases where the original deadline for the stockholder meeting falls during the disaster emergency.

Pennsylvania Authorizes Certain Remote Online Notarizations

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf signed SB-841 (the Act) into law on April 20, 2020, Subchapter D of which immediately authorizes Pennsylvania-licensed notaries to conduct remote online notarizations (RONs) under certain conditions. By enacting the Act, Pennsylvania joins 43 other states that have extended such authority – temporarily or permanently, by statute or emergency/executive order – to their notaries. However, the authority provided by the Act is only temporary, expiring 60 days after termination or expiration of Gov. Wolf's COVID-19 disaster emergency declaration.

For questions, comments or additional information on any of these areas, please reach out to the Holland & Knight professional with whom you work or one of the following contacts in our Financial Services Industry Group.

About Our Financial Services Industry Group:

Participants in the financial services industry require sophisticated legal counsel to navigate a complex, ever-changing environment and respond to opportunities and challenges as they arise. With more than 300 members throughout the firm, Holland & Knight's Financial Services Industry Group has the depth and experience to effectively serve borrowers and lenders in all of their legal matters, including corporate services, international operations, labor and employment, litigation and dispute resolution, public policy and regulation, real estate and white collar defense. The combination of our thorough knowledge and a sincere commitment to provide responsive service is why clients entrust our team to handle their legal needs.

Holland & Knight has established a COVID-19 Response Team to help clients respond to a variety of business and legal issues they may be facing in this crisis. Please visit Holland & Knight's website for the latest COVID-19 news and updates important to your business.

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