Guidance issued to FIs working in Oklahoma areas affected by severe storms, tornadoes

CRA credit for assistance given, relief from some reg requirements possible

Guidance for federally insured banks and thrifts operating in areas of Oklahoma affected by severe winter storms, straight-line winds, and tornadoes beginning in early May was issued Monday in a Financial Institution Letter (FIL) from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC).

In FIL-30-2019, the FDIC notes that a federal disaster for selected areas in Oklahoma – Muskogee, Tulsa, and Wagoner counties – was declared on June 2 and that additional designations may be made after damage assessments are completed.

The FDIC is encouraging banks to work constructively with borrowers experiencing difficulties beyond their control because of damage caused by the severe weather. It says banks may receive favorable Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) consideration for community development loans, investments, and services in support of disaster recovery. The agency will consider regulatory relief from certain filing and publishing requirements, it says.

Below are details from FIL-30-2019 on that relief and more:

  • Reporting Requirements: FDIC-supervised institutions affected by the severe weather should notify the Dallas Regional Office if they expect a delay in filing Reports of Income and Condition or other reports. The FDIC will evaluate any causes beyond the control of a reporting institution when considering the length of an acceptable delay.
  • Publishing Requirements: Banks experiencing disaster-related difficulties in complying with any publishing or other requirements (such as for branch closings, relocations, and temporary facilities) should contact the Dallas Regional Office.
  • Consumer Laws: For consumers’ principal dwelling-secured loans, Regulation Z provides consumers an option to waive or modify the three-day rescission period when a “bona fide personal financial emergency” exists. To exercise this option, the consumer must provide the lender with a statement describing the emergency in accordance with the regulation.
  • Temporary Banking Facilities: The Dallas Regional Office will expedite any request to operate temporary banking facilities by an institution whose offices have been damaged or that desires to provide more convenient availability of services to those affected by severe weather. In most cases, a telephone notice to the FDIC will suffice initially. Necessary written notification can be submitted later.