Agencies propose to formalize rules allowing electronic means for admin proceedings

Updates intended to modernize policies and procedures for administrative proceedings at bank and credit union regulators were proposed Tuesday by the agencies.

Specifically, the agencies said the proposal was intended to align the rules with “with current practices and facilitating the use of electronic communications and technology in administrative proceedings.” The proposal would recognize use of electronic communications “in all aspects of administrative hearings and to otherwise increase the efficiency and fairness of administrative adjudications,” according to the agencies.

Essentially, the proposal – issued by the Federal Reserve, Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), and the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) – would recognize electronic pleadings and communications in administrative hearings and other sections that require modification based on the experience of the agencies in administrative litigation.

In the proposal, the agencies noted that without rules in place to address electronic pleadings, federal administrative law judges (ALJs) “opted to dictate procedures pertaining to electronic filing and other items on an ad hoc basis in their scheduling orders.”

In addition, the three banking agencies also proposed to modify their “local rules” of administrative practice and procedure. And the OCC proposed additionally to integrate its uniform rules and local rules so that “one set of rules applies to both national banks and Federal savings associations” and to amend its rules on organization and functions to address service of process.

Comments on the proposal will be due in 60 days.

Federal Reserve Board invites comment on interagency proposal to update policies and procedures governing administrative proceedings for supervised financial institutions