Regulatory & Legal Affairs

Overview

Legal and Regulatory Advocacy
Following new laws and regulations

New laws and regulations are constantly being proposed for the banking industry, both in Washington, D.C. and Sacramento. As well-intended as some of these proposals are, many of them contain language that conflicts with current law or conflicts with current regulatory requirements. Decision-makers need to better understand how their proposals translate into the real-world workings of California’s financial institutions, which is where our legal and regulatory advocacy unit is intrinsically valuable.

Our legal and regulatory advocacy unit works to identify potential legal and regulatory conflicts, make those conflicts known and secure a reasonable solution for the industry. CBA’s legal and regulatory advocacy unit works closely with bank regulators and elected officials alike to ensure that the banking industry’s perspective is known, understood and considered in the decision-making process.

In addition to the work done on the legislative and regulatory fronts, CBA’s legal and regulatory advocacy unit also gives a voice to the banking industry in important legal matters affecting the banking industry. Among the many legal services CBA provides on behalf of the industry is the filing of amicus, or “friend of the court,” briefs on legal proceedings critical to the industry. Through the filing of these briefs, CBA is able to provide the industry’s perspective without signing on as a participant in a given case or lawsuit. Our members understand that we are providing end-to-end advocacy services through our legal and regulatory advocacy unit, affecting both policy decisions and key court decisions that affect our members’ ability to do business.

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2010 CBA Regulatory and Litigation Summary
Leland Chan, CBA General Counsel

2010 will be remembered as the year that Congress enacted the single most significant piece of banking legislation since the Great Depression. By one count, the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act directs the issuance of 243 new regulations, many by the newly established Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection. The new independent agency will have primary jurisdiction over banks with over $10 billion in assets with respect to a myriad of consumer protection laws and regulations.

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FDIC Responds to State Banking Association’s Concerns Regarding Regulatory Examinations

In a letter dated May 21, 2010, FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair responded to a letter sent by the Florida Banks Association, which outlined their concerns with the bank supervision process. In the letter, Chairman Bair states that “there has been no change in our process for evaluating capital adequacy, and regulatory minimums remain in force. However, as we have done in the past, individual institutions with asset quality or earnings weaknesses frequently need to hold higher capital levels because of safety-and-soundness considerations.

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2009 CBA Regulatory and Litigation Summary
Leland Chan, CBA General Counsel

As expected, 2009 saw a flood of initiatives at all levels of government to address the financial crisis. Thanks to the CBA state government relations team, only one major banking bill was enacted in the state this year—AB 7, the foreclosure moratorium bill. And in response to frenetic activity in Congress, by the Administration, and the federal banking agencies, opposition mounted on major reform efforts, including the creation of a federal consumer agency, establishing a resolution authority for economically significant institutions, and consolidation of bank charters. As of the beginning of 2010, none of these proposals has yet been enacted.