NLRB Issues Notice Requirement
New requirement goes into effect Jan. 31, 2012.
NLRB Notice Requirement
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a final rule to require most private-sector employers (in-cluding credit unions) to notify employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The requirement goes into effect on Jan. 31, 2012.
Employers must post a notice in the workplace, similar to the one required by the Labor Department for federal contractors. But NLRB’s final rule would require just about all private sector employers subject to the NLRA to inform employees of their NLRA rights, regardless of federal contractor status. The NLRA excludes agricultural, and railroad and airline employees. The NLRB also exempts U.S. Postal Service workers from the requirements for now. But if you already comply with the Labor Department’s posting requirement, you’ll also comply with the NLRB rule.
Employers must post the notices “in conspicuous places where they’re readily seen by employees, including all places where notices to employees concerning personnel rules or policies are customarily posted.” NLRB also requires employers to post the notice on the Internet or an intranet site if that’s where employers customarily post personnel rules and policies. And if 20% or more of employees speak a language other than English, employers must include translated versions of the notices.
Find the NLRB notice at nlrb.gov and from the agency’s regional offices.
Savings Bonds Counter Sales Eliminated
The Treasury Department will end over-the-counter sales of paper savings bonds on Dec. 31, 2011. This includes sales through financial institutions. Members still may purchase savings bonds at treasurydirect.gov.
According to Treasury, this change will save
taxpayers an estimated $70 million during the next five years.
Existing paper savings bonds still will be valid and earn interest for 30 years from the issue date or until re-deemed. Members can still redeem paper bonds at the credit unions that remain paying agents in Treasury’s sav-ings bond program. Members also can convert their paper savings bonds to electronic bonds at treasury direct.gov using a program called “SmartExchange.” There’s no charge to convert paper bonds. No earned interest will be lost, and the bonds will keep their original issue dates and current interest- rate terms.
Treasury offers a tool kit for credit unions to inform members about the changes. It’s available for download at treasurydirect.gov. The kit includes a sample newsletter article, a Q&A for member service staff, monthly statement messages, a lobby flier, and Web banners.
SAFE Act Registration Renewals
The Secure and Fair Enforcement for Mortgage Licensing Act (SAFE Act) requires registered mortgage loan originators to renew their registration on the National Mortgage Licensing System & Registry (NMLS) during the annual “renewal period” (November 1 to December 31).
Renewal won’t be required if initial MLO registrations occurred less than six months before the end of the re-newal period. But credit unions will have to update registrations if information initially submitted to the NMLS changed.
All initial MLO registrations completed before July 1, 2011, must be renewed by the end of 2011 as well as subsequent years. Initial registrations completed on or after July 1 aren’t required to be renewed by year’s end, but must be renewed in subsequent years. All institution accounts must be renewed on an annual basis regardless of when the NMLS account was created.
For more information on the SAFE Act, visit CUNA’s e-Guide at cuna.org.
Next: Mandatory E-Filing of BSA Reports Proposed
Mandatory E-Filing of BSA Reports Proposed
The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) proposes mandatory electronic filing (or e-filing) of Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) reports, including the Currency Transaction Report (CTR) and Suspicious Activity Report (SAR), effective June 30, 2012. The proposal doesn’t include the Currency and Monetary Instrument Report (CMIR), most often completed by individuals upon physically crossing the border into the U.S.
Comments are due to FinCEN by Nov. 15, 2011.
FinCEN’s “BSA E-Filing” is a free, Web-based electronic filing system. E-filing of certain FinCEN reports first became available in 2002. Since then, FinCEN has been building capacity and encouraging the use of e-filing to save time, money, and effort for both filers and users of the FinCEN data. Currently, about 85% of FinCEN reports are filed electronically.
Training Calendar 2011
- Nov. 9: Safe Deposit Box Fundamentals webinar
- Nov. 10: Mortgage Lending Updates webinar
- Nov. 17: Compliance Research and Resources webinar
- Nov. 22 & 29: Deposit Account Regulations: Parts 1 & 2 webinar
- Dec. 6 & 13: General Operations Regulations: Parts 1 & 2 webinar
- Dec. 14: Pressing Credit Union Compliance Issues audio conference
Visit cuna.org/training-education for program and registration details.
Q Does the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) or the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) require a credit union to provide adverse action notices to co-signers/guarantors?
A No. Only a credit “applicant” can experience “adverse action” (e.g., a loan denial) under ECOA and Regulation B, and a co-signer/guarantor doesn’t meet the definition of an applicant. FCRA tracks Reg B’s definition of adverse action in the context of a credit application. So, a guarantor or co-signer wouldn’t need to receive an adverse action notice under FCRA either.
Q Does Reg B prohibit a credit union from maintaining a photocopy of a member’s driver’s license in the loan file?
A No. Some state laws may prohibit “reproducing,” “duplicating,” or “photocopying” state-issued IDs. But there’s no explicit restriction in Reg B regarding keeping a photocopy of a member’s photo ID in the loan file. The presence of this information in the loan file could lead to a presumption that the credit union is improperly taking members’ personal characteristics (race, nationality, gender) into account when making loan decisions. That’s why examiners “recommend” keeping a photocopied ID in a file other than a loan file.
Q Must all account owners opt-in to the credit union’s overdraft program for ATM and one-time debit card transactions under Regulation E?
A No. If two or more members jointly hold an account, the credit union must treat the affirmative consent (i.e., opt-in) of any of the joint owners as affirmative consent for that account. Similarly, the credit union must treat a revocation of the opt-in by any joint owners as revocation of the consent for that account.
Visit CUNA’s compliance blog—“CompBlog”—at cuna.org. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or ideas for blog posts, and keep the conversation going with your peers on COBWEB, CUNA’s compliance listserv.