Nacha issues ACH reminder to FIs potentially impacted by coronavirus

March 11, 2020

Nacha issued an Operations Bulletin this week reminding financial institutions of the importance of reviewing their business continuity plans to ensure that they are prepared to maintain ACH payment processing capabilities in the event of possible disruptions.

In addition to their own business continuity plans, Nacha notes financial institutions should understand the expectations of their regulators and ACH Operators with regard to ACH processing in potential scenarios of workforce disruption.

Nacha Operating Rules permit a financial institution to delay performance of its obligations under the Rules beyond required time limits if:

  • The delay was caused by the interruption of communication or computer facilities; and,
  • The delay was beyond the reasonable control of the financial institution seeking the excused delay.

Whether a delay is beyond the reasonable control of the party asserting an excused delay must be determined based on the available facts and circumstances surrounding the delay, including whether the financial institution exercised the level of diligence required under such circumstances.

According to Nacha, a delay caused, in whole or in part, by the failure of a financial institution to maintain or implement an appropriate business continuity plan is not excused under the Rules for that financial institution.