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Friday, May 23, 2014

OCC to Integrate Licensing Rules for National Banks, Thrifts

The OCC proposed a rule that would integrate the agency’s licensing rules for national banks and federal savings associations — including mutual institutions — and to a large extent create filing parity.

The 500-page proposal — part of the OCC's continuing process of reviewing national bank and thrift rules to determine whether it is appropriate to integrate them — makes changes to policies and procedures for both bank types related to new charters, conversions, mergers, branching, subsidiaries and other licensing issues.

The proposal would more closely align thrifts’ and national banks’ abilities to establish subsidiaries and invest in bank service companies, subject to statutory differences. The requirements for organizing documents for a new charter are different for national banks, thrifts and mutuals; the proposal would apply national bank requirements to thrifts with some additions. Consistent with underlying statutory authority, the proposal would align thrifts' authority to engage in reorganizations and business combinations with that of national banks.

The OCC also proposed several changes in regulations governing thrifts’ investment in premises, home office relocations and corporate title changes that would not generally apply to national banks. As they are today, national banks and thrifts would continue under the proposal to be subject to substantively different rules for branching and capital distributions.

The OCC’s changes to procedures for voluntary liquidation and changes in control, directors or senior management, addresses and assets apply to both charter types. ABA is examining the proposal closely and organizing a working group to review it. Comments will be due 60 days after publication in the Federal Register.

Read the proposed rule.
Read the OCC’s section-by-section overview.

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