On June 17, 2021, President Biden signed Senate Bill 475 into law, making “Juneteenth” a federal holiday. Because June 19th (tomorrow) falls on a Saturday this year, the day will be observed by federal government offices on June 18, 2021 (today).

Continue Reading Immediate Enactment Of Juneteenth As A Federal Holiday Will Have Significant Impact On Mortgage Lenders And Other Consumer Lenders

OK, so you’re a sophisticated lending attorney in Metropolis who is comfortable with everything from aircraft financing to syndicated loans secured by casinos in Macau. Yet you feel a twinge of uncertainty when a business loan is to be secured by wine inventory made from grapes grown in both California and Washington. You know intuitively that anytime farmers, ranchers or food processors are in the mix, either as a borrower or a supplier to the borrower, the underwriting and documentation challenges are not uniform on a state-by-state basis, and are compounded by an overlay of federal laws designed to protect growers of perishable crops and providers of livestock. To get a reality check, you sometimes will secretly call your law school classmate who oddly returned to Smallville and now represents its one bank.
Continue Reading Farm Lending Pitfalls For Urban Lawyers

The 2021 increase to California’s homestead exemption to up to $600,000 stands to change the legal and economic relationship of guarantors with their lenders and vendors who make loans or sell goods or services on credit.  Before examining this important change in California’s homestead exemption and its effect on guaranties, some perspective is needed on guaranties themselves.
Continue Reading It’s Time to (Carefully) Secure that Guaranty

On August 31, both houses of the California legislature passed and sent to Governor Newsom for signature the California Consumer Financial Protection Law (the CCFPL).  Effective on January 1, 2021 if Governor Newsom signs the bill (which he is expected to do), the Department of Business Oversight will be replaced by the Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (DFPI).  Much of the law comes directly from Title X of the Dodd-Frank Act, with a particular focus on consumer protection.  While the DBO has authority to enforce specific laws, the focus of the DFPI will be on the kinds of products and services that are offered, without linking the agency’s authority to particular statutes.
Continue Reading California Legislature Passes Mini-CFPB Bill; If You Liked The Department Of Business Oversight, Get Ready For The Department Of Financial Protection And Innovation

On June 9 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) published a Factsheet on how to disclose title insurance on the Loan Estimate and Closing Disclosure, including when a negative owner’s title insurance cost disclosure is appropriate, and updated the TRID FAQs to include guidance on the total of payments disclosure, using the optional signature line on the Loan Estimate and Closing Disclosure, and the requirement to include seller information on the consumer’s disclosures if providing separate Closing Disclosures.  This blog discusses the Factsheet, and sets forth the four questions added to the FAQ, along with brief answers.
Continue Reading CFPB Issues Factsheet On TRID Title Insurance Disclosures And Updates TRID FAQ

On June 4 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued proposals to address issues arising from the required transition away from the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) scheduled for the end of 2021.  LIBOR has been widely used as a benchmark in consumer financial products such as adjustable rate mortgage loans, home equity lines of credit (HELOCs), student loans and credit cards.  The CFPB released a more than 200 page rulemaking proposal calling for changes to its truth-in-lending regulations relating to the LIBOR transition.  The CFPB also simultaneously issued guidance in the form of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)  This blog will emphasize the proposal’s and the FAQ’s impact on adjustable rate mortgage loans and HELOCs.
Continue Reading CFPB Issues Proposed Amendment to Regulation Z and Guidance to Deal with LIBOR Transition

With the World Health Organization declaring COVID-19 a pandemic on Wednesday, March 11, 2020, businesses are likely to continue to feel its effects.  When businesses are unable to perform their contractual obligations as a result of COVID-19, force majeure clauses may become important.
Continue Reading Force Majeure Clauses and COVID-19 – Can Force Majeure Clauses Excuse Performance Under New York or Delaware Law in a Pandemic?