Bits and Bytes
Thomas, Karen M., Independent Banker
Regulators address a host of electronic payment and transaction rules
Issue: Proposal to permit electronic delivery of disclosures required by Regulations B (Equal Credit Opportunity), E (Electronic Fund Transfers), M (Consumer Leasing), Z (Truth in Lending) and DD (Truth in Savings), as long as the consumer agrees to the electronic format. Proposal would also establish an interim rule under Regulation DD permitting immediate use of electronic periodic statements for savings accounts and time deposits.
Agency: Federal Reserve Board. ICBA Comments:
Agreed that use of electronic communications to provide required disclosures is appropriate;
Agreed it is appropriate to require display of required disclosures prior to proceeding with a transaction;
Said uniform 15-day time period for "notice of change" disclosures under all regulations is reasonable; Opposed requiring use of returnreceipt e-mails to verify consumer receipt of electronic disclosures;
Recommended that facsimiles be treated as a written document instead of as an electronic document as proposed;
Opposed requiring financial institutions to post disclosures on their Web sites for 90 days and retain a copy for 25 months from the date of the original distribution;
Urged that financial institutions be permitted to provide either a tollfree phone number or e-mail address to respond to customer inquiries; and
Advised a review of those situations where a bank should be permitted to require a signed, paper document (such as an affidavit) to protect all parties to a transaction.
Electronic Transfer Account
Issue: Proposed form for banks offering ETAs (accounts provided by participating financial institutions for deposit of Federal benefits payments subject to Department of Treasury rules) to report the number of accounts opened and closed each month.
Agency: Department of the Treasury, Financial Management Service. …