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Modern Slavery Statement Guidance – Note to Financial Institutions

The United Kingdom Home Office has released guidance to companies that are required to make a public statement about human trafficking risks and prevention measures under the U.K. Modern Slavery Act of 2015.  Organizations are to address the emerging risks of exploitation at the company and in the supply chain caused by COVID-19 in their statement against modern slavery.

The guidance encourages careful consideration of the risks posed by changes in operations and supply chains that may result from the current economic crisis, including fluctuation in product or service demands and ...

Legislative and Bank Regulatory Actions to Assist Forbearance in a Pandemic World

By Kristina Whittaker and Ed O'Keefe.  For the last three weeks or so, the federal and state banking agencies, collectively and individually, have, with increasing urgency, called on financial institutions to meet the financial needs of customers impacted by the COVID-19. Congress has now codified some of the guidance in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). To assist our clients in understanding the scale and scope of the regulatory actions, we describe the state of play as we know it today. 

As first discussed in the article by our colleagues Neil ...

COVID-19 National and State Relief Efforts Focus on Single Family Mortgage Loans

The shuttered storefronts and grounded airplanes that by now have become an all too familiar image of the COVID-19 pandemic are quickly creating a ripple effect through the U.S. economy. As unemployment rises and Americans struggle to pay their bills, federal and state governments and agencies are rushing to provide aid to those most impacted by the virus. A key focus of those efforts has been on mortgage related relief. This article canvasses the rapidly changing regulatory environment related to single family mortgage loans and provides an overview of the relief available to ...

Financial Services Regulators Call for Preparedness and Flexibility in Supervised Institutions’ Responses to COVID-19

By Kate Wellman and Neil Bloomfield. As COVID-19 continues to spread globally, U.S. financial services regulators have released guidance to their supervised institutions to encourage proactive planning for what may be months of sustained impact to business infrastructure and the financial system.  The theme running through recent guidance released by the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC), Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), and federal and state banking agencies is the need for flexibility.  Financial institutions, like all of us ...

Never Waste a Crisis: How Coronavirus May Help Shape the LIBOR Transition

The transition away from LIBOR was born from the financial crisis.  For years regulators have been pushing for an alternative to the dominant market benchmark.  The underlying market was illiquid.  The rate was set by opinion, not transactions.  It was easily manipulated.  It was set by only the largest of financial institutions.  In the U.S., SOFR—the secured overnight funding rate—has been designated as the LIBOR replacement.  In many ways, it cures the ills of LIBOR.  The underlying market is liquid and the rate is set by actual transactions.  But in many ways it is wholly dissimilar to ...

A Time of Testing – What Lawyers Can Do

A black swan has arrived – the Pandemic of 2020 and with it a bear market. As with previous black swan events, experts and leaders are in learning mode, with the facts and events evolving hourly. As my financial advisor told me, this event cannot be modeled. Nonetheless, there are lessons learned from past crises – we are facing not just a health crisis uprooting lives and businesses, but also we can expect significant economic impact. The event will have effects longer than initially predicted or imagined.

In such circumstances, what should be on in-house lawyers’ and leaders ...

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As government authorities around the world conduct overlapping investigations and bring parallel proceedings in evolving regulatory environments, companies face challenging regulatory and criminal enforcement dynamics. We help keep our clients up to date in these fast-moving areas and to serve as a thought leader.

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