The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has approved a final rule that frees national banks and their mortgage subsidiaries from complying with state predatory lending laws.The final rule builds on a series of court decisions and OCC interpretations, according to Comptroller John Hawke Jr., and it allows the OCC to pre-empt specific types of state laws that interfere with the lending activities and other powers of national banks. The final rule also establishes an anti-predatory-lending standard for national banks. "We have seen only isolated cases of abusive practices among national banks," the comptroller said. "But when we have identified problems, we have taken quick and effective action." State attorneys general, legislators, and bank supervisors registered their opposition to the proposed rule. And New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer has threatened to sue the OCC if the pre-emption rule is finalized.

Subscribe Now

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the mortgage industry

30-Day Free Trial

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the mortgage industry