On January 19, 2021, the FDIC’s Board of Directors adopted revised Guidelines for Appeals of Material Supervisory Determinations. The revised guidelines are intended to enhance the independence of appeals decisions and to clarify the procedures and timeframes that apply to appeals when the FDIC is taking a formal enforcement action. The revised guidelines generally replace the existing Supervision Appeals Review Committee (SARC) with an independent, standalone office within the FDIC, known as the Office of Supervisory Appeals (Office). The revised guidelines will take effect when the Office is fully operational; current guidelines will remain in effect until that time. The FDIC will publish a notice to inform institutions when this occurs.
Statement of Applicability to Institutions with Total Assets under $1 Billion: This Financial Institution Letter (FIL) applies to all FDIC-supervised institutions.
- The revised guidelines replace the SARC with an independent, standalone office within the FDIC, known as the Office of Supervisory Appeals.
- The Office will be independent of the Divisions that have authority to issue material supervisory determinations, while still operating within the FDIC.
- Appeals submitted to the Office will be decided by a panel of reviewing officials.
- To promote the independence of the Office, the FDIC will recruit externally. Reviewing officials will have bank supervisory or examination experience and serve on term appointments.
- The revised guidelines also:
- Change the standard of review for appeals to the Division Director so that the Division Director makes an independent supervisory determination without deferring to the judgments of either party;
- Require that communications between the Office and either supervisory staff or the appealing institution, including materials submitted to the Office for review, also be shared with the other party to the appeal;
- Allow an institution to request expedited review in its appeal to the Office; and
- Modify the procedures and timeframes for when determinations underlying formal enforcement-related actions may be appealed.
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