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2000 - Rules and Regulations

Subpart C—Establishment and Relocation of Domestic Branches and Offices

§ 303.40  Scope.

(a)  General. This subpart sets forth the application requirements and procedures for insured state nonmember banks to establish a branch, relocate a branch or main office, and retain existing branches after the interstate relocation of the main office subject to the approval by the FDIC pursuant to sections 13(f), 13(k), 18(d) and 44 of the FDI Act.

(b)  Merger transaction. Applications for approval of the acquisition and establishment of branches in connection with a merger transaction under section 18(c) of the FDI Act (12 U.S.C. 1828(c)), are processed in accordance with subpart D (Merger Transactions) of this part.

(c)  Insured branches of foreign banks and foreign branches of domestic banks. Applications regarding insured branches of foreign banks and foreign branches of domestic banks are processed in accordance with subpart J (International Banking) of this part.

(d)  Interstate acquisition of individual branch. Applications requesting approval of the interstate acquisition of an individual branch or branches located in a state other than the applicant's home state without the acquisition of the whole bank are treated as interstate bank merger transactions under section 44 of the FDI Act (12 U.S.C. 1831u(a)), and are processed in accordance with subpart D (Merger Transactions) of this part.

[Codified to 12 C.F.R. § 303.40]

§ 303.41  Definitions.

For purposes of this subpart:

(a)  Branch, except as provided in this paragraph, includes any branch bank, branch office, additional office, or any branch place of business located in any State of the United States or in any territory of the United States, Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, the Virgin Islands, and the Northern Mariana Islands at which deposits are received or checks paid or money lent. A branch does not include an automated teller machine, an automated loan machine, a remote service unit, or a facility described in section 303.46. The term branch also includes the following:

(1)  A messenger service that is operated by a bank or its affiliate that picks up and delivers items relating to transactions in which deposits are received or checks paid or money lent. A messenger service established and operated by a non-affiliated third party generally does not constitute a branch for purposes of this subpart. Banks contracting with third parties to provide messenger services should consult with the FDIC to determine if the messenger service constitutes a branch.

(2)  A mobile branch, other than a messenger service, that does not have a single, permanent site and uses a vehicle that travels to various locations to enable the public to conduct banking business. A mobile branch may serve defined locations on a regular schedule or may serve a defined area at varying times and locations.

(3)  A temporary branch that operates for a limited period of time not to exceed one year as a public service, such as during an emergency or disaster situation.

(4)  A seasonal branch that operates at various periodically recurring intervals, such as during state and local fairs, college registration periods, and other similar occasions.

(b)  Branch relocation means a move within the same immediate neighborhood of the existing branch that does not substantially affect the nature of the business of the branch or the customers of the branch. Moving a branch to a location outside its immediate neighborhood is considered the closing of an existing branch and the establishment of a new branch. Closing of a branch is covered in the FDIC Statement of Policy Concerning Branch Closing Notices and Policies. 1 FDIC Law, Regulations, Related Acts 5391; see § 309.4 (a) and (b) of this chapter for availability.

(c)  De novo branch means a branch of a bank which is established by the bank as a branch and does not become a branch of such bank as a result of:

(1)  The acquisition by the bank of an insured depository institution or a branch of an insured depository institution; or

(2)  The conversion, merger, or consolidation of any such institution or branch.

(d)  Home state means the state by which the bank is chartered.

(e)  Host state means a state, other than the home state of the bank, in which the bank maintains, or seeks to establish and maintain, a branch.

[Codified to 12 C.F.R. § 303.41]

[Section 303.41 amended at 73 Fed. Reg. 35338, June 23, 2008; 73 Fed. Reg. 55432, September 25, 2008]

§ 303.42  Filing procedures.

(a)  General. An applicant shall submit an application to the appropriate FDIC office on the date the notice required by § 303.44 is published, or within 5 days after the date of the last required publication.

(b)  Content of filing. A complete letter application shall include the following information:

(1)  A statement of intent to establish a branch, or to relocate the main office or a branch;

(2)  The exact location of the proposed site including the street address. With regard to messenger services, specify the geographic area in which the services will be available. With regard to a mobile branch specify the community or communities in which the vehicle will operate and the manner in which it will be used;

(3)  Details concerning any involvement in the proposal by an insider of the bank as defined in § 303.2(u), including any financial arrangements relating to fees, the acquisition of property, leasing of property and construction contracts;

(4)  Comments on any changes in services to be offered, the community to be served, or any other effect the proposal may have on the applicant's compliance with the CRA;

(5)  A copy of each newspaper publication required by § 303.44 of this subpart, the name and address of the newspaper, and date of the publication;

(6)  When an application is submitted to relocate the main office of the applicant from one state to another, a statement of the applicant's intent regarding retention of branches in the state where the main office exists prior to relocation.

(c)  Undercapitalized institutions. Applications to establish a branch by applicants subject to section 38 of the FDI Act (12 U.S.C. 1831o) also should provide the information required by § 303.204. Applications pursuant to sections 38 and 18(d) of the FDI Act (12 U.S.C. 1831o and 1828(d)) may be filed concurrently or as a single application.

(d)  Additional information. The FDIC may request additional information to complete processing.

[Codified to 12 C.F.R. § 303.42]

[Section 303.42 amended at 85 Fed. Reg. 72555, November 13, 2020, effective December 14, 2020]

§ 303.43  Processing.

(a)  Expedited processing for eligible depository institutions. An application filed under this subpart by an eligible depository institution as defined in § 303.2(r) will be acknowledged in writing by the FDIC and will receive expedited processing, unless the applicant is notified in writing to the contrary and provided with the basis for that decision. The FDIC may remove an application from expedited processing for any of the reasons set forth in § 303.11(c)(2). Absent such removal, an application processed under expedited processing will be deemed approved on the latest of the following:

(1)  The 21st day after receipt by the FDIC of a substantially complete filing;

(2)  The 5th day after expiration of the comment period described in § 303.44; or

(3)  In the case of an application to establish and operate a de novo branch in a state that is not the applicant's home state and in which the applicant does not maintain a branch, the 5th day after the FDIC receives confirmation from the host state that the applicant has both complied with the filing requirements of the host state and submitted a copy of the application with the FDIC to the host state bank supervisor.

(b)  Standard processing. For those applications which are not processed pursuant to the expedited procedures, the FDIC will provide the applicant with written notification of the final action when the decision is rendered.

[Codified to 12 C.F.R. § 303.43]

§ 303.44  Public notice requirements.

(a)  Newspaper publications. For applications to establish or relocate a branch, a notice as described in § 303.7(c) shall be published once in a newspaper of general circulation. For applications to relocate a main office, notice shall be published at least once each week on the same day for two consecutive weeks. The required publication shall be made in the following communities:

(1)  To establish a branch. In the community in which the main office is located and in the communities to be served by the branch (including messenger services and mobile branches).

(2)  To relocate a main office. In the community in which the main office is currently located and in the community to which it is proposed the main office will relocate.

(3)  To relocate a branch. In the community in which the branch is located.

(b)  Public comments. Comments by interested parties must be received by the appropriate regional director within 15 days after the date of the last newspaper publication required by paragraph (a) of this section, unless the comment period has been extended or reopened in accordance with § 303.9(b)(2).

(c)  Lobby notices. In the case of applications to relocate a main office or a branch, a copy of the required newspaper publication shall be posted in the public lobby of the office to be relocated for at least 15 days beginning on the date of the last published notice required by paragraph (a) of this section.

[Codified to 12 C.F.R. § 303.44]

§ 303.45  Special provisions.

(a)  Emergency or disaster events. (1) In the case of an emergency or disaster at a main office or a branch which requires that an office be immediately relocated to a temporary location, applicants shall notify the appropriate FDIC office within 3 days of such temporary relocation.

(2)  Within 10 days of the temporary relocation resulting from an emergency or disaster, the bank shall submit a written application to the appropriate FDIC office, that identifies the nature of the emergency or disaster, specifies the location of the temporary branch, and provides an estimate of the duration the bank plans to operate the temporary branch.

(3)  As part of the review process, the FDIC will determine on a case by case basis whether additional information is necessary and may waive public notice requirements.

(b)  Redesignation of main office and existing branch. In cases where an applicant desires to redesignate its main office as a branch and redesignate an existing branch as the main office, a single application shall be submitted. The FDIC may waive the public notice requirements in instances where an application presents no significant or novel policy, supervisory, CRA, compliance or legal concerns. A waiver will be granted only to a redesignation within the applicant's home state.

(c)  Expiration of approval. Approval of an application expires if within 18 months after the approval date a branch has not commenced business or a relocation has not been completed.

[Codified to 12 C.F.R. § 303.45]

§ 303.46  Financial education programs that include the provision of bank products and services.

No branch application or prior approval is required in order for a state nonmember bank to participate in one or more financial education programs that involve receiving deposits, paying withdrawals, or lending money if:

(a)  Such service or services are provided on school premises, or a facility used by the school;

(b)  Such service or services are provided at the discretion of the school;

(c)  The principal purpose of each program is financial education. For example, the principal purpose of a program would be considered to be financial education if the program is designed to teach students the principles of personal financial management, banking operations, or the benefits of saving for the future, and is not designed for the purpose of profit-making; and

(d)  Each program is conducted in a manner that is consistent with safe and sound banking practices and complies with applicable law.

[Codified to 12 C.F.R. § 303.46]

[Section 303.46 added at 73 Fed. Reg. June 23, 2008]

§§ 303.47 – 303.59  [Reserved]

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