FTC agrees to take no action pending appeal

first_img June 15, 2004 Regular News FTC agrees to take no action pending appeal In Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act enforcement case The Federal Trade Commission has said that unless a U.S. district court decision holding lawyers are not subject to the privacy provisions of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act is reversed, it will take no action against lawyers who do not comply with the act.In April, the ABA and the New York State Bar Association were successful in their lawsuit challenging the FTC’s decision that lawyers are subject to the privacy provisions of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act if, as part of their law practice, they provide real estate, tax, estate planning, or other financially related legal advice to individuals. The FTC has until July 12 to decide whether to appeal.In response to the ABA’s request, the William E. Kovacic, general counsel of the FTC, said, “[U]nless and until the district’s April 30, 2004 order or any judgment embodying that order is reversed, the Federal Trade Commission will not bring any enforcement actions or conduct any investigations against practicing lawyers under Title V, Subtitle A, of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, 15 U.S.C §§6801-09, for any action, inaction or failure to comply by them during the period preceding reversal.”The ABA asked the FTC for this assurance because many attorneys have requested guidance about their responsibilities in light of the district court’s decision, said ABA President Dennis W. Archer.“While we are all hopeful that the court’s decision will stand, the ABA is also seeking congressional action on this issue,” Archer said.U.S. District Judge for the District of Columbia Reggie B. Walton agreed with ABA and NYSBA’s assertion that Congress never intended the privacy provisions to apply to lawyers.“Judge Walton’s decision has reaffirmed what lawyers’ groups have contended since the inception of GLBA — that there is no evidence that Congress ever intended the act to apply to lawyers,” said NYSBA President A. Thomas Levin. “Lawyers are already bound by strict codes of professional responsibility that govern their daily ethical and business behavior and provide far greater protection of a client’s personal information than this act requires of financial institutions.”In its lawsuit, the NYSBA asserted that the FTC acted “arbitrarily and capriciously” in refusing to exempt lawyers from the regulation. It also said that GLBA, as it applies to lawyers, is unconstitutional under the 10th Amendment, which governs states’ rights. In the United States, only states have the ability to license lawyers; there is no federal entity that does so. NYSBA argued that without clear evidence of congressional intent, the court should not even address the question of whether the federal government has the authority to regulate this area.Also known as the Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999, GLBA requires financial institutions to provide “a clear disclosure to all their clients concerning their privacy policies” and to explain how they individually share information with affiliates and third parties. The act defines a “financial institution” as “any institution the business of which is engaging in financial activities within the meaning of the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956.” The FTC argued that lawyers engaged in such practice areas as tax planning and transactions, estate planning, real estate closings, and personal bankruptcy should be subject to GLBA. FTC agrees to take no action pending appeallast_img read more

NCUA updates policy on audit report access for examiners

first_imgThe NCUA has updated its policies on how and when examiners will review a credit union’s audit reports that are prepared by an external auditor, specifying that newly completed audits be sent directly to the examiner from the auditor.This change affects all federally-insured credit unions.The NCUA states that in addition to obtaining the audit report directly from the external auditor, an examiner can also obtain the information by using a secure portal or by conducting a physical inspection of the audit report at an agreed upon time and place.During a NAFCU webcast in February, NCUA Deputy Director of the agency’s Office of Examination and Insurance Tim Segerson provided credit union viewers with an in-depth analysis of what credit unions should expect during an examination and said the agency would be providing additional guidance on this process. A NAFCU Compliance Blog post in February also addressed this topic. continue reading » 14SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

McIlroy to represent Ireland in Rio

first_img It had been suggested the decision could be taken out of McIlroy’s hands by an Olympic regulation which stated he could only represent Great Britain if three years have passed since representing Ireland. That rule means McDowell had already committed to playing for Ireland in Rio by contesting last year’s World Cup in Melbourne, but McIlroy added: “There’s been a lot of people giving their opinion and what they think I should do. “But at the end of the day it’s a decision that I had to make for myself because it’s something that you have to live with. It’s taken me long enough to sort of get over the hurdle, but it’s definitely the right decision.” McDowell welcomed the news and said he had not received any negative reaction to his own, which could see the Ryder Cup team-mates reunited in Rio. “I think it’s great that he’s put it to bed at last,” McDowell said. “I think it was a contentious, complicated, complex issue that I suppose could have been settled very quickly with a straight answer. “I’m glad that he’s committed and I’m hoping to be there alongside him. There’s no doubt he’ll be there. I just have to keep my game ticking over and hopefully I’ll be there, as well. “We are in a very unique scenario in Northern Ireland. We could easily declare for Great Britain or we could easily declare for Ireland. We have all-Ireland teams and we have sports which are split; obviously soccer is two teams and rugby is one team. “To me, golf is always an all-Ireland sport. I grew up wanting to wear the green blazer with a Shamrock on it and have a green golf bag with the Ireland logo on it. So it makes sense that the best players in Ireland, whether it be north or south of the border, should want to represent Ireland in the Olympic Games. “It’s a very difficult decision, though, because if you want to get religious or political about it, declaring for one or the other, you’re going to upset someone theoretically. “I was kind of glad that I had the opportunity to play the World Cup last year and put it to bed personally for me. There’s been absolutely no negative reaction and I don’t expect there to be any negative reaction (to McIlroy). “From a golfing point of view, as players we receive equal support from north and south of the border. Thankfully our sport doesn’t really kind of draw that contentious crowd like some of the other sports do. “I don’t see there being any problem with this. Anybody that wants to have a problem with it is looking too hard at it really.” Boxer Paddy Barnes, who won gold for Northern Ireland in the Commonwealth Games in 2010 and bronze while representing Ireland at the Beijing and London Olympics, said he did not want to see McIlroy representing Ireland in Rio. Writing on Twitter, Barnes predicted McIlroy would be the flag bearer in 2016 and added: “The reason I don’t like Mcilroy representing Ireland at the Olympics is because he doubted going for Ireland, you should be proud to!” McIlroy had previously spoken of being in an “extremely sensitive and difficult position” over the issue of representing Ireland or Great Britain and Northern Ireland, not to mention the third option of simply not playing to avoid controversy. But on the eve of the Irish Open at Fota Island the 25-year-old from Northern Ireland revealed he would continue to represent Ireland, as he did throughout his amateur career and twice in the World Cup. “I’ve been thinking about it a lot,” McIlroy told a pre-tournament press conference. “I don’t know whether it’s been because the World Cup has been in Brazil and I’ve been thinking a couple of years down the line. “Thinking about all the times that I played as an amateur for Ireland and as a boy and everything, I think for me it’s the right decision to play for Ireland in 2016.” Asked if he had been “torn” on the issue, the former world number one added: “More worried about what other people would think, rather than me. But you’ve got to do what’s right for yourself and what you feel most comfortable with, and ultimately that was the decision that I made. “I was always very proud to put on the Irish uniform and I would be very proud to do it again. Just because I’m playing golf for money and I’m a professional I’m supposed to have this choice or this decision to make, where if you look at the rugby players, cricketers or hockey players, they view Ireland as one, the same as we do in golf. “I don’t think there’s any point to change that or go against that just because it’s a different event or it’s the Olympics.” Golf’s world rankings will be instrumental in the make-up of the 60-player field in Brazil in two years’ time, with sixth-ranked McIlroy firmly on course to be involved. McIlroy, who split from fiancee Caroline Wozniacki last month, added of his Olympic decision: “I’ve had a lot of time on my own the last few weeks and just been thinking about it a lot. It’s something that’s been quite important to me and something that I needed to make some sort of decision or some sort of stand on it. “Just weighing up everything, and thinking back about the times that I played for Ireland and won the European Team championship with Ireland, I just thought why change that? Basically it’s just a continuation of what I’ve always done.” Press Association Graeme McDowell does not expect Rory McIlroy to receive any criticism for electing to represent Ireland when golf makes its return to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.last_img read more