American Financial Services Association

OCC Finalizes Fair Access Rule

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OCC Finalizes Fair Access Rule

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) released its finalized rule to ensure fair access to banking services provided by large national banks, federal savings associations, and federal branches and agencies of foreign bank organizations. 

The rule codifies more than a decade of OCC guidance, which stated that banks should conduct risk assessments of individual customers, rather than make broad-based decisions affecting whole categories or classes of customers, when provisioning access to services, capital, and credit. 

AFSA commented on the rule when it was proposed, writing, “AFSA members are supportive of the OCC’s efforts to encourage Banks to offer financial products and services in a neutral manner, unaffected by subjective biases. 

AFSA went to say, In the recent past, the experience of initiatives such as Operation Choke Point, in which the OCC was not a participant, along with ad hoc decisions by financial institutions to deny products and services based on subjective biases have harmed the financial services sector as a whole. Consumer and business customers of financial institutions deserve service unimpeded by subjective biases, whether imposed by a particular financial institution or from the government. 

The Biden Administration may seek to roll back or slow down this rule.  

January 19th, 2021 by