To protect the health and safety of the public and our employees, the Department of Banking has limited the number of employees at our office at 260 Constitution Plaza in Hartford. When contacting the Department, please use electronic communication whenever possible. Consumers are encouraged to use our online form for complaints. If you are unsure where to send an inquiry, you may send it to Department.Banking@ct.gov and it will be routed appropriately. Thank you for your patience during this time.

The Department of Banking News Bulletin 

Bulletin # 2964 - Week Ending December 11, 2020

 

This bulletin constitutes the only official notification you will receive from this office concerning any of the following applications.  Any observations you may have are solicited.  Any comments should be in writing to Jorge L. Perez, Banking Commissioner, Department of Banking, 260 Constitution Plaza, Hartford, CT 06103-1800.  Written comments will be considered only if they are received within ten business days from the date of this bulletin.

 

DEPOSIT INDEX AND INTEREST RATES
Pursuant to Section 36a-26 of the Connecticut General Statutes, the Commissioner has determined the deposit index for the calendar year 2021 to be 0.08%

The following rates are for the period commencing January 1, 2021 and ending December 31, 2021. The type of account and statutory reference are listed along with the rate.

Calendar Year 2021
Account Statutory Reference Interest Rate
Rental Security deposit 47a-21(i) 0.08%
Claims for property, funds, or
money delivered to the State
Treasurer

3-70a(e)

0.08%

Mortgage escrow accounts

 

49-2a
(section requires that the interest rate
be not less than the deposit index,
rounded to the nearest one-tenth of
one percentage point)

0.10%

 

Public service company, certified
telecommunications provider
and electric supplier customer
security deposits

16-262j(c)
(section requires that the interest rate
be not less than the higher of the
deposit index, rounded to the nearest
one-tenth of one percentage point,
or 1.5%)

1.5%

 

 


PLEASE NOTE: The interest rates provided herein are done as a convenience to the public; the Commissioner has no authority to establish interest rates beyond what is provided in statute. Accordingly, parties required to pay interest under these sections must ensure compliance with the applicable statute(s).
 
OUT OF STATE BANK ACTIVITY
On December 9, 2020, Berkshire Bank, a Massachusetts-chartered bank, filed notice pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes Sections 36a-412 and 36a-145 of the proposed closing of its branches at 180 River Road (Route 12) in Lisbon, CT and 474 Boston Post Road in North Windham, CT, as of February 26, 2021. 

CONSUMER CREDIT DIVISION ACTIVITY
Settlement Agreement and Consent Order

On December 7, 2020, the Commissioner, along with the mortgage regulators from 47 other states and 3 territories (“Participating States”) entered into a Settlement Agreement and Consent Order (“Consent Order”) with Nationstar Mortgage LLC d/b/a Mr. Cooper (NMLS # 2119) (“Nationstar”) Coppell, Texas. The Consent Order was based on multi-state examinations concerning Nationstar’s origination and servicing practices performed by several states including Connecticut. As a result of the multi-state examinations, the Commissioner, together with the Participating States, alleged that Nationstar violated various provisions governing mortgage origination and servicing, including, but not limited to requirements concerning administration of escrow accounts and loss mitigation activity, as well as origination practices. As part of the Consent Order, Nationstar, among other items, agreed to: (1) comply with certain enumerated mortgage servicing standards for a period of at least three years, commencing no later than January 1, 2021; (2) enhance, implement and maintain an Enterprise Risk Management Program to identify, measure, monitor and control risk; (3) appoint a Settlement Administrator to oversee the distribution of approximately $15.6 million for loss mitigation issues, bankruptcy related escrow shortage payment issues and foreclosure-related injuries and approximately $6.4 million for borrowers affected by service transfers and property preservation practices; and (4) pay an administrative penalty of $750,000 and administrative costs of $455,000 to the Participating States. The Consent Order also acknowledges that Nationstar, working with the Participating States and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, had already provided approximately $57.7 million in consumer relief relating to servicing issues and approximately $4.9 million in consumer relief pertaining to its origination practices.
 
SECURITIES AND BUSINESS INVESTMENTS DIVISION ACTIVITY

Financial Vision Advisory Services, LLC (CRD No. 120921)

On December 9, 2020, the Banking Commissioner entered into a Stipulation and Agreement (No. ST-20-2022180-S) with Financial Vision Advisory Services, LLC, a Connecticut-registered investment adviser located at 111 Founders Plaza, East Hartford, Connecticut 06108. The Stipulation and Agreement alleged that 1) in contravention of Section 36b-6(c)(3) of the Connecticut Uniform Securities Act, the firm continued to pay advisory fees to an unregistered individual once that individual left the firm's employ; and 2) the firm transacted business from an unregistered branch office in violation of Section 36b-6(d) of the Act. The Stipulation and Agreement acknowledged the firm's representations that it had relied on legal counsel and an outside consultant, respectively, in not registering the affected individual or the branch office. The branch office has since become registered.

In resolution of the matter, the firm agreed to refrain from regulatory violations and to remit $5,375 to the agency. Of that amount, $5,000 constituted an administrative fine and $375 represented reimbursement for past due investment adviser agent registration fees.
 


      Dated: Wednesday, December 16, 2020

      Jorge L. Perez
      Banking Commissioner