Code Section

Financial Code - FIN

DIVISION 1. FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS [99 - 819]

  ( Division 1 repealed and added by Stats. 2011, Ch. 243, Sec. 2. )
  

CHAPTER 3. Department of Business Oversight [300 - 414]

  ( Heading of Chapter 3 amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 352, Sec. 81. )
  

ARTICLE 2. Commissioner of Business Oversight [320 - 337]
  ( Heading of Article 2 amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 352, Sec. 82. )

  
329.  

(a) For purposes of this section, the following definitions apply:

(1) “Applicable law” means:

(A) With respect to any bank, Division 1.6 (commencing with Section 4800), and any of the following provisions:

(i) Article 6 (commencing with Section 405) of Chapter 3.

(ii) Article 3 (commencing with Section 1130) of Chapter 5 of Division 1.1.

(iii) Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 1200) of Division 1.1.

(iv) Chapter 10 (commencing with Section 1320) of Division 1.1.

(v) Chapter 14 (commencing with Section 1460) of Division 1.1.

(vi) Article 1 (commencing with Section 1530) of Chapter 15 of Division 1.1.

(vii) Chapter 16 (commencing with Section 1550) of Division 1.1.

(viii) Chapter 20 (commencing with Section 1750) of Division 1.1.

(ix) Section 456.

(x) Section 457.

(xi) Section 459.

(xii) Section 460.

(xiii) Section 461.

(xiv) Section 1331.

(xv) Chapter 21 (commencing with Section 1850) of Division 1.1.

(xvi) Chapter 18 (commencing with Section 1660) of Division 1.1.

(xvii) Chapter 19 (commencing with Section 1670) of Division 1.1.

(B) With respect to any savings association, any provision of Division 1.6 (commencing with Section 4800) and Division 2 (commencing with Section 5000).

(C) With respect to any insurance premium finance agency, any provision of Division 7 (commencing with Section 18000).

(D) With respect to any business and industrial development corporation, any provision of Division 15 (commencing with Section 31000).

(E) With respect to any credit union, any of the following provisions:

(i) Section 14252.

(ii) Section 14253.

(iii) Section 14255.

(iv) Article 4 (commencing with Section 14350) of Chapter 3 of Division 5.

(v) Section 14401.

(vi) Section 14404.

(vii) Section 14408, only as that section applies to gifts to directors, volunteers, and employees, and the related family or business interests of the directors, volunteers, and employees.

(viii) Section 14409.

(ix) Section 14410.

(x) Article 5 (commencing with Section 14600) of Chapter 4 of Division 5.

(xi) Article 6 (commencing with Section 14650) of Chapter 4 of Division 5, excluding subdivision (a) of Section 14651.

(xii) Section 14803.

(xiii) Section 14851.

(xiv) Section 14858.

(xv) Section 14860.

(xvi) Section 14861.

(xvii) Section 14863.

(F) With respect to any money transmitter, any provision of Division 1.2 (commencing with Section 2000).

(2) “Licensee” means any bank, savings association, credit union, trust company, money transmitter, insurance premium finance agency, or business and industrial development corporation that is authorized by the commissioner to conduct business in this state.

(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of this code that applies to a licensee or a subsidiary of a licensee, after notice and an opportunity to be heard, the commissioner may, by order that shall include findings of fact which incorporates a determination made in accordance with subdivision (e), levy civil penalties against any licensee or any subsidiary of a licensee who has violated any provision of applicable law, any order issued by the commissioner, any written agreement between the commissioner and the licensee or subsidiary of the licensee, or any condition of any approval issued by the commissioner. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, neither the commissioner nor any employee of the department shall disclose or permit the disclosure of any record, record of any action, or information contained in a record of any action, taken by the commissioner under the provisions of this section, unless the action was taken pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (b), to persons other than federal or state government employees who are authorized by statute to obtain the records in the performance of their official duties, unless the disclosure is authorized or requested by the affected licensee or the affected subsidiary of the licensee. The commissioner shall have the sole authority to bring any action with respect to a violation of applicable law subject to a penalty imposed under this section.

Except as provided in paragraphs (1) and (2), any penalty imposed by the commissioner may not exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000) a day, provided that the aggregate penalty of all offenses in any one action against any licensee or subsidiary of a licensee shall not exceed fifty thousand dollars ($50,000).

(1) If the commissioner determines that any licensee or subsidiary of the licensee has recklessly violated any applicable law, any order issued by the commissioner, any provision of any written agreement between the commissioner and the licensee or subsidiary, or any condition of any approval issued by the commissioner, the commissioner may impose a penalty not to exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000) per day, provided that the aggregate penalty of all offenses in an action against any licensee or subsidiary of a licensee shall not exceed seventy-five thousand dollars ($75,000).

(2) If the commissioner determines that any licensee or subsidiary of the licensee has knowingly violated any applicable law, any order issued by the commissioner, any provision of any written agreement between the commissioner and the licensee or subsidiary, or any condition of any approval issued by the commissioner, the commissioner may impose a penalty not to exceed ten thousand dollars ($10,000) per day, provided that the aggregate penalty of all offenses in an action against any licensee or subsidiary of a licensee shall not exceed 1 percent of the total assets of the licensee or subsidiary of a licensee subject to the penalty.

(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed to impair or impede the commissioner from pursuing any other administrative action allowed by law.

(d) Nothing in this section shall be construed to impair or impede the commissioner from bringing an action in court to enforce any law or order he or she has issued, including orders issued under this section. Nothing in this section shall be construed to impair or impede the commissioner from seeking any other damages or injunction allowed by law.

(e) In determining the amount and the appropriateness of initiating a civil money penalty under subdivision (b), the commissioner shall consider all of the following:

(1) Evidence that the violation or practice or breach of duty was intentional or was committed with a disregard of the law or with a disregard of the consequences to the institution.

(2) The duration and frequency of the violations, practices, or breaches of duties.

(3) The continuation of the violations, practices, or breaches of duty after the licensee or subsidiary of the licensee was notified, or, alternatively, its immediate cessation and correction.

(4) The failure to cooperate with the commissioner in effecting early resolution of the problem.

(5) Evidence of concealment of the violation, practice, or breach of duty or, alternatively, voluntary disclosure of the violation, practice, or breach of duty.

(6) Any threat of loss, actual loss, or other harm to the institution, including harm to the public confidence in the institution, and the degree of that harm.

(7) Evidence that a licensee or subsidiary of a licensee received financial gain or other benefit as a result of the violation, practice, or breach of duty.

(8) Evidence of any restitution paid by a licensee or subsidiary of a licensee of losses resulting from the violation, practice, or breach of duty.

(9) History of prior violations, practices, or breaches of duty, particularly where they are similar to the actions under consideration.

(10) Previous criticism of the institution for similar actions.

(11) Presence or absence of a compliance program and its effectiveness.

(12) Tendency to engage in violations of law, unsafe or unsound financial institutions practices, or breaches of duties.

(13) The existence of agreements, commitments, orders, or conditions imposed in writing intended to prevent the violation, practice, or breach of duty.

(14) Whether the violation, practice, or breach of duty causes quantifiable, economic benefit or loss to the licensee or the subsidiary of the licensee. In those cases, removal of the benefit or recompense of the loss usually will be insufficient, by itself, to promote compliance with the applicable law, order, or written agreement. The penalty amount should reflect a remedial purpose and should provide a deterrent to future misconduct.

(15) Other factors as the commissioner may, in his or her opinion, consider relevant to assessing the penalty or establishing the amount of the penalty.

(f) The amounts collected under this section shall be deposited in the appropriate fund of the department. For purposes of this subdivision, the term “appropriate fund” means the fund to which the annual assessments of fined licensees, or the parent licensee of the fined subsidiary, are credited.

(Amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 334, Sec. 19. (SB 537) Effective January 1, 2014.)