Yesterday marked a big win for credit unions over the American Bankers Association attempts to restrict growth as the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals issued an opinion upholding almost all portions of the NCUA’s field of membership (FOM) rule, which had been challenged by the ABA.
The ruling overturned a previous opinion by U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, allowing credit unions to serve Combined Statistical Areas of up to 2.5 million people and rural districts with up to 1 million people. The circuit court left intact the lower court’s holding that allowed credit unions to serve adjacent areas, but asked the NCUA to provide additional explanation for the removal of a requirement to serve the “core” of a Core-Based Statistical Area, which NCUA should be able to remedy by providing additional information to the District Court.
CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle applauded the cooperative work done by credit union trade groups to ensure credit unions’ ability to serve members.
“Today’s opinion by the D.C. Court of Appeals is a resounding victory for credit unions, their members, and communities across the country,” said Nussle. “That the court has recognized the benefits of an expanded field of membership speaks to the important role credit unions play in advancing financial inclusion. This is the second major recent legal victory for credit unions in the face of ill-conceived bank attacks, and speaks to the power of cooperation between CUNA, NAFCU, and CUNA Mutual Group.”