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FDIC resolves 'Operation Choke Point' suit
The FDIC has resolved a lawsuit with Advance America, Cash Advance Centers, Inc., Check Into Cash, Inc., and Northstate Check Exchange (Advance America et al. v. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation et al). The lawsuit had alleged terminations of payday lender bank accounts under what was described as "Operation Choke Point." In exchange for the plaintiffs' agreement to dismiss the lawsuit, the FDIC issued: (1) a statement summarizing its longstanding policies and guidance regarding the circumstances in which the FDIC recommends that a financial institution terminate a customer's deposit account and reiterating preexisting public guidance to financial institutions about providing banking services and carrying out Bank Secrecy Act obligations; and (2) a cover letter transmitting the statement to the plaintiffs that reiterates prior correspondence from the FDIC Chairman, summarizes applicable FDIC policy, and notes that the FDIC is conducting additional training of its workforce.