OTS vs. the Bar: Must Attorneys Advise Directors that the Directors Owe a Duty to the Depository Fund?
Fortney, Susan Saab
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This article explores the liability of attorneys representing depository institutions. Part I of this article introduces the controversy over the proper role of bank counsel following the bank and thrift crisis. Part II discusses the first Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS) actions against attorneys. Part III considers the emerging theory of liability based on counsel’s duty to advise directors on their duties to depositors and the depository fund. In Part IV, a comparison of the experience of the securities bar to that of the banking bar demonstrates how the government’s enforcement activity has already changed attorney’s perceptions of their role and their approach to law practice. Part V concludes by considering questions related to the proper role of counsel.