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General Laws

Section 51. Except as provided in section 50, the proceedings of the compliance review supervisor and the contents of any compliance review document shall, notwithstanding any other law or regulation to the contrary, remain confidential and shall not be discoverable or admissible in evidence in any civil proceeding, except an enforcement proceeding brought under state law by the appropriate federal or state regulator of the bank, arising out of or related to any self testing programs conducted by such supervisor. A person who assists in any such program or who prepares, reviews or receives such compliance review document shall not be required to give testimony in any civil proceeding, except such enforcement proceeding by such federal or state regulator, as to any matters concerning the contents of any such compliance review document. Any evidence elicited from any such person relative thereto shall, except for said exception, be inadmissible in any such civil proceeding brought under state law.

The provisions of this section shall not apply to any such compliance review document if, after the receipt of a compliance review document from the compliance review supervisor, the board of directors or trustees of the bank:

(a) fails to take appropriate corrective action, unless a reasonable good faith determination has been made in writing by said directors that such action is not required; or

(b) voluntarily discloses all or any part of the details or conclusions of said compliance review document to an applicant or to the public, or otherwise uses the same as a defense to charges that the bank has violated any fair lending law; provided, however, that the disclosure to an applicant or to the public that the bank has a self testing program in existence or the release of said compliance review document to the commissioner or the bank’s primary federal regulator shall not be deemed to be a voluntary disclosure for this purpose.

The provisions of this section shall not apply to any information required by law or regulation to be maintained by or provided to a governmental agency while such information is in the possession of such agency to the extent that applicable law authorizes or requires its disclosure.

Nothing in this section shall be construed so as to limit the discovery or admissibility into evidence in any civil action of documents that have not been certified as compliance review documents.

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