ALEXANDRIA, Va. — NCUA announced 15 federally-insured credit unions were subject to civil money penalties for filing late Call Reports in the first quarter of 2015, down from 62 in the first quarter of 2014.

A spokesman for NCUA said the 15 figure was the lowest in "more than a year."

The 15 CUs have consented to the penalties and will pay a total of $5,107 in penalties, with individual penalties ranging from $45 to $943. The median penalty amounted to $195, the agency said.

In the prior quarter, the fourth quarter of 2014, 28 credit unions were assessed late fines totaling $13,650.

Under terms of The Federal Credit Union Act, the NCUA is obliged to send any funds received through civil money penalties to the U.S. Treasury.

NCUA explained that the assessment of penalties generally depends on three factors: the credit union's asset size, its recent Call Report filing history and the length of the delay.

On the whole, 25 credit unions filed Call Reports late for the first quarter of 2015, but NCUA indicated that after consulting regional offices and, when appropriate, state supervisory authorities to review each case, the agency determined "mitigating circumstances" in three cases which led to those credit unions not being penalized. NCUA informed the other 22 credit unions of the penalties they faced and advised them they could reduce their penalties by signing a consent agreement. NCUA also said it would initiate administrative hearings against credit unions that did not consent. Subsequently, NCUA granted waivers to seven of those credit unions.

The list of fifteen penalty-paying late filers can be found here.

NCUA noted that of the 15 credit unions agreeing to pay penalties, most of them (ten) are tiny institutions with assets below $10 million; while four had assets of between $10 million and $50 million; and only one had assets between $50 million and $250 million.

Moreover, one of the late-filing credit unions had been late in a previous quarter.

"We've made real progress during the last year, but full compliance with NCUA's quarterly filing deadlines is still the goal," Debbie Matz, NCUA's board chairman said in a statement. "To help, NCUA offers assistance so that credit unions can meet their obligations."

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