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Friday, February 22, 2008

UCC Article 1 Legislative Update (2/22)

As of January 1, 2008, Revised UCC Article 1 was in effect in 28 states -- Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and West Virginia.  Kansas's version of Revised Article 1, enacted last year, will take effect on July 1.  Of the 29 state enactments to date, 0 of 29 include the uniform Revised 1-301 choice of law provision -- each of the 29 enacting state legislatures having opted instead for some variation of its state's pre-revised 1-105 -- and only 20 of 29 include the uniform 1-201(b)(20) definition of "good faith" -- 9 state legislatures opting to retain the pre-revised "honesty in fact" definition in Article 1 and reserve "the observance of reasonable commercial standards of fair dealing" requirement for parties and transactions subject to that standard under another Article.

As of February 22, 2008, bills proposing to enact Revised Article 1 were pending in five states: Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Vermont.  Massachusetts HB 4302, which succeeds the previously unsuccessful HB 3731, is currently awaiting a third reading in the Massachusetts House.  Pennsylvania HB 1152, which was tabled last fall after passing the Pennsylvania House, was removed from the table on February 12 and awaits a third reading in the Pennsylvania Senate.  South Dakota SB 93 unanimously passed the South Dakota Senate on January 29, unanimously passed the South Dakota House yesterday, and now awaits Governor Mike Rounds's approval (or lack of disapproval, as the case may be).  Tennessee HB 3949 and SB 3993 were both introduced on January 31 and are currently before their first committees in their respective introducing chambers.  Vermont HB 563 passed the Vermont House on January 24 and is now before the Vermont Senate Economic Development, Housing & General Affairs Committee.  All five currently-pending bills reject the uniform Revised 1-301 choice of law provision (opting instead for some variation of pre-revised 1-105) and embrace the unitary good faith standard of uniform Revised 1-201(b)(20).

[Keith A. Rowley]

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