Banking and credit union trade groups joined the Justice Department late last week in asking a federal appeals court to delay any action affecting credit union membership limits until Sept. 1.

All parties agreed that the court should not react to a Feb. 25 Supreme Court ruling that credit union members must share a single, common bond until Congress acts on legislation that would reverse the decision.

Previously, the appeals court had set a May 26 deadline for motions on whether it should lift a stay that has let occupation-based credit unions continue adding members from companies outside their common bond that they already serve.

"What Congress does or does not do makes all the difference in the world," said Michael F. Crotty, the American Bankers Association's deputy counsel for litigation.

The House approved legislation in April that would let credit unions serve any company with fewer than 3,000 employees, and the Senate is expected to pass a similar bill this summer.

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