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Monday, December 22, 2014

Dig It

Now that the Berthoud High School addition is completed, and the ground is workable, crews began installing a much-needed irrigation system around the school building this week.

How Safe is Your Bank Account? Understanding the FDIC’s Insurance Coverage

By Shari Phiel
Berthoud Recorder

For the past decade the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation averaged only three to four bank closings per year. But that changed in 2008 which saw the FDIC, the independent agency tasked with preserving public confidence in U.S. financial institutions, closing a total of 25 banks.

With 29 closings in just the first four months of 2009 alone, the FDIC hasn’t faced this many bank failures since the savings and loan crisis of the late 1980s and early 1990s — which cost taxpayers more than $160 billion. In February, the FDIC bumped the estimated cost for bank failures over the next few years to $40 billion although John Bovenzi, the agency’s chief operating officer stated losses will likely surpass that number.

Not surprisingly, this has left many bank customers with questions about the safety and security of their accounts. Colorado-based Guaranty Bank and Trust, which operates a branch location at 807 Mountain Ave. in Berthoud, provided these answers to frequently asked questions about the FDIC’s insurance coverage. Guaranty Bank is an FDIC insured bank.

How do I know if my deposits are FDIC insured at my bank?
FDIC member banks can provide customers with access to the tools and resources they need to understand how FDIC insurance works.
Check to see if your bank is a member of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).

The FDIC is an independent agency of the U.S. government and protects depositors against the loss of their deposits if an FDIC-insured bank or savings association fails.
FDIC insurance is backed by the full faith and credit of the U. S. government.

What is the basic deposit insurance limit?
Effective through Dec. 31, 2009:

Basic FDIC deposit insurance coverage has been increased from $100,000 to $250,000 per depositor per insured financial institution

Many banks are also participating in a program that will temporarily provide separate unlimited FDIC insurance coverage on deposits held in non-interest bearing personal and business checking accounts.

On Jan.1, 2010:
Basic FDIC deposit insurance coverage will revert back to $100,000, except for certain retirement accounts, which will remain at $250,000.

The separate unlimited FDIC deposit insurance coverage for non-interest bearing personal and business checking accounts will be eliminated.

Do I qualify for coverage over the basic insurance limits?
The FDIC provides separate insurance coverage for deposit accounts held in different categories of ownership. In addition to the separate unlimited insurance coverage on non-interest bearing personal and business checking accounts, it is possible to qualify for more than the current $250,000 in coverage at one insured bank if you own deposit accounts in different ownership categories. The ownership categories are:

  • Single
  • Joint
  • Revocable trust (informal revocable trusts such as payable-on-death accounts and formal revocable trusts such as living/family trusts created for estate planning purposes)
  • Irrevocable trusts,
  • Certain retirement plans
  • Employee benefit plans
  • Business (corporation, partnership unincorporated associations)
  • Government entities

What types of accounts are insured by the FDIC?
The FDIC insures all deposits including: checking accounts, NOW accounts, savings accounts, money market deposit accounts, certificates of deposit (CDs) accounts, certain retirement accounts (IRAs), outstanding cashier’s checks issued by insured bank.

What is not insured by the FDIC?
The FDIC does not insure the money invested in stocks, bonds, mutual funds, life insurance policies, annuities, or municipal securities, even if purchased from an insured bank. The FDIC also does not insure the contents of a safe deposit box.

What can I do if I still have questions?
For more information, call the FDIC at 1-877-ASK-FDIC (1-877-275-3342) from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (EDT) or visit them online at

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