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Important Update: Changes in FDIC Deposit Insurance Coverage

The FDIC deposit insurance rules have undergone a series of changes starting in the fall of 2008. As a result, certain previously published information related to FDIC insurance coverage may not reflect the current rules. For details about the changes, visit Changes in FDIC Deposit Insurance Coverage. For more information about FDIC insurance, go to www.fdic.gov/deposit/deposits/index.html or call toll-free 1-877-ASK-FDIC (1-877-275-3342). For the hearing-impaired, the number is 1-800-925-4618.

Spring 2005 - A Special Guide for Young Adults

Five Things You Should Know About...

Checks and Checking Accounts

  1. Blank Check Shop around for a good deal, preferably an account without a monthly maintenance fee.

    Banks usually offer several accounts to choose from with different features, fees, interest rates, opening balance requirements and so on.

    And remember that what's good for your parents or your friends may not be best for you.

  2. Keep your checkbook up to date by recording all transactions, including ATM withdrawals, bank fees, purchases you make using a debit card, and any other deductions that do not involve writing a check.

    Also promptly compare your checkbook with your monthly statement or review your account information online or by telephone.

  3. Avoid "overdrawing your account," which can happen if you write a check or otherwise attempt to withdraw (by mistake) more money than you have in your account. It also is possible to overdraw your account using your debit card at the ATM or when making a purchase. These transactions can be costly. (See If at First You Don't Succeed)

  4. Consider Internet (online) banking. This service allows you to make payments or move money from one account to another through your bank's Web site instead of (or in addition to) writing and mailing paper checks. This saves on the costs of postage and buying paper checks.

    Online banking also allows you to monitor your account without having to wait for a statement in the mail.

  5. Pay attention to your bank statements. Immediately report any errors or unauthorized transactions (to protect yourself from accusations that you were negligent in managing your account).

    Look at your statement as soon as possible after it arrives in the mail or monitor your account more regularly on the Internet or through your bank's telephone banking service.


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Last Updated 5/17/2005