First, a little about how overdraft protection works in general
Before we look at the specifics of the bounce protection program at The Bank of Missouri, let's talk about how these programs typically work. Ordinarily, if you write a check and you don't have the funds in your account to cover that amount when the check is presented to the bank, that check would be returned to the person or company you wrote it to. In these cases, customers will usually owe a fee to the merchant AND the bank for a "bounced check." This can get expensive, not to mention embarrassing. Knowing mistakes happen, many banks offer what is called bounce protection, or overdraft protection. While the program varies from bank to bank, the basic idea is your bank will go ahead and accept that check, up to a certain dollar limit. You save the money you would pay to the merchant and the hassle of dealing with the bounced check. But, this comes with a fee from your bank.
Additionally, banks may make this coverage available on debit card and ATM transactions. You should know banks are legally allowed to use their discretion is paying overdraft items. It's possible you could have this protection, but the bank may still choose not to pay the item. Sometimes, this service is automatically added to your account. In other cases, you have to request it. As a customer, you have the right to refuse these services.
Now, let's see how this works at The Bank of Missouri
Bounce Protection is automatically turned on for your account(s). For a new active account holder, you will be able to use this service after the account has been open for 30 days for consumer accounts and after 90 days for business accounts. If you're an existing customer opening an additional account, this service may be immediately available. Be sure to ask when you open the account.
As long as you keep your account in good standing, The Bank of Missouri will honor overdrafts up to your Bounce Protection limit. While there is no fee to be enrolled in Bounce Protection, the service carries an Overdraft (OD) Fee of $29.89 per item. There is a limit on the amount the bank will cover on your account and any Overdraft Fees will count against that limit too. You will need to contact us to obtain your limit.
How do I know when an item was paid using bounce protection?
You will receive an overdraft notice in the mail each time a check is paid using your Bounce Protection limit. The notice will show the check number, amount, and the Overdraft Fee. Because this is mailed, you may not know immediately that an item has been subject to an Overdraft Fee. We recommend using Online Banking to monitor your account and setting up alerts which will notify you any time your account falls below a certain balance. Otherwise, if you have made an error in your register, you might bounce items over a period of a few days before you are aware.
You have 15 calendar days to bring your account into a positive balance. If, after a period of time, your account is not brought back up to a positive balance, the account will be closed and further steps may be taken to recover the money.
How can I enroll and decline this service?
You may choose to no longer receive Bounce Protection at any time. Simply give us a call 888-547-6541 or stop by one of our convenient locations. Also, if you would like to enroll in our bounce protection for debit card and ATM transactions, please contact us. Remember, your account only comes with this service for checks written. You must opt out if you don't want this coverage for checks and you must opt in if you want this coverage for your debit/ATM card.
Let's look at those fees again.
Wait, didn't we cover this already? Yes, we did and it's worth repeating! Hey, we care and want you to be informed upfront. Writing checks with insufficient funds in your account will ALWAYS result in a fee. While we are pleased to offer you the convenience of overdraft protection, we want to make sure you understand the fees. They can add up quickly. Items paid with bounce protection carry an Overdraft Fee of $29.89 per item. If you go over the limit the bank covers for overdraft items, or if you have declined overdraft coverage, you will be charged a fee for Insufficient Funds instead, of $29.89 per item. Think of it this way, anytime you write a check without the funds in your account to cover it, you will pay a fee.
When I check my balance, is the bounce protection limit included?
No. The balance you will hear when you call the AnyTime Access 24-hour telephone banking service, or see when you check your balance in Online Banking or in our app will not include the bounce protection limit. If you have $500 in your account and $400 bounce protection limit, the balance you will see is $500, not $900.
Remember, we're here to help if you have questions about Bounce Protection. Give us a call 888-547-6541 or Contact Us online.