Courtesy Pay

How to Avoid Declined Debit Transactions, Returned Checks and Other Non-Sufficient Funds (NSF)

Sufficient Funds (NSF)

It can happen to anyone – returned (or “bounced”) checks and other types of payments originating from your checking account that are denied due to an insufficient available balance. NEFCU provides many different ways to help you avoid NSF incidents. We offer free online banking so you can check your account balances every day in real time. We offer automatic account alerts that will notify you of certain types of activity in your account, including when your account balance drops below a level that you specify, or when a debit transaction occurs. Using mobile banking, you can keep track of your account activity and make instant transfers from your smartphone or other mobile device. Or you can use your telephone and use our automated Accountline system to monitor your account activity and available balance to help prevent NSF incidents.

How we calculate your Available Balance

We start with the actual or beginning balance in your account and deduct any check holds or pending debit card transactions to determine the available balance. For non-PIN debit card purchases (such as those you sign for or an online transaction), the retailer submits the transaction to NEFCU and we place a debit card authorization hold on the funds until the transaction settles and posts to your account. For check holds, such as ATM check deposits, the first $200 is immediately available, however, the remainder may be held longer. For example:

Beginning account balance                                     $1,000
Debit card purchase made the prior night          -   100
Check for $500 deposited at ATM
($200 immediately available, however
$300 is held until the next business day)              +  200
Available balance                                                        $1,100

We use your available balance to determine whether a transaction will cause your account to overdraw. You can review both your actual balance and available balance when you review your account online, at an ATM, by phone or at a branch.



What is Courtesy Pay?

Courtesy Pay is another service we provide at NEFCU to help you avoid returned checks and other types of denied transactions due to an insufficient available balance. Courtesy Pay may be used to help cover check and ACH transactions, BillPay items originated from online banking, as well as transactions that you make using your debit card. With Courtesy Pay, NEFCU may pay the transaction for you even if you do not have sufficient available funds in your account.* For this service, we will charge you a Courtesy Pay/Paid NSF Fee of $19 per transaction item, which will be deducted from your account. You do not have to sign up for Courtesy Pay to work for your paper checks, BillPay or electronic (ACH) items you originated from your checking account. However, you do have to Opt-In if you want the protection of Courtesy Pay to apply to your everyday debit card transactions. Note that at NEFCU, we do NOT extend Courtesy Pay to ATM or non-checking account transactions.

What if I don’t want Courtesy Pay?

You can contact us to Opt-Out of Courtesy Pay if you do not want us to pay checks or other electronic transactions that won’t clear due to an insufficient available balance. If you choose to Opt-Out of Courtesy Pay then your check or other transactions will be returned when you do not have sufficient available funds in your account and you will be charged the standard Return Item Fee of $24 per item. In addition to the Return Item Fee you may be charged a fee and/or interest by the person or entity which presented the item for payment. Note: If you do not Opt-In to allow us to authorize debit card transactions that exceed your available balance, these transactions will be denied at point of purchase unless you have established other plans described below to cover these payments. There is no Return Item Fee assessed for denied debit card transactions. Please know your Opt-In and/or Opt-Out decision can be revoked or reinstated by you or the Credit Union at any time.

Are there other ways for me to prevent Overdraft and NSF fees?

Yes there are! At NEFCU, you can “link” your checking account to certain types of share accounts, such as savings and money market, or loan accounts. If you have established this link, available funds will automatically be transferred from one of your identified accounts into your checking account to cover the payment. Speak to a NEFCU Member Service Representative for additional details and related fees.

Table data for Overdraft Protection and Courtesy Pay Comparison
Overdraft Protection Courtesy Pay Alert Me
Service Description Overdraft Protection provides a link to your share draft checking account using a savings, power account or line of credit to automatically transfer available funds to cover overdrafts. Courtesy Pay is automatically available for checks, BillPay and electronic (ACH) items. Eligible members can also authorize NEFCU to extend Courtesy Pay to cover their one time debit card transactions with an Opt-In election.
Is there a fee? Yes. $2 per transfer. $19 per paid item. Courtesy Pay/Paid NSF Fee
How do I sign up? Speak to a Member Service Representative, call or write us. Speak to a Member Service Representative, call, or write us.
What happens if I do not Opt-In? Your transactions may be eligible to be covered by Courtesy Pay. Transactions that are paid through Courtesy Pay, including debit card transactions if you have Opted-In, will result in a higher overdraft fee. Your debit card transactions will be declined at point of sale if they exceed your available balance. Your other transactions will be considered for Courtesy Pay unless you have Opted-Out.
What additional information should I know? If you link a power account, any overdraft transfers will count toward your six withdrawals or transfers allowed each month. Transfers that exceed the six will result in an excess transfer fee. Signing up for Overdraft Protection could result in lower fees if you maintain available funds in your linked account. Additionally, you may change your Courtesy Pay elections at any time by contacting NEFCU.

Accounts of persons under the age of 18 are not eligible for Courtesy Pay services.

* We reserve the right to pay or not pay any item at our discretion when there are insufficient available funds in your account to cover the transaction. If we pay a check or item that would otherwise overdraw your account, you agree to pay the overdraft amount immediately (within 24 hours of notification or less). We may consider your relationship with the Credit Union, account history, financial behavior, and/or other factors when determining whether to pay an item (overdraft) or return the item for non-sufficient funds (NSF).