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Personal

Overdraft Protection

You may have heard about some changes the Federal Reserve has implemented regarding overdrafts. For Northrim Bank customers, this will only affect personal debit card transactions completed at the time of purchase. These changes do not apply to checks or the payment of electronic withdrawals from checking accounts. The changes apply only to personal checking accounts and not business accounts.

We would like to give you the information you need so you can decide whether to continue to use overdraft services for personal debit card transactions completed at the time of purchase and enjoy the convenience we provide.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an overdraft?
What is Northrim's standard overdraft coverage?
How do the new overdraft changes affect me?
When do these changes go into effect?
What is the fee if I choose to opt in?
How do I opt in?
Can I change my decision to continue this service?
What is the difference between standard overdraft coverage and Overdraft Protection?
How can I avoid overdrawing my account?
I have a joint account; do both of us need to opt in?
Why does the regulation apply only to ATM and one-time debit transactions?
If I do not opt in, does it mean I will never overdraw my account using a debit card for one-time transactions?
Can I opt in at the time of purchase, using my debit card?


What is an overdraft?
An overdraft occurs when there are not sufficient available funds in the account to pay the transaction, and the bank chooses to honor the transaction over and above the available balance.


What is Northrim's standard overdraft coverage? It is a service we provide in which we pay the overdraft as an accommodation, trusting that you will repay the amount of the overdraft. There is a fee associated with this service for Northrim Bank.


How do the overdraft changes affect me?
The changes only affect debit card transactions on personal accounts made at the time of purchase. Customers must opt in, before the bank can charge an overdraft fee for paying an ATM or one-time debit card transaction that will cause an overdraft. Northrim does not allow overdrafts at the ATM, so for our customers, this change only applies to one-time debit card transactions made at the time of purchase.


When did these changes go into effect?
This regulation took effect August 15, 2010 for existing accounts (those opened prior to July 1, 2010) and on July 1, 2010 for new accounts (those opened on or after July 1, 2010). As of these dates, Northrim Bank will not pay overdrafts on your debit card transactions at the time of purchase if you do not opt in.


What is the fee if I choose to opt in?
There is no fee for this service if you do not use it. Under our standard overdraft practices, we will charge you a fee each time we pay an overdraft (maximum of five fees per day).

Non-Sufficient Available Funds (NSF) Fees

NSF Charge on Items Paid or Returned
Transaction Amount:
Up to $10.00 $10.00 each
$10.01-$20.00 $20.00 each
Over $20.00 $25.00 each

Fee applies to NSF created by check, in-person withdrawal, or ACH withdrawal. Maximum 5 fees per day including POS NSF charges.

POS NSF Charge
Transaction Amount:
Up to $10.00 $10.00 each
$10.01-$20.00 $20.00 each
Over $20.00 $25.00 each

Fee applies to NSF created by point of sale transactions at the time of purchase using your debit card. Maximum 5 fees per day including regular NSF charges.


How do I opt in?
You can opt in online, by phone, or in writing. You can download and print our Opt In Form, or if you have Northrim Online Banking, you can opt in by logging in to your secure Online Banking session and clicking on the Opt in Request tab. If you want to opt in by phone or in person, please contact us or visit one of our convenient locations.


Can I change my decision to continue this service?
Yes. You can change your decision to have overdraft coverage at any time.


What is the difference between standard overdraft coverage and Overdraft Protection?
Overdraft coverage is a service provided by banks to authorize ATM and debit card transactions at the time of purchase for customers even if the amount was more than the available balance. In exchange for providing this service, we charge customers a fee for each transaction. Overdraft Protection is an additional service that allows bank customers to link their checking account to other Northrim Bank accounts to cover overdrafts.


How can I avoid overdrawing my account?
At Northrim Bank, we want to help you effectively manage your account. We offer a number of tools to keep you in control of your account balance. With Northrim’s free Online Banking, you can keep track of your accounts anytime and set up balance alerts to be sent to your email. Through Overdraft Protection, you can link your checking account to a qualified savings account. In the case of an overdraft, the money is transferred from the savings account to bring the checking balance to zero. There is a $7.50 per day fee for the transfer from savings. You can also link your checking account to a personal line of credit.


I have a joint account; do both of us need to opt in?
No. Any account owner on an account may make this decision and it applies to all account owners.


Why does the regulation apply only to ATM and one-time debit transactions?
The regulation's intention is to ensure that customers understand overdraft services when using their debit card to complete purchases at merchants or withdrawing cash at an ATM.


If I do not opt in, does it mean I will never overdraw my account using a debit card for one-time transactions?
No. There are limited circumstances when you will overdraw your account due to other pending transactions and the bank is unable to avoid paying your debit card transaction. In these cases, the bank may not charge an overdraft fee, but you would still need to repay the bank to cover the overdraft.


Can I opt in at the time of purchase, using my debit card? No. You must opt in to the service before the bank will authorize your one-time debit card transactions. If you think you will want your one-time debit card transactions paid, and you have not previously opted in, please contact us and opt in to the service.


Would you like us to contact you to help you opt in? Simply fill out the form below and we will contact you during our normal business hours.

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