If you’ve ever dealt with a returned check or had a debit card unexpectedly declined, you know it doesn’t take much more than a few math errors to end up in an awkward situation. Despite your best efforts to keep an accurate account balance, accidents can and will happen. Maybe your paycheck hasn’t hit your account yet, or your spouse got a tank of gas on the way to work and forgot to tell you.
Whatever the reason, having a transaction declined or returned for insufficient funds can be embarrassing, frustrating, and expensive. Merchants may charge penalties of up to $200 dollars, and may even refer your bill to a collection agency. You could wind up with damage to your credit report. You could even find yourself in legal trouble. Knowingly writing a check where there is not enough money in the account to cover the promise you’ve made is a felony in most states, and you can face fines and jail time if convicted.
WVU Employees’ Federal Credit Union has the answer to your fears. Courtesy Pay is a program that automatically covers your overdraft transactions, up to a possible $300 for Share Draft Checking Accounts. It’s our way of extending you the courtesy of covering your transaction while assuming you’ll pay us back for it later. It’s the kind of outstanding service you’ve come to expect as a valued credit union member.
Courtesy Pay requires no action on your part. To make use of it, there’s nothing to sign or review and it costs you nothing unless you need to use it to cover a transaction. The comfort and security of knowing your overdrafts will be covered is a service you get just by using your checking account. If you should accidentally overdraw your account, a small convenience fee ($25.00) is added to the transaction only when utilized. You can pay this as soon as you’re able without any negative effects on your credit.
Courtesy Pay covers all sorts of transactions. It works on checks and bill pay. If you wish to extend it to debit card transactions, you’ll need to enable overdraft payment on your debit card. You can shop with peace of mind in knowing that your transactions will be covered.
It’s important to note that Courtesy Pay is not a loan, and you shouldn’t think of it as a line of credit. It’s protection against unexpectedly not having enough money in your account. You should not treat it like a credit limit on your debit card or rely on it to buy necessities. There is still a fee per transaction and you are expected to pay back the amount of your overdraft within a short period of time.
Some exceptions to this coverage may apply. If your credit history is complicated, or if you haven’t been a credit union member for long, you may not receive Courtesy Pay protection initially or at all in some situations. Some other requirements, like minimum balance in the account, may also apply. We will be happy to go over the details of Courtesy Pay and explain the specifics of your situation.
So relax. You can avoid the embarrassment and expense of a bad check thanks to the fantastic member services that’s available through WVU Employees’ Federal Credit Union.