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Branch Closing Time Limits

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I heard that banking institutions cannot be closed more than 3 consecutive days in a row – is this true?

We are unaware of any Federal law that specifically mandates the number of consecutive days that a bank or credit union must remain open for business. It is wise to review the question with your legal team, compliance, or your state trade association to better understand what the law requires in your jurisdiction. Certain states, including Texas, have codified the matter.

The Texas Finance Code Title 3. Financial Institutions and Businesses, Section 37.002 (c) stipulates that “An office or operation may not remain closed for more than three consecutive days, excluding days on which the bank is customarily closed, without the banking commissioner’s approval.”

Banks are critically important to the welfare of the United States. The financial services sector is one of the 16 critical infrastructure sectors identified by the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) whose assets, systems, and networks are considered so vital to the United States that their incapacitation or destruction would place the country at significant risk. Therefore, it is imperative that banks remain open to (a) allow customers to deposit funds and make payments to other parties, (b) provide credit and liquidity to customers, (c) invest funds, and (d) transfer financial risks between customers.

“Banking Holidays” during the Great Depression. Approximately 9,000 financial institutions failed between 1930 and 1933. The banks that failed obliterated people’s life savings, driving fear throughout the country as people rushed to banks and withdrew their money. By February 1933, First National and Guardian National, two large banks in Detroit, were on the verge of disaster. Michigan Governor William Comstock responded by declaring a general banking holiday that temporarily closed banks across the state for eight days. However, the bank holiday did not end after eight days, nor was the problem confined to Michigan. Within weeks, banks in every state were either closed or operating under restrictions. The banking crisis did not end until the federal government enacted a number of emergency measures, including the Emergency Banking Act (EBA) in March 1933.

This Q&A originally appeared in Bankers' Hotline. For more information, sample issues, and to subscribe, click here or email

First published on 11/28/2021

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