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Sec. 229.15 - General disclosure requirements.

(a) Form of disclosures. A bank shall make the disclosures required by this subpart clearly and conspicuously in writing. Disclosures, other than those posted at locations where employees accept consumer deposits and ATMs and the notice on preprinted deposit slips, must be in a form that the customer may keep. The disclosures shall be grouped together and shall not contain any information not related to the disclosures required by this subpart. If contained in a document that sets forth other account terms, the disclosures shall be highlighted within the document by, for example, use of a separate heading.

Official Interpretation

IX. Section 229.15 General Disclosure Requirements

A. 229.15(a) Form of Disclosures

1. This paragraph sets forth the general requirements for the disclosures required under Subpart B. All of the disclosures must be given in a clear and conspicuous manner, must be in writing, and, in most cases, must be in a form the customer may keep. A disclosure is in a form that the customer may keep if, for example, it can be downloaded or printed. For a customer that is not a consumer, a depositary bank satisfies the written-disclosure requirement by sending an electronic disclosure that displays the text and is in a form that the customer may keep, if the customer agrees to such means of disclosure. For a customer who is a consumer, a depositary bank satisfies the written-notice requirement by sending an electronic notice in compliance with the requirements of the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (12 U.S.C. 7001 et seq.), which include obtaining the consumer's affirmative consent to such means of notice. Disclosures posted at locations where employees accept consumer deposits, at ATMs, and on preprinted deposit slips need not be in a form that the customer may keep. Appendix C of the regulation contains model forms, clauses, and notices to assist banks in preparing disclosures.

2. Disclosures concerning availability must be grouped together and may not contain any information that is not related to the disclosures required by this subpart. Therefore, banks may not intersperse the required disclosures with other account disclosures, and may not include other account information that is not related to their availability policy within the text of the required disclosures. Banks may, however, include information that is related to their availability policies. For example, a bank may inform its customers that, even when the bank has already made funds available for withdrawal, the customer is responsible for any problem with the deposit, such as the return of a deposited check.

3. The regulation does not require that the disclosures be segregated from other account terms and conditions. For example, banks may include the disclosure of their specific availability policy in a booklet or pamphlet that sets out all of the terms and conditions of the bank's accounts. The required disclosures must, however, be grouped together and highlighted or identified in some manner, for example, by use of a separate heading for the disclosures, such as “When Deposits are Available for Withdrawal.”

4. A bank may, by agreement or at the consumer's request, provide any disclosure or notice required by subpart B in a language other than English, provided that the bank makes a complete disclosure available in English at the customer's request.

(b) Uniform reference to day of availability. In its disclosure, a bank shall describe funds as being available for withdrawal on "the __________ business day after" the day of deposit. In this calculation, the first business day is the business day following the banking day the deposit was received, and the last business day is the day on which the funds are made available.

Official Interpretation

B. 229.15(b) Uniform Reference to Day of Availability

1. This paragraph requires banks to disclose in a uniform manner when deposited funds will be available for withdrawal. Banks must disclose when deposited funds are available for withdrawal by stating the business day on which the customer may begin to withdraw funds. The business day funds will be available must be disclosed as “the ________ business day after” the day of deposit, or substantially similar language. The business day of availability is determined by counting the number of business days starting with the business day following the banking day on which the deposit is received, as determined under §229.19(a), and ending with the business day on which the customer may begin to withdraw funds. For example, a bank that imposes delays of four intervening business days for nonlocal checks must describe those checks as being available on “the fifth business day after” the day of the deposit.

(c) Multiple accounts and multiple account holders. A bank need not give multiple disclosures to a customer that holds multiple accounts if the accounts are subject to the same availability policies. Similarly, a bank need not give separate disclosures to each customer on a jointly held account.

Official Interpretation

C. 229.15(c) Multiple Accounts and Multiple Account Holders

1. This paragraph clarifies that banks need not provide multiple disclosures under the regulation. A single disclosure to a customer that holds multiple accounts, or a single disclosure to one of the account holders of a jointly held account, satisfies the disclosure requirements of the regulation.

(d) Dormant or inactive accounts. A bank need not give availability disclosures to a customer that holds a dormant or inactive account.

Official Interpretation

D. 229.15(d) Dormant or Inactive Accounts

1. This paragraph makes clear that banks need not provide disclosure of their specific availability policies to customers that hold accounts that are either dormant or inactive. The determination that certain accounts are dormant or inactive must be made by the bank. If a bank considers an account dormant or inactive for purposes other than this regulation and no longer provides statements and other mailings to an account for this reason, such an account is considered dormant or inactive for purposes of this regulation.

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