Ask The Experts: Can My Bank Refuse to Get Rid of My Overdraft Protection?

My bank is refusing to remove the "courtesy" overdraft service from my checking account. Can they do that? --Heidi, NC

Heidi, it looks like you actually have overdraft protection that's being somewhat forced upon you and positioned as if they are doing you a favor. The answer is yes, they can require that you have overdraft protection. Some banks will do this if you've bounced checks in the past, some will do it just to be overly cautious. If I can make a suggestion please: If the overdraft protection is free, and it normally is, I'd suggest that you leave it in place and forget about it.

Overdraft protection is a very nice little insurance policy against you bouncing checks, which can bleed over into your credit reports and scores. And, if you're lucky, it will show up as an unused installment loan in good standing on your credit reports, a nice little bonus for your credit rating.


John Ulzheimer is a nationally recognized credit expert, president of Consumer Education for and contributor to On The Money. Learn more about him at CreditExpertWitness.comor email him your question here.