WASHINGTON (3/2/10)—As of Feb. 27, the Federal Reserve Board consolidated all its check-processing operations into Cleveland, Ohio. This action eliminates all “nonlocal checks” under Regulation CC, which implements the Expedited Funds Availability Act. Reg CC governs when credit unions must make funds available that are deposited into share draft/checking accounts and what disclosure they must make about their check-hold policies. “All credit unions need to review their current Reg CC disclosures immediately and send out any necessary changes by March 29,” explains Mike McLain, CUNA’s assistant general counsel. “When Reg CC was first adopted more than 20 years ago, the Fed had 45 check processing regions -- today, it has one. “Credit unions have been adjusting their policies as ‘nonlocal checks’ have shrunk, but now is the time to make sure your account-opening disclosures are up-to-date, existing accountholders have current availability information, and lobby signs are correct.” March 29 is a magic date, McLain says, because Regulation CC says that depository institutions have to provide notice within 30 days after funds availability improves. Depending on how individual credit unions’ policies are structured and their disclosures written, they may have to send out a change notice to their membership. With the elimination of “nonlocal checks,” the fifth-business-day availability rule now only covers cash and checks deposited into ATMs not owned by the credit union. Next-day availability rules remain unchanged, as do the rules applicable to government checks and cashier, teller’s and certified checks. However, all other “local” checks are now generally subject to second-business-day availability, unless the credit union imposes one of six exceptions still allowed under Regulation CC. “To help credit unions understand the rules, CUNA has put together ‘Regulation CC: A Refresher,’” noted McLain. “It highlights what has changed and reminds credit unions what they should review right now in their Reg CC compliance programs. “ Our refresher also includes answers to 20 questions from a recent audio-conference CUNA sponsored, and a link to our updated summary of Reg CC requirements in CUNA’s eGuide to Federal Laws and Regulations. “And the Massachusetts CU League has been kind enough to share with everyone a great two-page chart it put together to summarize what maximum holds apply to what kinds of deposits.” Use the resource links below for more information.