CONSUMER SERVICES HELPLINE
Washington Mutual (WaMu), one of Florida’s 10 largest banks,
was taken over by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)
Thursday night. All of WaMu’s branches, deposits and assets were
immediately sold to JPMorgan Chase, providing customers full access to
their accounts and the ability to continue banking as usual.
It is important for Floridians banking with WaMu to understand that due
to the quick sale to JPMorgan Chase, bank branches will be open and
business will continue as normal. WaMu customers with questions can
visit their local branch, call the customer service division at
1-800-788-7000, or call the FDIC Call Center at 1-877-275-3342 for more
WaMu customers should hear from JPMorgan Chase soon, as happens under
normal circumstances when one bank buys another. All deposit accounts,
including savings, checking, money market, and retirement accounts and
certificates of deposit, have become part of JPMorgan Chase Bank,
although the signs may not change for awhile.
Direct deposits such as payroll or Social Security checks will continue
as normal, as will use of your debit card. WaMu customers can still use
the checks you have now, and checks already written will be honored
provided that you have sufficient funds in the account. Loan payment
amounts and due dates will not change, automatic payments will continue
as usual and online banking remains available.
The crisis on Wall Street and in the financial markets is undoubtedly
unsettling for Floridians who bank with WaMu. It also raises questions
for all of us about what happens when a bank fails and what our
individual responsibilities are as customers.
Here are some important things you need to know to weather a bank
Be sure your accounts do not exceed FDIC insurance limits. The
FDIC insures deposits titled in your name up to $100,000 in any one
bank. Deposit accounts include checking and savings accounts, money
market accounts and Certificates of Deposit (or CDs). For more
information on FDIC insurance coverage of your deposits, visit the
call them at 866-806-5919.
IRA accounts are also insured by the FDIC for up to $250,000. If
you have more than one IRA, talk to your banker about ways to
maximize the available FDIC insurance.
If your bank is taken over, you do NOT have to fill out any
paperwork for the FDIC for your account to receive their protection.
Floridians banking with WaMu do not have to do anything to continue
their FDIC protection.
If you have a mortgage or other loan with a bank that is taken
over by the FDIC, your loan terms will remain the same. Make your
loan payments to the same address – and be sure they are on time!
Loan payments should continue to go to the same address unless
notified properly by the FDIC to send payments to a new address.
Your loan may be transferred to a different lender, but the terms
would remain the same.
Beware of scams and the opportunity for identity theft. Talk
with your bank if anything seems out of the ordinary or suspicious.
The FDIC and your bank WILL NOT call or email you to verify account
numbers, personal information including social security numbers.
If you have additional questions, please feel free to contact the
Department of Financial Services Consumer Help line at 1-877-MY-FL-CFO.
Or visit our Web site at