What is overdraft protection and NSF?

If you don’t have enough money in your account to cover a check, debit card purchase, recurring debit card or ACH transaction, your financial institution can either reject the transaction or cover it for you. When they cover or protect you from overdrawn accounts, it’s called “overdraft protection”. This can sometimes be embarrassing and expensive because most financial institutions charge a fee. In the case of a bounced check, the check recipient may also charge a fee.


There are three ways to manage transactions when there are insufficient funds:

Reject the transaction – The financial institution can simply decline the transaction or send back a check you wrote. Note that the check or ACH can be re-submitted, and it will only process when you have enough money in your account. Many financial institutions charge a non-sufficient funds (NSF) fee for rejected items, but Stanford FCU does not.

Account-to-account transfer – You can link your other accounts at the same financial institution to automatically transfer money into your account to cover a transaction when there isn’t enough money. At Stanford FCU you can set up your savings, money market or credit card to cover checks and ACH items. Most banks charge for these automatic account-to-account transfers (and for cash advance fees if you link to a credit card), but Stanford FCU does not and never has.

Courtesy Pay – You can opt into allowing your financial institution to cover transactions when you don’t have enough money, and they will charge a fee for each transaction. At Stanford FCU, Courtesy Pay will cover check, debit card, and ACH transactions. Courtesy Pay is free for transactions under $10, and will cover up to four transactions per day with a Premium OD/Courtesy Pay fee. Our fees are listed on our Fee Schedule


Avoid rejected transactions with overdraft protection!

Call 888.723.7328 or send a secure Message through Online Banking or the mobile app ( App Store | Google Play ) to set up account-to-account transfers and opt into Courtesy Pay to protect yourself if your account goes negative.

Contact us for personalized assistance

Icon Browsers

Secure Message

Already a member? Send us a secure Message through Online or Mobile Banking. Just Login with your existing Login ID and Password.

Live Chat


Monday – Friday:
9 AM – 5 PM PT
Saturday: 10 AM – 3 PM PT
Sunday: Closed

Icon Desktop Computer

Virtual Branch

Drop in during business hours or schedule an appointment to meet on Zoom
View options

The owner of this website has made a commitment to accessibility and inclusion, please report any problems that you encounter using the contact form on this website. This site uses the WP ADA Compliance Check plugin to enhance accessibility.