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FAQs

Didn’t find the answer to your question on our pages? We’ve compiled a list of questions we’re most commonly asked by Canadians about CDIC and about our member institutions, and published them along with our answers here. Still have more questions? Contact us by telephone at 1-800-461-2342 or by email. You can also follow us on social media for regular updates and information about deposit protection.

Depositor information

CDIC coverage

CDIC information

Deposit insurance changes

Member institutions

General purpose reloadable prepaid cards

Depositor information

What is a depositor?

For the purpose of CDIC deposit insurance, the depositor may be an individual (including sole proprietorship), corporation, partnership, government, church, charity, non-profit organization, estate and trustee that has monies placed in a member institution.

Do I need to sign up for CDIC deposit insurance?

No. You do not need to sign up for deposit insurance. Coverage is free and automatic for eligible deposits in any of our member institutions. In the event of a failure, CDIC relies on the records of the failed institution to obtain your contact information and determine your deposit insurance protection.

How can I find out how much of my money is protected by CDIC?

Our Deposit Insurance Estimator can help you calculate your CDIC coverage.

If I have more than $100,000, can I keep my savings safe?

Yes. CDIC’s coverage limit applies separately to each deposit category at each member institution. This means that eligible deposits in your chequing or savings accounts – and unregistered term deposits in your name – are protected separately from those in RRSPs, TFSAs, RRIFs, and so on. Download our brochure for a visual breakdown of how this works.

Does CDIC protect deposits for sole proprietorships?

Deposits made by sole proprietorships are protected. They are not considered separate and distinct from the sole proprietor (the individual). Eligible deposits under sole proprietorships, therefore, would be combined with those of the sole proprietor in the same member institution.

I am not a Canadian citizen. Can I still benefit from CDIC protection?

Yes. The place of residence or nationality of depositors does not affect the eligibility of deposits for CDIC coverage.

CDIC coverage

Would my GIC be eligible for coverage?

Term deposits, including Guaranteed Investment Contracts (GICs), are eligible for CDIC insurance.

Are deposits held at a bank branch in Canada by a non-resident or non-Canadian citizen eligible for CDIC coverage?

The place of residence or nationality of depositors does not affect the eligibility of their deposits for CDIC coverage. Deposits by a non-resident or non-Canadian citizen are eligible for CDIC coverage if the funds are eligible deposits and if they are recorded at a branch or office of a CDIC member institution in Canada.

Are funds “in transit” still covered by CDIC? I have money at one CDIC member (ABC Trust) and I have instructed them to transfer the funds to another CDIC member (XYZ Bank) in an eligible deposit.

Yes. Funds that are “in transit” means only that your transfer instructions have not yet been fully carried out. At all times, either ABC Trust or XYZ Bank would be liable to you for the monies. The liability of XYZ Bank would commence on its receipt of the monies from ABC Trust, and conversely, until XYZ Bank receives the monies, ABC Trust would remain liable for them.

Are market-linked GICs eligible for deposit insurance?

Eligible deposits include savings accounts, chequing accounts, GICs or other term deposits, money orders, certified cheques, and bank drafts issued by CDIC members.

Market-linked or index-linked deposits are eligible for CDIC coverage since they are term deposits whose returns are linked to a variation in a stock exchange index. They are neither an insurance contract nor a security. They are deposits redeemable at maturity.

CDIC information

How is CDIC funded?

CDIC does not receive tax dollars or public funds to operate. CDIC is fully funded by premiums paid by our member institutions.

Can CDIC go bankrupt?

CDIC’s role is vital to the stability of the Canadian financial system and to the flow of financial services. The CDIC Act provides that CDIC cannot be placed into bankruptcy. CDIC is a Crown corporation and is backed by the Government of Canada.

Does CDIC cover digital currencies?

CDIC does not cover digital currencies or cryptocurrencies. Read more about what’s covered and what’s not.

Who decides what deposits are covered or not?

The terms and conditions of CDIC deposit protection are set out in the CDIC Act as approved by the Parliament of Canada.

Does CDIC protect deposits in the event of fraud?

No. CDIC does not cover losses due to fraud. CDIC coverage only applies in the event of a member institution failure. To learn about protection from fraud or scams, please visit the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada.

Does CDIC cover deposits in foreign currency? What about U.S. dollars?

CDIC covers deposits in foreign currency, including U.S. dollars. Eligible deposits must be payable in Canada. Read more about what’s covered and what’s not.

Deposit insurance changes

Why has deposit insurance protection changed?

CDIC has protected Canadians’ hard-earned savings for over 50 years and these changes help further strengthen deposit protection by keeping pace with the way Canadians save their money.

What changes will take effect in each phase?

Summary of changes to deposit insurance coverage

Change to deposit protection Effective date
Expanded coverage of eligible deposits held in foreign currencies April 30, 2020
Extended coverage of eligible deposits with terms greater than 5 years April 30, 2020
Elimination of coverage for travellers’ cheques (travellers’ cheques are no longer issued by CDIC member institutions) April 30, 2020
Separate coverage for up to $100,000 in eligible deposits held under Registered Education Savings Plans (RESPs) April 30, 2022
Separate coverage for up to $100,000 in eligible deposits held under Registered Disability Savings Plans (RDSPs) April 30, 2022
Removal of separate coverage for deposits in mortgage tax accounts (these deposits will be combined with eligible deposits in other categories such as savings in one name) April 30, 2022
New requirements for deposits held in trusts, including nominee brokered deposits that enhance CDIC’s ability to extend protection to these deposits and reimburse them quickly after a CDIC member failure April 30, 2022

Why is deposit insurance changing in two phases?

The phased implementation will allow CDIC, its member institutions and other stakeholders to make the necessary procedural or operational adjustments to accommodate the changes.

What do I have to do to ensure that my money is protected with these new changes?

CDIC coverage is free and automatic, but there are a few things you can do to protect your hard-earned money:

  • Stay informed by getting familiar with the changes and by learning what is covered and what is not
  • Keep your contact information at your financial institution up-to-date so CDIC can send payment if necessary
  • Make sure your financial advisors or brokers know about CDIC’s rules for deposit protection.
  • Calculate your coverage by using CDIC’s deposit insurance calculator

Do these changes mean that there is a problem with my financial institution?

Banks in Canada are well regulated and discouraged from taking excessive risks.

These changes ensure that the deposit insurance legislative framework remains responsive to changes in Canada’s financial services sector, and continue to reflect the various deposit products and services offered by banks and used by depositors.

Phase 1 changes

What are the changes to deposit insurance that took effect on April 30, 2020?

The deposit protection changes that took effect on April 30, 2020 include the following:

  • expanded coverage to include eligible deposits held in foreign currency
  • extended coverage to include all eligible deposits with terms greater than 5 years
  • deposit insurance protection will no longer be provided for travellers’ cheques

Do the changes to protection for foreign currency deposits and deposits with terms >5yrs mean that a depositor gets an additional $100,000 in protection for each of these types of deposits?

No. These deposits will not receive separate deposit insurance protection. Instead, they will be combined with other deposits that a depositor holds in the same deposit insurance category at the same member institution. CDIC’s deposit insurance categories include:

  • deposits in one name, jointly held deposits, deposits held in trust for someone else, deposits in RRSPs, deposits in RRIFs, deposits in TFSAs and deposits in mortgage tax accounts.

So, for example, if a client holds funds in her own name in a CAD chequing account and in a USD savings account, these would be added together and CDIC would extend deposit insurance coverage up to a total of $100,000 CAD. CDIC would convert the amount in the foreign currency account to determine the amount protected.

Foreign currency

Is foreign currency a separate category of deposit insurance?

No. Foreign currency deposits do not receive separate coverage. In the event of a failure, they would be combined with other deposits in the same deposit insurance category. For example, savings in a US Dollar account would be combined with savings in a chequing account for the purposes of calculating deposit protection.

What foreign currencies are covered?

All foreign currencies are eligible for CDIC deposit protection up to a maximum of $100,000 (principal and interest combined) per depositor in each of the insured categories.

How will my foreign currency deposits be reimbursed in case of failure?

Foreign currency deposits would be converted into, and be payable in, Canadian dollars.

What conversion rate would CDIC apply on foreign currency deposits in the event of failure?

In the majority of cases, CDIC would use the conversion rates published by the Bank of Canada on the date of failure. If the Bank of Canada does not publish a rate for a particular foreign currency, then the rate would be based on whatever the rate was at the failed member institution on the date of failure.

Are my U.S. funds held at a U.S. bank covered by CDIC?

No. Foreign currency deposits at foreign financial institutions are not covered by CDIC. American currency in U.S.-based banks may be covered, however, by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). Funds held in other foreign financial institutions may be covered by that country or region’s deposit insurer, so be sure to check with them.

Term deposits

What were the changes to the coverage of term deposits?

Effective April 30, 2020, term deposits of more than five years are eligible for CDIC protection. The five-year term limit has been removed. Keep in mind that the deposits with terms of over five years would not receive separate coverage but would be combined with other deposits within the same category.

Travellers’ cheque

Why has deposit insurance protection been removed for travellers’ cheques?

CDIC protection has been removed for travellers’ cheques since CDIC member institutions no longer issue travellers’ cheques and have not done so for some time. Travellers’ cheques currently available for purchase are not issued by institutions covered by CDIC.

What should I do if I have travellers’ cheques?

As of April 30, 2020, CDIC no longer covers travellers’ cheques in the event of failure of a CDIC member institution. If you wish to redeem travellers’ cheques in your possession, you will need to contact your financial institution to determine whether they continue to be honoured.

Phase 2 changes

What changes to deposit insurance are coming into effect on April 30, 2022?

  • Separate coverage for up to $100,000 in eligible deposits held under Registered Education Savings Plans (RESPs)
  • Separate coverage for up to $100,000 in eligible deposits held under Registered Disability Savings Plans (RDSPs)
  • Removal of separate coverage for deposits in mortgage tax accounts (these deposits will be combined with eligible deposits in other categories such as savings in one name)
  • New requirements for deposits held in trusts, including nominee brokered deposits that enhance CDIC’s ability to extend protection to these deposits and reimburse them quickly after a CDIC member failure

Member institutions

What is a CDIC member institution?

CDIC member institutions include federally regulated deposit-taking institutions such as banks, trust companies, loan companies, and federal credit unions.

Can I get information about CDIC at my financial institution?

CDIC member institutions are given brochures to display in their branches, and are required by law to display the CDIC decal on the door of each retail branch and on their websites. Additional information on CDIC coverage is also available on member institution websites and mobile banking applications. Consult the display requirements.

I don’t see my financial institution’s name in CDIC’s list of member institutions. Does this mean my deposits are not protected by CDIC?

Some CDIC members have subsidiaries or trademark companies which are not distinct members, but may fall under the coverage of their parent company. Provincial credit unions are protected by the province’s deposit insurer and not by CDIC. If your financial institution isn’t on our list of member institutions, you can contact CDIC to inquire about deposit protection.

Are all subsidiaries covered by CDIC?

No. A member institution can own subsidiaries offering a wide range of financial products and services, such as investment, brokerage and insurance firms or trust and loan companies. Although they may be owned by the same group or parent company, they are not necessarily all CDIC members. You can consult the list of CDIC’s member institutions.

Can a CDIC member institution decide to cease its membership?

Yes. A member institution can apply to CDIC to cancel membership if it has ceased to take deposits.

Are credit unions and caisses populaires covered by CDIC?

Credit unions and caisses populaires are governed by provincial laws and cannot be CDIC members. They can apply to continue business as federal credit unions and will become CDIC members once the continuance receives regulatory approval.

What if I have money in a provincial credit union?

Each of Canada’s 10 provinces has a provincial deposit insurer that protects provincial credit unions.

What happens to coverage if two CDIC members merge?

If two or more CDIC member institutions amalgamate, insured deposits made at each institution before the amalgamation continue to be insured separately up to $100,000 per depositor per category, as if the institutions had not amalgamated. The amount of separate coverage is reduced by any withdrawals made from those separate deposits, or as term deposits mature (or are redeemed). Coverage with respect to any deposits made with the entity that resulted from the amalgamation depends on the aggregate volume of the deposits you made at the institutions before they amalgamated.

  • If your existing deposits (i.e., the sum of deposits you had with the entities immediately prior to the amalgamation) add up to a total of $100,000 or more, any new deposits you make at the institution after amalgamation will exceed the $100,000 maximum, so they will not be insured by CDIC.
  • If your existing deposits add up to a total of less than $100,000, any new eligible deposits you make at the amalgamated institution will be added to those previous deposits, and the total will be insured to a maximum of $100,000.

I have deposits in different branches of the same financial institution. Are they separately covered?

Deposits are not insured separately if made at different branches of the same CDIC member institution.

Are my deposits in U.S. subsidiaries of a Canadian financial institution covered by CDIC?

Deposits in U.S. subsidiaries of a Canadian financial institution are not covered by CDIC but may be covered by the U.S. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).

General purpose reloadable prepaid cards

Are general-purpose reloadable prepaid cards eligible for CDIC deposit protection?

Some, but not all, general-purpose reloadable prepaid cards are eligible for CDIC deposit protection. For example, the funds loaded to a prepaid card must be held at a CDIC member institution, the card must be registered to the cardholder, and the records of the CDIC member must show who they owe the deposit liability to.

Ask your CDIC member institution or card manager for details about whether your particular product is eligible for CDIC coverage, and the nature of the coverage offered.

If my prepaid card is eligible for deposit protection, how would CDIC calculate the amount owed in the event of failure of the CDIC member institution?

In the event of the failure and closure of a CDIC member institution, CDIC would reimburse insured deposits up to $100,000 per insured category.

Funds loaded to general-purpose reloadable prepaid cards can be held at a CDIC member institution in different ways. The way funds are held impacts how CDIC would calculate the amount owed in the event of a member’s failure.

For eligible general-purpose reloadable prepaid cards where funds loaded to the card are held with the CDIC member directly in the cardholder’s name, funds would be combined with the cardholder’s other eligible deposits held at that same member, for up to $100,000 of deposit protection, per depositor, per category.

For cards that are set up so funds loaded to the card are held with the CDIC member through the program card manager (in trust for cardholders), CDIC insures up to $100,000 for each beneficiary named in a trust, provided certain disclosure requirements are met. For more information, please visit our web section on trust deposits.

NOTE: CDIC only protects eligible deposits held at CDIC member institutions, it does not protect funds held at non-members. Deposit insurance does not provide protection if your general-purpose reloadable prepaid card is lost or stolen, subject to fraud or a cyber event.

Are prepaid gift cards or shopping mall cards eligible for CDIC coverage?

No, a credit balance on a prepaid gift or mall card is not eligible for deposit insurance.

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