Letter offers clarity on impact of credit union ‘service facility’ final rule

Ownership requirements related to shared locations are the only change made for multiple-common-bond federal credit unions adding groups or underserved areas under a new rule that took effect late last year, the institutions’ federal regulator said Friday.

In a letter to federal credit unions (FCUs), the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) said that all other requirements under its final rule on the definition of a service facility (which took effect Dec. 27, 2021) related to service facilities, eligibility of groups, and the qualification of underserved areas remain unchanged under the new rule.

The rule, the NCUA noted, amended the definition of a “service facility” for multiple-common-bond FCUs. It provides that shared locations are service facilities for additions of groups by the FCUs regardless of whether the credit union has an ownership interest in the shared branching network providing the locations.

“Shared locations, including electronic facilities offering required services such as video teller machines, are also service facilities for purposes of multiple common-bond federal credit union additions of underserved areas, regardless of whether the federal credit union has an ownership interest,” the agency noted in the letter.

NCUA letter to FCUs 22-FCU-02: Final Rule on Definition of Service Facility