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Your Insured Deposits

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Ownership Categories
Certain Retirement Accounts

A retirement account is insured under the Certain Retirement Accounts ownership category only if the account qualifies as one of the following:

  • Individual Retirement Account (IRA) including:
    • Traditional IRA
    • Roth IRA
    • Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) IRA
    • Savings Incentive Match Plans for Employees (SIMPLE) IRA
  • Self-directed defined contribution plan account includes:
    • Self-directed 401(k) plan
    • Self-directed SIMPLE IRA held in the form of a 401(k) plan
    • Self-directed defined contribution profit-sharing plan
  • Self-directed Keogh plan account (or H.R.10 plan account) designed for self-employed individuals
  • Section 457 deferred compensation plan account, such as an eligible deferred compensation plan provided by state and local governments regardless of whether the plan is self-directed

The FDIC adds together all retirement accounts listed above owned by the same person at the same insured bank and insures the total amount up to $250,000.

The FDIC defines the term “self-directed” to mean that plan participants have the right to direct how the money is invested, including the ability to direct that deposits be placed at an FDIC-insured bank.

The FDIC will consider an account to be self-directed if the participant of the retirement plan has the right to choose a particular bank’s deposit accounts as an investment option. For example:

  • If a plan has deposit accounts at a particular insured bank as its default investment option, then the FDIC would deem the plan to be self-directed for insurance coverage purposes because, by inaction, the participant has directed the placement of such deposits
  • If a plan consists only of a single employer/employee, and the employer establishes the plan with a single investment option of deposit accounts at a particular insured bank, then the plan would be considered self-directed for insurance coverage purposes
  • If a plan’s only investment vehicle is the deposit accounts of a particular bank, so that participants have no choice of investments, then the plan would not be deemed self-directed for insurance coverage purposes

Example 2
Certain Retirement Accounts
Bob Johnsonís Roth IRA
$ 110,000
Bob Johnsonís IRA
Amount Insured
Amount Uninsured
$             0

Bob Johnson has two different types of retirement accounts that qualify as Certain Retirement Accounts at the same insured bank. The FDIC adds together the deposits in both accounts, which equal $185,000. Since Bob’s total in all certain retirement accounts at the same bank is less than $250,000, his IRA deposits are fully insured.

The following types of deposits do not qualify as Certain Retirement Accounts:
  • Deposit accounts established under section 403(b) of the Internal Revenue Code (annuity contracts for certain employees of public schools, tax-exempt organizations and ministers), which are insured as Employee Benefit Plan accounts
  • Defined-benefit plan deposits (plans for which the benefits are determined by an employee’s compensation, years of service and age), which are insured as Employee Benefit Plan accounts
  • Defined contribution plans that are not self-directed, which are insured as Employee Benefit Plan Accounts
  • Coverdell Education Savings Accounts (formerly known as Education IRAs), Health Savings Accounts or Medical Savings Accounts (see the Q&A section for guidance on the deposit insurance coverage)


While some self-directed retirement accounts, like IRAs, permit the owner to name one or more beneficiaries, the existence of beneficiaries does not increase the available insurance coverage.

Last Updated 08/22/2011 Customer Assistance Online Form