The National Credit Union Association (NCUA) is the federal entity with oversight over credit unions, and is responsible for the approval of credit union charters. Prospective federal credit unions (PFCUs), upon submission of their initial proposal, recieve support through the application process from the NCUA, including mentorship connections and direct support throughout the process. The NCUA advises organizers & subscribers to anticipate one to three years to complete the charter approval process.

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Initial Proposal

To complete the initial proposal, it is necessary to:

  1. Identify the appropriate range of coalition nonprofit partner(s) who are interested offering financial services to their members, and partnering the credit union to be included in the proposal for the field-of-membership.
  2. Identify the requisite funding to sustain organizing operations to coordinate the credit union.

Subscriber, Member, & Support Organizing

  1. Identification and subsequent NCUA approval of seven founding members (“subscribers”) for the PFCU.
  2. Production of an online and paper survey to the proposed membership, and analysis of the results for market research.
  3. Identification and procurement of relevant resources for the credit union’s operation, including:
    • Mentorship,
    • Donor support for equity and operating costs,
    • Facilities,
    • Equipment,
    • Software
    • Vendor and consulting resources.

Final Charter Proposal

  1. The production of a final business proposal based on the findings of the membership survey and outcomes of donor support engagement, including:
    • Financial projections
    • Marketing plans
    • Bylaws
    • Requisite compliance policies.
  2. The identification, and NCUA approval, of a board of directors for the credit union’s operations.
  3. The establishment of procedures to elect a member supervisory committee and credit committee.

Charter Approval

  1. The NCUA issues a charter approval – or – provides recommendations and feedback which may require additional response on the part of the organizer, subscribers, and interested parties, prior to approval.
  2. After charter approval, the credit union may commence operations and begin offering its services to the community.