Credit Union Questions
How do I contact the Office of Credit Unions?
If you need to get in touch with the Office of Credit Unions, please give us a call on our general line, (608) 261-9543. From there we can easily connect you with any of our staff or supervisors. Email questions are also accepted through our general inbox
What information is needed for a merger?
If your credit union is contemplating a merger, please contact the Office of Credit Unions (OCU) to obtain a copy of the OCU Merger Guide. Staff from the OCU will work with you to answer your questions and provide guidance on the merger process and forms needed to complete a merger. While Chapter 186.31 of Wisconsin Statutes addresses mergers of state-chartered credit unions, credit unions must follow the requirements in National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Rule Part 708b. These requirements are incorporated into the OCU Merger Guide.
How much notice does a credit union need to provide to their members for a branch closure?
Wisconsin Statute Chapter 186 does not address branch closures, however the Office of Credit Unions recommends that a credit union provide as much notice as possible and disseminate information related to a closure by various means so member are informed of the closure and any related details. In addition, a credit union should submit a
Subsidiary Office Application for any closure.
Do credit unions need to inform the Office of Credit Unions of a change in office hours?
There is no requirement to inform the Office of Credit Unions of a change in office hours. The Office of Credit Unions recommends that you provide ample notice to the members of a change in hours. Also, please ensure that your website is updated with the new hours.
Where do we turn in the Oath of Office form?
The Oath of Office form is required under Wisconsin Statute 186.07(1). A completed form does not need to be submitted to the Office of Credit Unions. Credit unions should keep the signed form with other credit union records. This form may be asked to review by an examiner during an examination.
How do we change our bylaws?
Amendments to the bylaws require approval from the Office of Credit Unions per Wisconsin Statute 186.02 (4) (b). A credit union must submit a request by email or letter for a bylaw change. Once approved, a bylaw amendment form will be sent to the credit union for completion along with a $50 invoice. After the form is signed and returned to the Office of Credit Unions, the director will sign and a copy will be returned to the credit union. After the director has signed, the amendment(s) will then be effective.
How can we get help with Data Exchange Application (DEXA)?
Information regarding DEXA can be found on the NCUA DEXA
website. For technical assistance, contact the NCUA's OneStop Help Desk at
What if we get scheduled for an exam and there is a conflict?
Please contact the Office of Credit Unions as soon as possible if there is a conflict. Staff will do their best to reschedule an exam if possible. There are instances when an exam cannot be rescheduled and the Office of Credit Unions will work with management to come up with a plan that is satisfactory to both the credit union and the Office of Credit Unions.
Our credit union is struggling, where can we go for help?
Please contact the Office of Credit Unions and ask to speak to your Financial Examiner- Supervisor. The Office of Credit Unions is committed to working with credit unions to resolve any issues to ensure the credit union remains viable for the members.
What are the requirements to establish a member business lending program?
Wisconsin state-chartered credit unions must follow the requirements in Wisconsin Administrative Code DFI-CU 72, Member Business Loans. If you have questions, please also contact the Office of Credit Unions and ask to speak with your Financial Examiner- Supervisor.
What is needed for subordinated debt?
Subordinated debt is a permissible activity for certain credit unions. NCUA Rule 702, subpart D must be followed for Subordinated Debt, Grandfathered Secondary Capital and Regulatory Capital. Please contact the Office of Credit Unions for additional information and discussion on the applicability and requirements to utilize subordinated debt.
How can we get approval for an investment that is not explicitly permissible in Wisconsin statute or administrative rules?
Per Wisconsin Statute 186.11 (1) (e), the Office of Credit Unions may approve "other investment instruments". A written request for investment authority should be sent to the Office of Credit Unions with any applicable information to support the request. Please contact the Office of Credit Unions with specific questions.
How can I find the registered agent for a credit union?
The Office of Credit Unions does not maintain a list of registered agents. Please contact the credit union for information on a registered agent.
What is a credit union?
A credit union is cooperative, nonprofit, incorporated to encourage thrift amount its members and create a source of credit at a fair and reasonable cost.
How do I join a credit union?
You can call the Wisconsin Credit Union League at (800) 242-0833 or the Office of Credit Unions at (608) 261-9543. Either agency can give you a list of credit unions in your area.
Are my accounts fully insured at a credit union?
Credit unions cannot do business in Wisconsin unless their accounts are insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA). The accounts are insured up to $250,000.
How many members should there be to operate a successful credit union?
A credit union should have anywhere from 400-500 potential members in order to have adequate resources to stay in business.
Who do I call when I think I want to charter a new credit union?
Contact the Department of Financial Institutions, Office of Credit Unions at (608) 261-9543 to find out the proper steps and important issues of opening a credit union. Generally, the first step will be determining the membership of your credit union. The second step involves a survey of interested parties (potential members). However, it is best to proceed with the Department of Financial Institutions, Office of Credit Unions' assistance.
What are the benefits of a state charter?
A state charter gives you access to the Office of Credit Unions right here in your own state. If you have questions or need any assistance, Department of Financial Institutions, Office of Credit Unions is easily reached. You can call (608) 261-9543, or visit our website.
What are fields of membership (FOM)?
Fields of membership are the groups of people that fill the necessary requirements to be in a particular credit union. Membership in a credit union is limited to people having a common bond, like their occupation or the county they live in.
How often should membership meetings be held?
Credit unions are required to have annual membership meetings. There should be briefings from the officers and committee chairs, and any problems that may arisen since the last meeting should be discussed. Credit union members vote for their Board of Directors at the annual meeting.
How often are the board and committees of a credit union required to meet?
The Board of Directors should meet on a monthly basis. Committees meet with a frequency based on its focus and workload.
Can board and committee members be compensated?
Because a credit union is a nonprofit organization, there is no compensation for the board or committee members. However, committee members can receive compensation for duties above and beyond what is expected of them. Credit unions can reimburse directors for out-of-pocket expenses related to attendance at board meetings.
How is the dividend rate on regular shares determined?
According to the law, dividends are only paid out of net earnings, after provisions for required reserves have been made. The Board of Directors decides on the most affordable rate.
Who do I contact if I have a complaint about a credit union?
If you have a complaint regarding a federally chartered credit union, please visit the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Consumer Assistance Center website or call (800) 755-1030. If your inquiry relates to a state- chartered credit union, please visit our File a Credit Union Complaint page or call (608) 261-9543.
What can the Office of Credit Unions do if a credit union violates a statute?
Wisconsin Statute 186 and various Administrative Rules govern credit unions in Wisconsin. Office of Credit Union staff will determine the appropriate course of action regarding statutes or administrative rule violations.
Phone: (608) 261-9543
Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions
Office of Credit Unions
PO Box 14137
Madison, WI 53708-0137
Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions
Office of Credit Unions
4822 Madison Yards Way, North Tower
Madison, WI 53705