Same Bear. Bigger Den.
Change is in the Bear. As you’ve probably heard, our big change at Bear State is that we’re merging with Arvest Bank pending regulatory approval.
Arvest is a lot like Bear State. We’re both Arkansas-chartered banks that invest heavily in the communities we’re privileged to serve. That’s what good community bankers do.
What does this mean for you? This first Q&A should answer some of your more pressing questions. We’ll be the first to admit that we don’t have all the answers today. We don’t even know all the questions yet. But not to worry, as we’ll be here with you through the transition and beyond. After all, Bears are fiercely loyal and adaptable!
You’ve Got Questions, We’ve Got Answers!
Does this mean I have to move my bank account?
No. We would love to keep you as our customer and no action is required from you at this point. In the event we do need you do something, you will be notified of exactly what to do and when to do it.
Will my account type change? Or will I be charged a monthly fee?
We don’t know any of those details yet, however we do know that you will be notified of any changes, adjustments or upgrades to your accounts before they take place.
Will my checks, debit card, and credit card still work?
Yes! Your checks, debit card, and credit card will continue to work.
Why is Bear State joining forces with Arvest?
We believe this merger is in the best interest of all of our shareholders, our customers and our team members.
When will Bear State Bank officially become Arvest Bank?
You will not notice any immediate changes, and both banks will continue to conduct business as usual. At a later date, Bear State Bank’s branding will change to Arvest Bank, with the full conversion of systems expected to occur in 2018.
What will happen to our local Bear State branch?
A key reason Arvest was interested in Bear State was to expand their presence into new markets and within existing markets. Arvest, just as Bear State has done, is constantly evaluating all branch locations and will make a determination in the future. In some cases, there are Arvest Bank locations close to Bear State Bank locations, which may lead to some closures over time, but none of that has been determined at this point.
If I have accounts at both Arvest & Bear State Bank currently, how does that affect my FDIC insurance coverage?
Special FDIC insurance rule protects customers with deposits over the $250,000 limit for at least six months after a merger. First, remember that if the combined balance of all of your deposits at the surviving bank is less than $250,000, you have nothing to worry about. Your money would be fully insured. And even if the combined total exceeds $250,000, there’s no reason to immediately withdraw money or restructure accounts. That’s because the FDIC has a special rule that says when two banks merge, a customer’s deposits will be considered to be separately insured — as if the two banks are still operating separately — for at least six months and possibly longer for certificates of deposit (CDs). The six-month rule is intended to allow depositors time to review their deposit insurance coverage, so they don’t have to rush to the bank after a merger to withdraw amounts over $250,000 from the combined balance.
And with a CD, the FDIC allows the separate deposit insurance coverage to continue until the CD matures, so that the depositor doesn’t have to take a penalty for an early withdrawal. It’s only when the CD matures — perhaps years into the future —that the depositor may need to consider moving the excess above $250,000 to another FDIC-insured bank to continue to be fully insured.