Sandy Spring Bank eliminates bounced check fee, lowers overdraft charges

Olney, Maryland-based Sandy Spring Bank is joining larger, national banks in making changes to some fees.

Sandy Spring Bank has eliminated entirely its insufficient funds fees, which charged customers when the bank chose not to honor a check or a debit card transaction that is more than the amount of money in the account.

It has also lowered its overdraft fees — the charges customers pay for a transaction that exceeds an account balance, but which the bank chooses to honor. The extended overdraft fees, which previously charged customers when an account was overdrawn for seven days, have been eliminated.

“We are always listening to our clients and refining and enhancing products based on their feedback,” said Jay O’Brien, executive vice president and chief banking officer for Sandy Spring Bank.

The bank will not charge a transfer fee for overdraft protection, which links a savings account to a checking account.

Banks have the right to penalize customers who overdraw their balances, but they have come under pressure from consumers’ rights groups for charging often excessive fees.

Over the course of the past year, many large, national banks have eliminated or reduced such fees, including Wells Fargo, Capital One, Truist, Bank of America and Citibank.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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