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Course description

Remember all the lessons you were taught when you were growing up about what to do and what not to do? In most instances, those life lessons included clear cut explanations of the consequences of not doing as you were told. Play with matches and you might get burned. Run with scissors and you might cut yourself. Eat too much candy and you'll make yourself sick. Knowing what could go wrong helped you understand the importance of doing what was right.

Every banking employee needs that kind of "big picture" to connect the dots between what a policy or procedure says to do and why that is precisely what should be done. Lawsuits, losses, reputation damage, regulatory criticism, enforcement actions - those are just some of the banking consequences equivalent of the childhood burns, cuts, and tummy aches.

To do your job correctly, you need to understand the "if….then" reality -- what can happen if you don't do something in the proper order or at the proper time or in the way the policy or procedure says to do it.

This is a program that will be filled with "Aha!" moments where attendees will nod as they realize the firm foundations upon which banking procedures are built and connect the dots between various procedures and why they exist. Everyone who deals with bank operations should attend!

Here are just a few of the "why's" we'll touch on:

  • Why you must be kind, but noncommittal, when a customer claims a check is forged, an ACH debit is unauthorized, or an ATM withdrawal was not made by them
  • Why you can't stop payment on a cashier's check
  • Why you don't set up a joint account until you have all signatures and you have CIPed all owners
  • Why you look for red flags for identity theft
  • Why you don't allow checks payable to an entity to be cashed or deposited into an account not owned by the entity
  • Why it's a bad idea to allow someone to take a check made payable to the bank and deposit it in his account or cash it
  • Why you should not accept after-death deposits into an account that has pay on death beneficiaries
  • Why you don't give out information about an account without asking the verification questions
  • Why you don't allow babies on joint accounts
  • Why you want to ensure you have the correct documents for an account before you set it up on your system
  • Why you check IDs for safe deposit entrants
  • Why you always look at dates on checks
  • Why you can't cash checks made payable to an entity that is not your customer
  • Why you should always note on a signature card if a person is a signer by virtue of a POA
  • Why, in most instances, you cannot allow an attorney-in-fact to add himself as a joint owner to the principal's account
  • Why you want to have documentation any time a safe deposit renter takes a visitor into the safe deposit area
  • Why you have to get a TIN for an estate account
  • Why you want to carefully answer when a customer asks when funds will be available
  • Why you need to first focus on whether it is a business or consumer account before answering certain questions
  • Why you can't believe every piece of paper that purports to be a will
  • Why you need to make sure complaints are processed properly
  • Why we ask new customers so many questions
  • Why it's important for the bank to quickly learn of a customer's death


Mary Beth Guard

Mary Beth Guard currently serves as Executive Editor of, CEO of Glia Group, Inc. and Executive Editor of Since graduating from law school in 1980, Mary Beth has focused her work almost exclusively on the banking industry. Previously, Mary Beth served as EVP/General Counsel and COO for the Oklahoma Bankers Association, EVP of Specialized Services for Thomson Financial Publishing, and General Counsel for the Oklahoma State Banking Department. Mary Beth is on the advisory board for Bankers' Hotline. She has presented training programs for virtually every major national financial industry association, as well as more than a dozen state bankers associations and a host of other organizations. In addition, Mary Beth has written more than a thousand banking-related articles and is a BOL Guru.

Course curriculum

  • 1


    • Why we do it …Operations

  • 2


    • Slides

    • Questions and Answers