FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- Q. What is the difference between a Co Operative and a bank?
- A co-operative is a voluntary group of people who come together for self and mutual help while a bank is profit oriented.
- Q. What is a Co Op?
- A co-operative (also Co-Operative; often referred to as a co op) is a business organization owned and operated by a group of individuals for their mutual benefit. Co Operatives are defined as autonomous associations of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social and cultural needs and aspirations through jointly owned and democratically controlled enterprises. A Co Operative may also be defined as a business owned and controlled equally by the people who use its services or by the people who work there.
- Q. What are equity shares?
- To become a member of the Credit Union, one must purchase 20 shares. These shares can only be withdrawn when the individual no longer wishes to be a member of the Credit Union.
- Q. What is the difference between withdrawable shares and deposits?
- Withdrawable shares are usually the cash security for a loan. Deposits are withdrawable any time, whether there is a loan or not.
- Q. Why choose the Credit Union over a bank?
- The Credit Union allows an individual the opportunity to become the owner of a democratically controlled financial institution. Since the credit union does not have profit maximization motive, most of the revenue it generates is paid back to the member’s income.
- Q. Do I have access to my shares when there is no loan on my account?
- Q. How often is interest paid to my account?
- Interest is paid as follows:
▪ Deposits and Withdrawable shares – twice per annum at a rate of no less than 3%
▪ Dividends on Equity shares – Once per annum
▪ Patronage refund on loan interest – Once per annum
- Q. Why are persons from certain parts of the island not allowed to join this credit union?
- The credit union bylaws (a set of rules that govern the operations of the credit union) define persons who are eligible for membership. Only persons that fall within the specified area of operations qualify for membership.
- Q. is it more profitable to save on shares rather than fixed deposits?
- It is based on your rate of savings. The interest on fixed deposits is generally higher. However, when money is saved on shares it can be claimed as a tax deduction at the end of the financial year. This is not so for fixed deposits.
- Q. What is the difference between a beneficiary and someone who is authorized to withdraw?
- A beneficiary is the person who inherits your estate after you have passed. Someone who is authorized to withdraw is only allowed to transact business on your behalf during your lifetime.
- Q. Who is a member of the credit union and what is the difference between a member and a depositor?
- A member of the credit Union is someone who has met the requirements for membership and has purchased at least 20 equity shares from the Credit Union while a depositor does not or cannot own equity shares. Examples of depositors are small business owners who open an account for their business and children’s accounts.
- Q. What are the requirements for getting a loan at the Credit Union?
- There are different requirements for the different loans. For loan information one should enquire at the Credit Union.
- Q. What is the minimum amount of money I can have on my account?
- For members: $100.00 equity shares and for Depositors: $5.00
- Q. What is a patronage refund?
- A patronage refund is a percentage of the annual loan interest payments refunded to the member.