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In the unlikely event that a financial institution fails in Canada, what is covered by the Canadian Deposit Insurance Corporation? What is the limit of coverage?

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CDIC covers deposits at financial institutions...typically banks and trust companies...insurance companies and co-ops have their own version of it. The limit is $100,000 per account. This can be in things like bank accounts, GICs, term deposits, etc.
Terms of up to 5 years are covered. You can have more than one account at an institution and have them both insured. For example, an open or non-registerd account is insured separately from a RRSP account, and if you have a joint account, that is also separate. In addition to the above, you would be separately insured if you had deposits at different institutions, for example, 2 different banks.

  • Welcome Joanna! Does President's Choice Financial and CIBC count as different banks? PCF services are provided by CIBC. – Zephyr Dec 20 '09 at 5:44
  • A clarification: I believe the limit is per type of account in the name of one depositor, not just per account. So 2 plain bank accounts (whether chequing or savings) in the same person's name would together qualify for $100,000 protection, not separately. And as Joanna has mentioned, RRSPs and joint accounts qualify as separate types of accounts with their own separate protection. – Chris W. Rea Dec 20 '09 at 14:11
  • Zephyr, to answer your question: cibc.com/ca/cibc-and-you/to-our-customers/dep-reg-info.html I think the answer used to be "different banks" (see note at that page 'Products formerly issued by Amicus Bank') but now the PCF products appear to be offered by CIBC directly. Amicus bank apparently underwent voluntarily dissolution; see gazette.gc.ca/archives/p1/2005/2005-09-03/html/…. – Chris W. Rea Dec 20 '09 at 14:15
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The CDIC provides an insurance cap of $100,000 per depositor within each member institution. If you have two accounts in your name at the same institution or at different branches of the same institution, these accounts together are only insured up to $100,000. For example, if you have two accounts, both in only your name, at the same bank, with a total deposit value of $110,000, you're only insured up to $100,000 on those deposits, even though you have two accounts.

Investopedia describes the six categories of accounts that the CDIC uses. Each of these account types is protected by a separate, $100,000 cap.

  1. Single accounts under one name (this is the category I describe above)
  2. Joint savings
  3. Savings held in trust for another person
  4. Savings held in registered retirement savings plans (RRSPs)
  5. Savings held in registered retirement income funds (RRIFs)
  6. Savings used to pay realty tax on mortgage payments

Joint accounts

Joint accounts are insured separately from each account holder's personal account. For example, Tom and Tara have a joint account worth $100,000, and Tara also has an account in only her name with a balance of $50,000. In the event of bank failure, Tara would receive $50,000 from the account in her name, and the couple would receive $100,000 from the joint account.

Trust Savings

Deposits that are held in trust for another person are insured independently of any additional accounts in the name of either the trustee or beneficiary. So, if Tom and Tara also have a $40,000 term deposit held in trust for their daughter Tina, CDIC would pay another $40,000 in addition to the $150,000 for their other accounts.

Registered Plans

Registered plans include deposit investments like RRSPs and RRIFs. Not all registered plans are eligible. Investments must mature in no more than five years, and mutual funds are not covered.

Mortgage Tax Payment Accounts

Mortgage tax payment accounts are accounts that depositors use to pay realty taxes toward mortgage properties held at a CDIC institution. As with the other categories, funds in these accounts are insured separately from other savings.

  • Thanks. So if I had 100k in one bank and 5k in another bank and both banks go under, I am insured for 105k, not 100k. Because you said it is per member institution – Victor123 Aug 18 '13 at 22:16
  • @Kaushik Yes, assuming a) your accounts are at different banks, not just different branches of the same bank, and b) both banks are member institutions. – John Bensin Aug 18 '13 at 22:25

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