Monthly Archives: September 2014

Concealed Carry Law and Banking

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The concealed carry law and banking in Illinois is several months old and banks are working to figure out if they will allow people to carry firearms when they come in.
The Bloomington Pantagraph reports that the Illinois Bankers Association is fielding questions from banks around the state. Some banks have put up small signs that show a handgun with a red slash through it to remind customers that guns are not allowed. Meanwhile other banks have not put the signs up.

Under the law that made Illinois the last state in the nation to allow concealed weapons, firearms are prohibited in places such as schools, hospitals and public parks. But the law doesn’t cover banks, meaning they have to decide for themselves whether or not to allow guns.

Following the state’s implementation of its court-mandated concealed carry law last year, banks were not specifically listed as gun-free zones where carry was arbitrarily denied. This has left these private businesses with a choice of allowing permit holders or posting required signage to forbid carry inside its doors.

The South Porte Bank in Marion not only allows legally armed patrons but also authorizes bank employees to carry concealed handguns at work. In doing so, they have even hung signs on the institution’s entrances that proudly state, “This property protected by Smith and Wesson.” Bank employees are reportedly pleased with the policy.

According to the Community Bankers Association of Illinois, more than 100 CBAI member banks have ordered the state-standard 4×6 inch signs to prohibit concealed carry at their institutions. The association offers the signs free to its members and so far has distributed nearly 400.

The Illinois Bankers Association has given its members extensive guidance on the intricacies of the state’s new gun right’s expansion and how it affects bankers. The group contends that, while carrying inside bank buildings can be regulated by owners and leasers, regulating guns in parking lots and in drive-thru tellers are less clear.


How Does the Bank Approval Process Work if You Have Bad Credit?


How does the bank approval process work if you have bad credit? If you have bad credit, you can be denied a checking or even savings account at certain banks.  But banking site My Bank Tracker explains that the rejection doesn’t stem directly from your credit report but from something called a ChexSystems report.

When you apply for an account, here’s how the bank approval process usually works, according to the site:

“In a typical account application process, the bank uses your name and Social Security number to conduct a routine financial background check. The very first step in this background check is usually taking a look at your ChexSystems report. The information included as part of the ChexSystems report reveals any bad consumer banking history such as outstanding overdrafts or bad checks you have written. Other information reported includes security alerts or freezes.”

More than 80 percent of commercial banks and credit unions in the U.S. have access to this report. And almost all of those that have access will pull it, My Bank Tracker says. According to Credit Karma and Bargaineering, the ChexSystems report can include:

  • Bounced checks
  • The number of financial institution inquiries
  • How many checks you’ve ordered
  • Instances of check fraud and identity theft/fraud
  • Unpaid negative balances
  • Excessive withdrawals

There’s a good chance a bank will reject your application if there are negative hits that are recent, outstanding or seem to reflect bad financial habits. Money for 20s says that most banks won’t let you open an account until these hits are cleared from the report.

According to, most banks don’t check your regular credit reports, but that’s not to say it doesn’t happen, too. My Bank Tracker explains:

“Depending on the financial institution, a credit check may or may not be used to approve your application. Again, any delinquencies and red flags will show the bank that you are unable to manage money responsibly.”

Now that you know how the approval process works, the next step is getting your hands on that elusive ChexSystems report.

Check Your ChexSystems Report

Ordering your report is pretty straightforward, according to Bargaineering. You can request it here, and you’ll need to be ready with the following:

Your current address

Your Social Security number

The address of residences from the past five years

After filling out a form, the report will be mailed to you within five business days. The site offers a sample report, too.