The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) preserves and promotes public confidence in the U.S. financial system by insuring deposits in banks and thrift institutions for at least $250,000; by identifying, monitoring and addressing risks to the deposit insurance funds; and by limiting the effect on the economy and the financial system when a bank or thrift institution fails.

An independent agency of the federal government, the FDIC was created in 1933 in response to the thousands of bank failures that occurred in the 1920s and early 1930s. Since the start of FDIC insurance on January 1, 1934, no depositor has lost a single cent of insured funds as a result of a failure.

The FDIC receives no Congressional appropriations – it is funded by premiums that banks and thrift institutions pay for deposit insurance coverage and from earnings on investments in U.S. Treasury securities. The FDIC insures trillions of dollars of deposits in U.S. banks and thrifts – deposits in virtually every bank and thrift in the country.

The standard insurance amount is $250,000 per depositor, per insured bank, for each account ownership category. The FDIC’s Electronic Deposit Insurance Estimatorcan help you determine if you have adequate deposit insurance for your accounts.

The FDIC insures deposits only. It does not insure securities, mutual funds or similar types of investments that banks and thrift institutions may offer. (Deposit Insurance: What’s Covered distinguishes between what is and is not protected by FDIC insurance.)

The FDIC directly examines and supervises about 4,000 banks and savings banks for operational safety and soundness, more than half of the institutions in the banking system. Banks can be chartered by the states or by the federal government. Banks chartered by states also have the choice of whether to join the Federal Reserve System. The FDIC is the primary federal regulator of banks that are chartered by the states that do not join the Federal Reserve System. In addition, the FDIC is the back-up supervisor for the remaining insured banks and thrift institutions.

The FDIC also examines banks for compliance with consumer protection laws, including the Fair Credit Billing Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Truth-In-Lending Act, and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, to name a few. Finally, the FDIC examines banks for compliance with the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) which requires banks to help meet the credit needs of the communities they were chartered to serve.

To protect insured depositors, the FDIC responds immediately when a bank or thrift institution fails. Institutions generally are closed by their chartering authority – the state regulator, or the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. The FDIC has several options for resolving institution failures, but the one most used is to sell deposits and loans of the failed institution to another institution. Customers of the failed institution automatically become customers of the assuming institution. Most of the time, the transition is seamless from the customer’s point of view.

The FDIC is headquartered in Washington, D.C., but conducts much of its business in regional and field offices around the country.

The FDIC is managed by a five-person Board of Directors, all of whom are appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate, with no more than three being from the same political party.


For more information, visit: https://www.fdic.gov/


A license is an authorization given by the owner of land to another to perform an act or acts on the owner’s property. The owner’s permission may be expressed or implied. The license is a personal privilege; it is not an interest or right in the land. Generally, licenses are revocable at will by the land owner. The classic license is personal to the license holder and cannot be transferred, assigned, conveyed, or inherited. Written license agreements frequently blur the line between easements and licenses.


Disputes large and small are a regular part of life in homeowner associations. While always prepared to litigate, Epsten believes it is preferable to settle many disputes through quicker and less costly methods, including negotiation and mediation. Experience has shown that the results of mediation can be effective and satisfying. Mediation can be the fastest, most-effective solution to conflicts between homeowners and homeowners in conflict with their association.

In mediation, the disputing parties present their problem to a neutral third person who is an experienced mediator. Investigation and documentation of the complaint is made and the mediator conducts meetings to openly explore the opposing positions and guide negotiation between the parties. If the parties do not reach a compromise on their own, the mediator presents a resolution of the dispute that the parties can either accept or reject. While mediation is non-binding, studies have documented a success rate of 85% when a mediator is employed to settle a dispute.

Annual Policy Statement

Every year, pursuant to Civil Code section 5310, community associations are required to provide their members with Annual Policy Disclosures. These disclosures range from the association’s discipline policy to their delinquent assessment policy. These disclosures must be provided to members no more than 90 and no less than 30 days prior to the end of the association’s fiscal year.

Bank Statements, Reviewing

Pursuant to Civil Code section 5500, board members have a fiscal duty to review the latest account statements prepared by the financial institutions where the association has its operating and reserve accounts. In addition to other duties set forth in this section, this particular duty aims to prevent embezzlement, theft and misappropriation of association funds.

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is a toxic, colorless, odorless gas, produced by the use of fossil-based fuels in areas without adequate ventilation. As of July 1, 2011 the Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act required owners of all single-family homes with an attached garage or a fossil fuel source to install carbon monoxide detectors within the home by July 1, 2011. Owners of multi-family leased or rental dwellings, such as apartment buildings, had until January 1, 2013 to comply with the law. (Health & Safety Code §17926) Operable smoke alarms have been required as far back as January 1, 1986. (Health & Safety Code §13113.8)

Common Area

Common areas are the portions of a development in which the owners have some collective interest. It is typically all of the development except for the property interests that are owned by the homeowners. Common area can consist of one or more of the following types of interests. It can be owned: (1) by an association; (2) by a group of owners or all owners collectively (also called “tenants in common”); (3) as mutual easements; or, (4) reciprocal easements. See Civil Code section 4095.


At their most basic root, associations are nonprofit corporations and thus must adhere to the Corporations Code. Oftentimes, procedures and rules missing from the Davis-Stirling Act can be found in the Corporations Code.


Directors are elected by the members to the board of an association. An association’s bylaws generally dictate the number of required directors, whether directors must be members of the association and other director qualifications. Directors vote on association matters and can only be removed by a recall election or by specified reasons in the governing documents or Corporations Code.

Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

Effective 1/1/2012, a CC&R provision which prohibits or restricts the installation or use of an electric vehicle charging station is void and unenforceable, although the association may impose “reasonable” restrictions (such as those which do not significantly increase the cost of the station or significant decrease its efficiency or specified performance.) If the station is to be placed on common area, including exclusive use common area, the owner must obtain the association’s permission to install it. The association may impose conditions on its approval, as set forth in Civ. Code §4745(f). An association is required to grant permission for an owner to install a charging station, for the owner’s sole use, on the common area, if and only if installation of the station in the owner’s designated parking space is impossible or unreasonably expensive. The association may impose conditions on the installation of the station as set forth in §4745(f).