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Chartering a Bank in the District of Columbia

The Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking (DISB) regulates financial service businesses in the District of Columbia. The agency also issues charters for depository institutions.

Commitment to Quality

The philosophy of DISB is that all financial institutions deserve firm, fair and consistent regulation and supervision. We are actively involved in strategic planning at all levels of the organization and believe that our commitment to quality translates into better service to the institutions that we regulate.

Lower Fees and Assessments

The fees charged by DISB are significantly lower (e.g. application fees, assessments) than those charged by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and our counterparts in neighboring jurisdictions.

Access to District of Columbia Government Resources 

District law requires that D.C banks be given the opportunity to receive deposits of District funds.  Additionally, with easier access to District officials, District bankers have considerably more opportunity to discuss banking policy.

Great Working Relationship with Federal Regulators

DISB maintains a good working relationship with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and Federal Reserve Bank (FRB).

  1. The de novo bank application and/or conversion process is a joint effort between the state and federal regulator which minimizes investigation, turnaround time and the regulatory burden on the applicant.
  2. DISB has a cooperative examination agreement with the FDIC to conduct examinations on a joint basis. The joint examination and issuance of a single report essentially assures that a District bank will have only one regulatory examination on either a 12 or 18 month cycle.
  3. We coordinate efforts to determine and adopt appropriate remedies for problem issues involving District chartered banks, thereby resulting in greater overall regulatory flexibility.

We believe that the combination of these and other factors make the District charter the charter of choice for both domestic and international institutions. We welcome your interest and encourage you to contact us if you need additional information or if we may offer assistance to you.

If you would like to start a new bank or convert an existing federal charter to a D.C. charter we encourage you to contact Christopher Weaver at (202) 727-8000 or by email at christopher.weaver@dc.gov for additional information.