The United States Congress has voted to increase the FDIC insurance on bank accounts to $250,000 per account/per holder. (It was part of the recent big ecomonic stability bill). This increase is only temporary – until the end of 2009. (It may later be made permanent.)

FDIC insurance is per depositor, so a married couple (or anyone else) with a joint account gets double the amount of protection. This increase in protection also works for accounts owned by a Trust and certain accounts that have beneficiaries such as “ITF” or “Totten Trust” accounts. (An ITF [in trust for] or Totten Trust account is not really held in Trust – it is an account with a lifetime owner and one or more named beneficiaries to take ownership upon the death of the lifetime owner.)

For a good explanation of the FDIC trust rules, check out the blog of my colleague Jan Myskowski of Wiggin and Nourie in Manchester, New Hampshire:

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