Streamlined CDFI qualification, application process deadline is April 3

The deadline for the NCUA’s streamlined CDFI qualification and application process for low-income credit unions interested in obtaining certification is Saturday, April 3.

The streamlined process is designed to expand access in low-income and financially underserved communities and individuals and provides credit unions with the opportunity to enhance their capacity to better serve members through a variety of awards and programs.

To participate in the qualification process, a credit union must meet all of the following requirements:

  • is federally insured through the NCUA;
  • has a low-income designation granted by the NCUA or a similar state designation confirmed by the NCUA; and
  • provides at least one of the following programs and services to its members:
    • financial counseling or education;
    • financial literacy workshops;
    • in-school branches; or
    • a first-time homebuyer program.

To reduce applicant burden, the NCUA performs an initial analysis determining whether your credit union is a strong candidate for the streamlined process. To participate, your credit union must provide a defined set of loan information for analysis to determine if the qualification criteria are met. Qualified credit unions will then be provided with the necessary information to complete and submit the application to the CDFI Fund. For a detailed overview of the qualification process, visit the NCUA website.

Credit unions that do not qualify to use the streamlined certification application should explore using the standard application or participate in the qualification process intake period during the next calendar year. Inclusiv, a New York Credit Union Association strategic partner, is working with CUNA Mutual Group and credit union leagues and associations to increase awareness about the CDFI certification and help credit unions navigate the process. More information is available on Inclusiv’s CDFI resource page and CDFI office hours are available every Wednesday.

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