By the Division of Banks

Limitations On Bank Deposit Contracts

It is the position of the Division of Banks that the relationship between a bank and a proposed customer seeking to establish a deposit account is voluntary and fundamentally a contractual matter. Such relationships may be initiated "upon such terms and conditions as may be agreed upon between the depositor and the bank...," pursuant to Mass. Gen. Laws chapter 167D, § 2(1). Accordingly, a Massachusetts-chartered savings bank may decline to enter into a deposit account relationship with any individual so long as such denial is not based on the proposed depositor's race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, age, or other protected class without violating the equal protection clause of the Massachusetts Constitution. See Mass. Gen. Laws chapter 151B, § 3(6); see also 24 CFR 202.2(z)(Regulation B). In addition, it remains the position of the Division that neither the Massachusetts Constitution nor any other law under the Division's jurisdiction would be violated by such bank practices regardless of whether the individual or entity seeking to establish any such deposit account resided in the Commonwealth or any other location in a bank's market area or delineated community for purposes of the Community Reinvestment Act.