Overdrafting means taking more money out of your bank account than you have in your available balance.
Overdrafts commonly occur when you make a purchase that exceeds your balance, but it’s also possible to overdraft at an ATM.
Most U.S. banks allow account holders to opt in for such transactions, but they do charge fees if you have a negative balance, known as overdraft fees.
Below, we explain overdrafts in further detail and list the banks that allow overdrafts at an ATM.
We compiled this information by contacting bank customer service departments and viewing account and overdraft protection disclosures online.
What to Know Before You Overdraft
Overdraft Amount Limits
ATMs will let you overdraft — if your account has the option to overdraft. There’s no universal limit on how much you can overdraft at an ATM.
A bank’s overdraft limit depends on a variety of factors and often varies from one customer to the next.
New account holders and account holders with low credit scores are usually granted a courtesy overdraft limit between $100 and $300, while customers in excellent standing can often overdraft $1,000 or more, bank representatives told us.
You can ask your financial institution about your overdraft limit, but in an attempt to discourage overdrafts, the bank may not tell you what it is.
Bank overdraft fees can be high, so it’s important to educate yourself about your financial institution’s policies before choosing to overdraw your account.
Fees are typically around $30 to $40 per overdrawn transaction, meaning the bank can charge several overdraft fees in one day.
Can You Overdraft With a Debit Card?
It’s possible to overdraft with a debit card, both when making a purchase and when using an ATM. Your bank will set the limit on how much you can overdraw, if at all.
If you see the term “overdrawn” on your bank statement, it means you must fund your account to return it to a positive number. Otherwise, you might incur penalty fees — or even collections — from your bank.
Funding your account will prevent this from happening. Contact your financial institution to discuss your options.
Can You Overdraft With a Credit Card?
It’s possible to exceed your credit card limit, but credit card issuers do not usually call this an “overdraft.” Rather than overdraft fees, credit cards may charge over-limit fees.
Withdrawing cash from your credit card at an ATM is usually considered a cash advance, which carries its own interest and fees.
Withdrawing cash on a credit card is expensive. Interest rates are higher than those for standard purchases — up to 25% or more.
In addition to the interest your cash advance will accrue, there are almost always fees associated with these types of cash withdrawals unless you have a special offer or special rate with your card.
You may need to contact your credit card company and request pre-authorization to overdraw your card. Find out more in our research on six ways to get cash from a credit card.
How Do Overdrafts Affect Your Credit Score?
A bank account overdraft usually won’t have an impact on your credit score unless you take too long to repay the overdraft, and the bank sends your account to collections (generally after 30 days).
Find out more in our research on how much you can overdraft your checking account.
Credit cards are a little trickier. Borrowing in any way, shape, or form affects your credit score. So, if you withdraw cash on a credit card, it’s recorded on your credit score.
Most lenders assessing your credit score will view cash withdrawals as a red flag; they may assume you had to withdraw cash from your credit card due to financial problems.
ATM Overdraft Policies by Bank
Although many banks allow overdrafts at ATMs using a debit card, most of them require you to opt into this service. Even then, many banks approve or decline ATM overdrafts at their discretion.
Below, we provide the list of banks that allow overdrafts at ATMs, including their overdraft fees.
These are for standard personal checking accounts. Note that teen accounts, college accounts, business accounts, and other types of accounts may have different procedures for overdrafts, including different fee amounts.
- ATM overdraft process: The bank approves or denies each overdraft transaction at its discretion unless you choose an account with no overdraft fees (meaning no approved overdraft transactions).
- Overdraft fee: $25 per overdraft with a maximum of $75 per day
Bank of America
- ATM overdraft process: You can opt into Balance Connect for overdraft protection. This allows you to link eligible checking accounts to your Bank of America account. If you don’t have Balance Connect, it will be at Bank of America’s discretion to allow or decline the overdraft.
- Overdraft fee: $12 per transfer when it’s over $1 for Balance Connect; $10 per overdraft without Balance Connect
- ATM overdraft process: You can update your overdraft settings in your online banking account or opt into Capital One’s Free Savings Transfer overdraft protection plan, which links your checking and savings accounts. Capital One approves or declines overdrafts at its discretion.
- Overdraft fee: No overdraft fees for consumer banking customers
- ATM overdraft process: You must have overdraft protection with a linked Savings or Money Market account; some ATMs will show the total amount of your eChecking and linked overdraft protection account as your available balance.
- Overdraft fee: No fee to transfer from a linked account
- ATM overdraft process: You can opt into one of their overdraft protection plans, such as linking a savings account. They also offer standard overdraft practices. The standard option requires you to contact Citizens Bank by phone, Online Banking, or in person before using ATM overdraft. Approval is at Citizens Bank’s discretion.
- Overdraft fee: $35 for each standard overdraft practices charge; accounts overdrawn for five consecutive business days will also be charged a Sustained Overdraft Fee of $30. There’s an added $30 fee on the eighth consecutive business day, as well as up to $90 on the eleventh day. There’s a limit of $175 in fees per business day.
Fifth Third Bank
- ATM overdraft process: You must opt into Overdraft Coverage for ATM transactions. If you do not opt in, any ATM overdraft requests will be denied. Once you opt in, the bank will set a limit as to how much you can overdraft at an ATM. That amount is at the bank’s discretion and varies for each account.
- Overdraft fee: $37 per overdraft with a maximum of five per day; waived if you overdraw your account by $5 or less; additional $25 fee on the seventh consecutive day of being overdrawn
- ATM overdraft process: You must opt into Overdraft Coverage. The bank will then approve overdrafts at its discretion.
- Overdraft fee: $36 per overdraft with a maximum of four per day; fees are refunded if the account is overdrawn by $5 or less at the end of the day. Virtual Wallet’s Low Cash Mode allows you 24 hours to bring your account balance to $0 or above to avoid overdraft fees.
- ATM overdraft process: You must opt into TD Debit Card Advance overdraft coverage. Once opted in, the bank will consider covering an ATM overdraft, but it’s not guaranteed.
- Overdraft fee: $35 per overdraft with a maximum of three per day; waived if you overdraw your balance by less than $50
- ATM overdraft process: Truist offers Negative Balance Buffer, which allows for up to $100 in overdraft coverage. You’ll need Overdraft Protection for higher amounts. This is an optional service used by linking your Truist checking or money market accounts which make up the difference when you overdraft.
- Overdraft fee: No overdraft fees when using Negative Balance Buffer or Overdraft Protection
- ATM overdraft process: You must opt into ATM and Debit Card Overdraft Coverage, and the bank will review and approve each overdraft attempt at its discretion.
- Overdraft fee: $36 per overdraft with a maximum of four per day
- ATM overdraft process: Debit Card Overdraft Services are available, but the bank will approve or deny each overdraft at its discretion. Overdraft Protection is another option that allows you to link up to two eligible accounts to your checking account. You can opt into and out of either of these services at any time.
- Overdraft fee: There’s no fee to use Overdraft Protection. Debit Card Overdraft Services charge $35 per overdraft with a maximum of three fees per day. If your account receives an electronic direct deposit before 9 a.m. local time the following business day, overdraft fees may be waived or refunded.
How to Avoid Overdrafts
To avoid overdrafting your bank account, you can choose not to opt in for overdraft protection, so the bank will immediately deny any transaction that would overdraw your balance.
You can also choose a form of overdraft protection that links a secondary account; you may still pay a fee, but it’s often lower than an unprotected overdraft.
Overdraft protection covers overdrafts caused by both ATM withdrawals and other transactions, such as checks and debit card purchases.
Additionally, keep the following tips in mind to help you avoid overdrafts:
- Know your account details. Are you enrolled in overdraft protection? What fees does your bank charge for overdrafts? Consider switching to a low-fee checking account if your current bank charges high fees. (See our list of the best checking accounts.)
- Track your spending and take receipts whenever you withdraw at ATMs.
- Ask your bank if you can receive text or email notifications when your account falls below a certain amount.
- Strategically organize your monthly payments to avoid overdrawing your account. Consider setting up a budget.
- Build a cash reserve, so you always have extra funds available in your checking account for emergencies.
- Consider using a low-interest credit card rather than overdrawing your account if you have an immediate financial need. It may be a more cost-effective alternative to overdrawing your account, especially if you can pay it off before it begins to accrue interest.