The Georgia Department of Banking and Finance (“Department”) took possession of Freedom Bank of Georgia, Commerce, Georgia on March 6, 2009. The Superior Court of Jackson County issued an Order appointing the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”) as Receiver of the Bank effective upon the Department taking possession of Freedom Bank of Georgia.
The Department took possession of Freedom Bank of Georgia pursuant to the Official Code of Georgia, Section 7-1-150(a) which authorizes the Department in its discretion to take possession of the business and property of any state chartered financial institution whenever such financial institution is either insolvent or operating in an unsafe or unsound condition to transact its business, is operating in violation of any court order, statute, rule or regulation, or requests the Department to take possession of its business and property.
Through an agreement with the FDIC, Freedom Bank of Georgia will be acquired by Northeast Georgia Bank, Lavonia, Georgia.
All deposit accounts of Freedom Bank of Georgia have been transferred to Northeast Georgia Bank, and will be available immediately. On March 9, 2009, depositors will be able to access their accounts at the former main office and branch locations of Freedom Bank of Georgia. For the time being, former customers of Freedom Bank of Georgia should use the former offices of Freedom Bank of Georgia until Northeast Georgia Bank can fully integrate the deposit records of Freedom Bank of Georgia. Additionally, the former depositors of Freedom Bank of Georgia can continue to access their accounts through automated teller machine transactions, checks and debit transactions.
The Department’s Commissioner, Robert M. Braswell, reminds depositors that deposits of all Georgia banks are insured by the FDIC up to $250,000. Special rules are in place for accounts held in trust status and joint accounts that may further expand deposit insurance coverage. You can find additional information on FDIC Deposit Insurance at www.fdic.gov.
The FDIC has established a website and a toll-free phone number to answer questions from depositors, creditors and other interested parties regarding the receivership of Freedom Bank of Georgia. Please refer to the FDIC’s website for further information regarding the details of the purchase and assumption transaction. The website is www.fdic.gov and the toll-free phone number is 1-866-782-1897. The phone number is operational on Friday from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, on Saturday from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. and thereafter from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.