Chesterfield Federal Credit Union Seeks Merger to Benefit Members

A Message From Your Board


Dear Members,

Your Chesterfield Federal Credit Union (CFCU) Board of Directors is pleased to announce that it has approved and is seeking a merger with Virginia Credit Union (VACU).

We made this decision to ensure the long-term sustainability and expansion of services to our members. With growing costs for technology, compliance, and security, we believe such a step has become necessary. It is increasingly difficult for small and mid-size credit unions like ours to provide the range of services that members deserve and expect.

It is the role of the Board of Directors to look ahead and make decisions that we believe place our credit union in the best position to serve you. As we look to the future, we recognize the potential for economic challenges ahead. The last recession was very difficult for many businesses, including our credit union, and we are not confident that we could remain well-capitalized through another economic downturn. We believe the time to take this step is now, while our credit union remains financially sound and we have the opportunity to partner with a strong, local credit union. Your board is made up of members of CFCU, and we believe the merger is in the best interest of the credit union and membership.

We reached out to the Virginia Credit Union because of our common base of operations, VACU’s stellar reputation, its wide range of products and services, and the fact that Virginia Credit Union’s mission and vision aligns so well with ours. VACU is already a huge supporter of our community by sponsoring Communities in Schools Chesterfield, Chesterfield Education Foundation, Chesterfield employee and community wellness initiative, and is partnering with Chesterfield County Parks and Recreation to support family activities in Chesterfield such as the Fourth of July Celebration, Family Movie Nights, Hang Time summer camp, the National Night Out program and Trunk or Treat Halloween event. In addition, we determined that Virginia Credit Union has resources to make additional investments in facilities that will benefit all members once the merger is complete. As required by regulators, Virginia Credit Union’s Board of Directors has also approved the merger.

With approximately $3.7 billion in assets, Virginia Credit Union is the largest state-chartered credit union in Virginia and already serves more than 50,000 residents of Chesterfield County including many Chesterfield County employees. VACU has 18 branches and a variety of online and electronic services to serve members wherever they are. Virginia Credit Union is federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) and is an equal housing opportunity lender.

Following the merger, CFCU members will benefit from additional services to members, such as more robust online and mobile banking technology, expanded credit card options, greater deposit, loan and mortgage services, and a fee rebate program that provides access to ATMs everywhere. Business services are also available. You can visit www.vacu.orgOpens in New Window to learn more about Virginia Credit Union’s wide range of products, services and financial education programs.

This merger is subject to a vote by the CFCU membership. Your Board has called a special meeting of the members of CFCU for January 23, 2020 at 10:30 a.m. The meeting will be held at the Thomas R. Fulghum Conference Center at the Chesterfield Career and Technical Center, 13900 Hull Street Road, Midlothian, VA 23112. You will receive in the mail a Notice of Special Meeting of the Members of Chesterfield Federal Credit Union containing more information about the merger, VACU and the voting process, along with a ballot and postage paid return envelope. This mailing is expected to be delivered the week of December 3rd. Pending final member and regulatory approval, we anticipate a merger date in early 2020 with full consolidation of CFCU’s operations into VACU’s continuing into 2020.

Scott W. Zaremba
Chairman
Chesterfield Federal Credit Union Board of Directors

  • FAQs
  • Timeline
FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

We have included many of the questions members are asking about the merger below for your reference.  We'll update this page as we receive more information.

What is occurring?

The Board of Directors of Chesterfield Federal Credit Union (CFCU) has determined that it is in the best interest of our membership and our credit union to merge and become a part of Virginia Credit Union (VACU). The Board made this decision to ensure the long-term sustainability and expansion of services to our members.  

Why is this happening?

It is increasingly difficult for small and mid-size credit unions like ours to provide the range of services that members deserve and expect, especially with the growing cost of technology, regulatory compliance and security. Our Board determined that such a step was necessary and in the best interest of the credit union and our membership.  

Was CFCU forced to do this? Is it in financial trouble?

It is the responsibility of our credit Union’s Board to position our credit union to best serve the members. So while our credit union is financially sound, the Board recognizes the potential for economic challenges ahead. The last recession was very difficult for many businesses, including our credit union, and the Board is not confident that CFCU could remain well-capitalized through another economic downturn. The Board believes the time to take this step is now, while our credit union has the opportunity to partner with a strong, local credit union. With Virginia Credit Union, our CFCU Board has found a credit union with a similar mission for members’ financial well-being, and the resources necessary to invest in expanding service for our membership.  

What has to happen for the merger to be completed?

The merger requires a vote by our membership and final approval by regulators.  

When would this occur?

We expect the merger will become legal in early 2020 and the full consolidation of CFCU’s operations into VACU would be completed by the middle of 2020.  

Will VACU continue to operate the CFCU branches?

For now, all three CFCU branches will continue to operate as before. However, once the merger consolidation is complete, the CFCU branch at Brandermill will be closed. Virginia Credit Union has branches at Hancock Village and Genito that can serve members in that area. The CFCU branches in the village of Midlothian and near Chesterfield Courthouse don’t overlap with VACU’s branch footprint and would remain open.  

What other changes should we expect?

Efforts will be made to make the merger as streamlined and simple as possible for CFCU members. VACU has similar products and services to those we offer, so in most cases, the transition will be simple. In the meantime, members should continue to use services as before. The merger requires a vote by our membership through a mailed ballot or at the member meeting. As a member, your support through this transition is appreciated.

Will VACU continue to support the services that CFCU offers?

There are no changes in immediate future, and you should continue to use your CFCU services as before. Once the merger is approved, there will be many operational details to be worked out and specific information will be shared with all members by mail, email and online to help all members know what to expect. VACU is interested in serving our membership and we will let them know about the programs we have supported in the past.  

What will happen to the CFCU employees?

Employees at CFCU can apply for positions at VACU.  

Is this definite? Will it help if I vote no?

Our CFCU Board approached Virginia Credit Union once they determined that a merger was in the best interest of our credit union and its members. They made the decision to ensure the long-term sustainability and expansion of services to our members. The Board supports the merger. A vote of the membership and final approval by regulators are required steps. Your support and participation are appreciated.  

Should I close my account?

No. The merger requires a vote by the CFCU membership and final approval by regulators. If all moves according to plan, full consolidation of CFCU’s operations into VACU’s would not be completed for several months. Until that time, CFCU members should continue using their CFCU services as before.  

Can I start using VACU locations now?

No. The merger requires a positive vote by the CFCU membership and final approval by regulators before it can proceed. If that happens, full consolidation of CFCU’s operations into VACU would require several months. Until that time, CFCU members should continue using their CFCU services as before.  

Why won’t VACU keep the Brandermill branch open?

At first, all three CFCU branches will continue to operate as before. However, once the merger consolidation is complete, the CFCU branch at Brandermill will be closed. Virginia Credit Union has branches at Hancock Village and Genito that can serve members in that area. The CFCU branches in the village of Midlothian and near Chesterfield Courthouse don’t overlap with VACU’s branch footprint and would remain open.  

Can I use my CFCU debit card to get cash at VACU ATMs without a fee?

For now, CFCU members should continue using their CFCU services as before. The merger requires a positive vote by the CFCU membership and final approval by regulators before it can proceed.    

Will this affect my membership in the credit union?

If the merger is approved by members and regulators, then all existing members will become members of Virginia Credit Union. Our credit unions will be working together for a smooth transition.  

Why didn’t the Board choose another credit union to merge with?

The Board considered various credit unions and selected Virginia Credit Union because of its range of products and services, commitment to Chesterfield County, and the alignment of our organizations’ missions.

Timeline

Timeline of Events

Members can reference this calendar to keep informed of important dates in the merger process.

Week of December 3rd

Members will receive their merger packet and ballot in the mail.

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2020

Ballots must be received by mail or in the branches.

Thursday, January 23rd, 2020 | 10:30am

Meeting of the membership at the Chesterfield Technical Center @ Hull Street.  This is the last chance to vote for the merger

Wednesday, April 1st, 2020

Proposed legal merger date, pending member vote and regulatory approval

Date TBD, May or June

System conversion date.  All Chesterfield Federal Credit Union accounts will become Virginia Credit Union accounts and members will have access to the full VACU branch network.