Understanding the specifics of banking transactions, especially when they appear in cryptic codes, can often be a daunting task. For example, one term you might encounter in your bank statement is TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO. This term is often seen in Chase banking statements and is significant for account holders.

It is crucial to break down each term component and its function within the banking system to understand this terminology.



TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO represents an automatic transfer of funds from one account (typically a savings account) to another (typically a checking account) under the facility of overdraft protection. This transaction aims to cover a transaction that would have otherwise caused an overdraft in your checking account.

The TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO notation, which indicates an automatic transfer of funds to cover a potential overdraft, is crucial for a few key reasons:

  1. Avoiding Overdraft Fees: Overdraft fees can be substantial, often ranging from $30-$35 per transaction that exceeds the available balance. The TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO process helps you avoid these fees by transferring funds from a linked account to cover the overdraft.
  2. Preventing Declined Transactions: The transaction may be declined if an account lacks sufficient funds. This could lead to late payments, declined purchases, or bounced checks, which can have serious consequences, including damage to your credit score, additional late payment fees, or disrupted services. By covering the overdraft, the TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO process can prevent these situations.
  3. Maintaining Financial Stability: The TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO process can help maintain financial stability by automatically transferring funds to cover a potential overdraft. It ensures that payments are made on time and that your financial transactions proceed smoothly, contributing to better financial management and peace of mind.
  4. Creating a Financial Safety Net: In the case of an unexpected expense or a mistake in budgeting, TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO acts as a financial safety net, providing a temporary solution to prevent overdrafts.

While TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO is a beneficial feature, it’s also important to note that there might be fees associated with the overdraft protection service. These are typically lower than the overdraft fees but can still add up if the service is used frequently. Moreover, regularly relying on overdraft protection could also lead to the depletion of your savings over time. Therefore, managing your finances wisely and considering the overdraft protection service as a safety net rather than a primary financial strategy is crucial.


  • TOT: This stands for “total” or “transfer of total.” It represents the initiation of a movement of funds from one place to another.
  • ODP: This is an abbreviation for “Overdraft Protection.” Overdraft protection is a service that banks provide that allows you to spend more money than you have in your account, thus preventing any bounced checks, declined transactions, or penalties for insufficient funds.
  • SWP: This abbreviation stands for “sweep.” A sweep in banking terms refers to the automatic movement of funds between two accounts.
  • CR MEMO: This stands for “Credit Memorandum.” A credit memorandum is a document issued by a bank that signifies an increase or credit to the client’s account.

TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO Practical Example

Jack is a freelance graphic designer who maintains checking and savings accounts with Chase Bank. Jack uses his checking account for daily expenses while he stashes away part of his earnings in his savings account for future needs.

On May 21, Jack checks his checking account balance and sees that he has $500. He also has an outstanding bill payment for his new laptop, which amounts to $700, due May 22. Forgetting this upcoming bill, Jack spends $100 on groceries and other utilities.

At the end of May 21, his checking account balance dropped to $400. The next day, his automatic bill payment for the laptop triggers, intending to withdraw $700 from his checking account.

Jack would ordinarily face an overdraft without sufficient funds in the checking account to cover the laptop payment. As a result, his account balance would go into the negatives, the transaction might be declined, or he could incur a Non-Sufficient Funds (NSF) fee.

However, Jack had previously opted for Chase’s Overdraft Protection service. With this service, when the laptop payment triggers and the checking account does not have enough funds, Chase automatically ‘sweeps’ or transfers money from Jack’s linked savings account to his checking account.

Suppose Jack has $5000 in his savings account. When the automatic payment of $700 for the laptop tries to go through, Chase will move $300 from Jack’s savings account to his checking account. This is the exact amount needed to cover the difference and prevent the checking account from going into overdraft.

After the transaction, Jack’s checking account would be $0 (having paid the laptop bill), and his savings account would be $4700 (having transferred $300 to cover the overdraft).

On Jack’s savings account statement, this transaction would show up as “TOT ODP/SWP DR MEMO $300,” indicating a debit of $300 due to the overdraft sweep. The corresponding transaction on his checking account statement would show as “TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO $300,” indicating a credit of $300 received from the overdraft sweep.

This example should give you a practical understanding of how the TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO automatically transfers funds to prevent an overdraft in a checking account. In addition, the bank provides a protective measure to avoid any penalties for insufficient funds. However, monitoring the account balances and managing expenses wisely is essential to avoid such situations.



An overdraft might occur when a transaction exceeds the available balance in your checking account. Banks offer overdraft protection services to help you avoid overdraft penalties, such as non-sufficient funds (NSF) fees or declined transactions.

If you’ve enrolled in overdraft protection with Chase, funds can be automatically ‘swept’ from your linked savings account to your checking account to cover the shortfall. This ‘sweep’ shows up on your bank statement as TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO.


A similar term often correlating with TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO is TOT ODP/SWP DR MEMO. The DR in this phrase stands for “Debit,” implying a decrease or deduction in the account. Therefore, your statement’s TOT ODP/SWP DR MEMO refers to the deduction from your savings account for automatically transferring funds to cover an overdraft. Simultaneously, the TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO indicates the corresponding credit made to your checking account.

TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO Benefits and Drawbacks

The primary benefit of the TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO process is that it can prevent you from incurring overdraft fees, having transactions declined, or having checks returned due to insufficient funds. It offers a sort of ‘buffer’ for financial management, providing peace of mind to account holders.

However, there are some potential drawbacks to be aware of. For example, some banks, including Chase, may charge a fee for each overdraft protection transfer, usually lower than an overdraft fee. Additionally, frequent use of overdraft protection could potentially lead to a depletion of your savings.

Understanding banking terms like TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO is crucial for effectively managing your finances. While the system has advantages, it’s equally important to maintain good budgeting habits and keep a close eye on account balances to avoid relying too heavily on overdraft protection.


  1. Avoidance of Overdraft Fees: The main benefit of TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO (Transfer of Overdraft Protection/Sweep Credit Memorandum) is that it can prevent account holders from incurring overdraft fees if a checking account balance falls below zero.
  2. No Transaction Declines: Overdraft protection can prevent transactions from being declined or checks from being returned due to insufficient funds.
  3. Financial Security: The service can provide a form of financial buffer, offering account holders peace of mind in case of unexpected expenses or miscalculations in their budgeting.


  1. Potential for Additional Fees: While the service can prevent overdraft fees, some banks may charge a fee for each overdraft protection transfer, which can add up over time if used frequently.
  2. Risk of Savings Depletion: If linked to a savings account for overdraft protection, frequent use of the service could potentially deplete savings over time, undermining long-term financial goals.
  3. Possibility of Encouraging Poor Financial Habits: Some may view overdraft protection as a safety net and become less diligent about budgeting and tracking expenses, leading to poor financial habits.
  4. Limited Coverage: The overdraft protection might not cover every type of transaction, so there are instances where the account holder might still face an overdraft.


TOT ODP/SWP CR MEMO is a banking term representing a bank’s automatic protective measure of its clients from potential penalties due to insufficient funds in their accounts. This service, although beneficial, should ideally be used as a backup plan rather than a regular financial management strategy.

Daniel Smith

Daniel Smith

Daniel Smith is an experienced economist and financial analyst from Utah. He has been in finance for nearly two decades, having worked as a senior analyst for Wells Fargo Bank for 19 years. After leaving Wells Fargo Bank in 2014, Daniel began a career as a finance consultant, advising companies and individuals on economic policy, labor relations, and financial management. At Promtfinance.com, Daniel writes about personal finance topics, value estimation, budgeting strategies, retirement planning, and portfolio diversification. Read more on Daniel Smith's biography page. Contact Daniel: daniel@promtfinance.com

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