Montana Code Annotated 2023



Part 1. General Provisions


32-6-103. Definitions. As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires, the following definitions apply:

(1) "Customer", in relation to a financial institution, means a holder of a demand or time account or a membership share in the institution or a person who is a borrower or a mortgagor; in relation to a merchant, it means a purchaser of goods or services.

(2) "Department" means the department of administration.

(3) (a) "Electronic funds transfer" means any transfer of funds, other than a transaction originated by check, draft, or similar paper instrument that is initiated through an electronic terminal, telephone, computer, or magnetic tape for the purpose of ordering, instructing, or authorizing a financial institution to debit or credit an account. The term includes but is not limited to point-of-sale transfers, automated teller machine transfers, direct deposits or withdrawals of funds, and transfers initiated by telephone. It also includes a transfer resulting from a debit card transaction, including a transaction that does not involve an electronic terminal at the time of the transaction.

(b) The term does not include payments made by check, draft, or similar paper instrument at an electronic terminal.

(4) "Electronic terminal" means an electronic device, other than a telephone operated by a consumer, through which a consumer may initiate an electronic funds transfer. The term includes but is not limited to point-of-sale terminals, automated teller machines, and cash dispensing machines.

(5) "Financial institution" means a bank chartered under chapter 1 of this title, a bank chartered under the National Banking Acts in Title 12 of the United States Code, a building and loan association chartered under chapter 2 of this title, a savings and loan association chartered under the Home Owners' Loan Act in Title 12 of the United States Code, a credit union chartered under chapter 3 of this title, or a credit union chartered under the Federal Credit Union Act in Title 12 of the United States Code. For purposes of this chapter only, a consumer loan company licensed under chapter 5 is considered a financial institution.

(6) "Merchant" means a natural person, corporation, partnership, or association engaged in buying and selling goods or services, except that a financial institution is not a merchant.

(7) "Person" means an individual, partnership, corporation, association, or any other business organization.

(8) "Premises" means those locations where, by applicable law, financial institutions are authorized to maintain a principal place of business and other offices for the conduct of their respective businesses.

(9) (a) "Satellite terminal" means any machine or device that is located off the premises of a financial institution and that a financial institution or its customers may use to carry out electronic funds transfers.

(b) Satellite terminal includes:

(i) an automated teller machine, which means a satellite terminal to make electronic funds transfers, located off the premises of financial institutions, operated by customers of financial institutions without assistance, and activated by a unique identification device and personal identification number;

(ii) a point-of-sale terminal, which means a satellite terminal located on the premises of a merchant, operated by a customer, a merchant, or the merchant's employees solely to debit or credit a customer's deposit or share account in a financial institution and solely to credit or debit the merchant's account commensurately for transactions in goods or services. A point-of-sale terminal need not be activated by a unique personal identification device. A merchant has the option, if the necessary computer capability exists at a reasonable cost, of selling goods or services by point-of-sale terminals with the electronic funds transfer taking effect at the time of the transaction or at a stated time after the transaction.

(c) The definition of satellite terminal does not include and nothing in this chapter may be construed to apply to:

(i) an automated teller machine located on the premises of a financial institution;

(ii) an automated clearinghouse or any equivalent system designed to transfer funds between financial institutions; or

(iii) a point-of-sale terminal that is used by a merchant in the merchant's business only and does not provide access to a financial institution.

(10) "Unique identification device" means a magnetic encoded plastic card or equivalent device that contains either a number or a dollar balance, or both, that is unique to a customer and that is issued by a financial institution, merchant, or other person.

History: En. 5-1703 by Sec. 3, Ch. 503, L. 1977; R.C.M. 1947, 5-1703; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 274, L. 1981; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 255, L. 1989; amd. Sec. 13, Ch. 265, L. 1995; amd. Sec. 101, Ch. 483, L. 2001; amd. Sec. 29, Ch. 75, L. 2019.