How Long Are Checks Good For?

At this point, the only way to process the payment is if the drawer — otherwise known as the check writer or issuer — changes the date on a replacement check or issues a new check. A stale check is an undeposited or uncashed check that may be too stale dated checks old to be processed by a bank, credit union, or other financial institution. A stale check is also referred to as a stale-dated check or an expired check. The length of time that a check is considered to be valid will vary from state to state.

If you did not deposit a check and it has been more than six months since you received it, it may be considered stale. You can try to deposit or cash it, but you risk having the check refused by your bank or returned by the issuing bank. Before attempting to cash or deposit an expired check, consider contacting the check writer and requesting a replacement check.

Checks You Write

A stop-payment order is intended to prohibit the check from being processed and the monies from being withdrawn from the account. Make sure to cash your federal tax refund check no later than a year from the date it was issued. We handle more modifications without a corresponding increase in staff. And the staff we do have contribute to the continued improvement of our efficiency and accuracy. Another solution is to contact the person or business that wrote you the check and ask them if they would issue another check to replace the stale one.

  • As the owner of a business, you should take the time to explicitly outline how your organization will handle stale checks.
  • As a result, when the forgotten check resurfaces without warning, there may not be enough funds in the account to cover it.
  • When an account is frozen, all outstanding checks are prevented from being cleared.

Almost every state requires a business to perform due diligence by contacting the owner of the unclaimed property. When a check is certified, the bank backs that the drawer’s signature is genuine and that he or she has enough money in the account to cover the cost of the check. A typical penalty assessed to the business owner would be a percentage of the property’s value and interest based on the delinquency of filing with the state. Do not place a stop payment with your bank until you have issued a new check.

What is the law on cashing old checks?

But banks can still process those payments if they believe the check is good. Checks that remain outstanding for long periods of time can’t be cashed, as they become void. Outstanding checks that remain so for a long period of time are known as “stale” checks.

  • Connect your Stripe Account to MoneyMinder PRO to directly download transactions, saving you time and effort.
  • Consider the types of unclaimed property you may have and research the state dormancy time for each.
  • If you have property that falls into any of the above categories, you may need to report it to the State of Arizona.
  • Connect your Bank, Square and PayPal accounts to MoneyMinder PRO to directly download transactions, saving you time and effort.
  • The only difference is that when issuing a cashier’s check, the bank withdraws the funds from the purchaser and then issues the check on the purchaser’s behalf.
  • Connect your Bank, Paypal and Square accounts to MoneyMinder PRO to directly download transactions, saving you time and effort.

If the stale check is returned for any reason, then your bank may charge a fee for returning the check back to you and reversing the deposit if the funds were not placed on hold. The policy should more clearly outline what you are going to do if a recipient does not cash a check that you’ve issued. One of the most significant problems with checks is that it’s easy to lose them, giving rise to what’s known as stale-dated checks. Furthermore, stale-dated check funds earn no interest or earnings and, if mishandled, can pose a risk to plan sponsors.

What are the risks of cashing a stale-dated check?

Personal Finance & Money Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for people who want to be financially literate. It may be tempting to merely reverse the expense and add the cash back into your general fund. Banks will not do so because of the accounting ramifications it can have.

what to do with stale dated checks

Connect your Stripe Account to MoneyMinder PRO to directly download transactions, saving you time and effort. If you try to cash a stale check or someone tries to deposit a stale-dated check that you’ve written, here are a few things to look out for. First, determine if it is a live check or not (such as an automatic withdrawal or credit card charge). Make sure that a replacement check was not cut or an order cancelled.

Presumably, they have funds available when they write the check, but that might change. Most people don’t expect checks to hit their account six months later, so they might not have money set aside for your payment anymore. Cashier’s checks can be complicated, and state law affects how long those payments are good for. Banks might not accept a cashier’s check for deposit after 90 days because the issuing bank could return the check unpaid after that time.

Consider the type of unclaimed property you could potentially have and investigate the state dormancy period for each. Without this information, it becomes much more challenging for your bank to process a stop payment. Keeping thorough records will go a long way toward ensuring business compliance.

Discover the Trustworthy LegalMatch Advantage

It may take some convincing, but it’s possible to have the bank settle the check for you, even after expiration. You should also keep diligent records of the attempts you made to contact the business owner. Cloud-based bill pay is disrupting the traditional accounts payable process and creating new opportunities. Read on for tips to keep financial reporting and accounting operations running smoothly during times of rapid revenue growth. Unclaimed property provisions implement two rules for determining the fiduciary state. Under the primary rule, the property is remitted to the state of the owner’s last known address as shown on the holder’s books and records.

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