Many questions exist when it comes to cashing foreign checks. Chief concerns include the lengthy clearance time required if you decide to deposit the check in your local bank account. Depending on what is available to you, cash the check at a local branch of the issuing bank or deposit the check in your bank account.
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Things you need
- Valid form of identification
- Secondary form of identification
Make sure the check is filled out completely and signed by the account holder.
Look on the left side of the check and see what bank issued the check. The bank can be found either in the upper- or middle-left portion of the check.
Check your local phone directory or online for the nearest branch location of the issuing bank.
Present the check along with valid identification such as a passport, driver's license, state I.D. or military I.D. to the bank. Depending on your identification, the bank may request that you present a secondary form of identification such as a valid major credit card, a work I.D. or school identification card.
Sign the back of your check in the presence of the teller. Your identification information is recorded on the check along with an impression of your thumbprint. The bank may access a fee to cash the check if you do not hold an account with it.
Receive your cash.
Look for the issuing bank. The bank information is found to the left on the check, in the upper corner or middle.
Determine if there are local branches of the issuing bank by looking in your local telephone directory or by going online.
Make sure the check is signed and all of the information is filled out properly.
Sign the back of the check and record the number of the account you are depositing the check into underneath your signature.
Take the check to your bank. Fill out a deposit slip.
Take the check and deposit slip to the teller. Ask the teller what is bank policy regarding the clearance period for checks drawn on foreign banks.
Wait for your funds to clear. Wait times for checks drawn on foreign banks range between three to eight weeks.
Tips and warnings
- If you do not have an account at the bank that issued the check, the bank can decline to cash your check.
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- Bankrate: Foreign checks can mean long wait for funds
- Banking Questions: Can I Cash a Foreign Check in the U.S.?
- U.S. Department of the Treasury: Answers and Solutions for Customers of National Banks: Answers About Cashing Checks: Why doesn't a national bank have to cash a check that is drawn on them?