At some point, you’ll probably deposit a check made out to someone else. Whether it’s for an elderly relative or an old friend who needs help with bills, it’s nice to be able to help them out. Can you deposit someone else’s check in your account? Yes, you can!
But what happens if the check bounces or if there are insufficient funds in the account? Then you might end up paying for the other person’s mistake—and losing money on the transaction because your own bank may require additional paperwork from you before they can process it. So how do you ensure that this doesn’t happen? The answer is simple: by following these three steps when endorsing someone else’s check:
What Is an Endorsement?
An endorsement is a signature on the back of a check.
- When you deposit someone else’s check, you are endorsing it in order to transfer ownership of the funds from the person who wrote it to your bank account.
- This is sometimes called “signing over” and makes up part of what is technically known as “checks clearing.”
- Be sure that you have enough money in your account before depositing someone else’s check, or otherwise, ensure that they will cover any overdraft fees that result from this transaction!
According to financial advisors like SoFi, “Check’s often say “do not write, stamp or sign below this line” beneath the endorsement area. You’ll want to try to avoid running into this area. If you do, the bank may refuse the check.”
Endorsing Someone Else’s Check in Three Steps
- Write the check out to you.
- Sign the check, and then endorse it by signing in the endorsement section, which is usually located at the bottom of the checkbook page where you keep your checks.
- Give that person’s check to your bank for deposit (they should know what to do).
Secure the Check With a Hold
A hold is an amount of money that your bank will not let you withdraw. The hold ensures that the check you are depositing clears and is not canceled by the other party.
For example, if you deposit a $1,000 check and there is no money in your account to cover it, it will be returned to its owner by your bank as soon as possible. Once this happens, the check writer can sue you for breach of contract or fraud because he did not intend for his funds to be immediately withdrawn from his account without his knowledge or permission!
This process takes about ten days from when the check was deposited (after which time there may still be sufficient funds in your account). In order for everything to go smoothly from now on out; however, it is suggested that making sure there are sufficient funds in place before trying again.
Deposit Checks Made Out to Cash
You can also deposit checks made out to cash if you have the account number and routing number of the payee’s bank. This is usually done when someone deposits a check for another person and asks if you will accept it instead of them going to their own bank. If this happens, ask for identification from the person who gave you the check so you know that it is really them who wrote it and whose signature appears on it.
Well, there you have it—three steps to depositing someone else’s check. The key point here? Don’t forget the endorsement! It’s a good idea to ensure that whoever is bringing you the check knows how important it is before they leave home.