People issue checks to make payments of all kinds, which are then cashed or deposited in banks directly or through mobile devices. Because many people cash a check more than once, many people have experienced problems using bank checks over the years. Among these problems is the question of whether checks expire. Do checks become void, according to them? Continue reading this article to know more. Let us know about “Do Checks Expire?”
Do Checks Expire
Even though checks do not have an end date or an expiration date, they might get stale over time and unable to be deposited in banks. According to the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC), checks become stale after 180 days (6 months) without being cashed, and banks are not permitted to accept stale checks. However, banks occasionally accept checks they deem valid for a deposit, and the decision to accept or reject stale checks lies with the banks. Therefore, it is advised to paychecks right away before they expire. Additionally, how a check expires differs depending on the type of check you are dealing with.
Types Of Checks And Their Durations
As stated above, the duration before a check becomes stale varies. So here is a detailed explanation of various types of checks and their durations.
- US Treasury Or Tax Refund Checks
In general, US Treasury checks are good for one year from the date of issuance. If it is not cashed or deposited after a year it becomes stale. But the timeframe differs from state to state, so it would be wise to ask about your state policy regarding this type of check. You can ask for a replacement check from the US Treasury if you lost your check or failed to deposit them after six months.
- Personal Checks
This type of check becomes stale after 180 days (6 months) of issuing and not being deposited. However, banks do accept these types of checks; whether they do so or not is up to each bank. Some banks don’t look at the dates, while others may choose to ignore them, especially if the person in question is a committed customer of the bank.
- Travelers Checks
This type of check does not expire and does not become stale. It is always open for being deposited, as long as the issuer of the check is still in business.
- Money Orders
Just like traveler’s checks they do not expire or become stale, but if held for too long before deposit or cash, it will lead to you being charged a fee from the initial amount to be cashed. And the more the delay, the higher the fees. So cashing money orders on time not only saves you from stress but also extra costs.
- Cashier Checks
This type of check has no specific time of becoming stale, its duration differs from state to state, but the time frame ranges from 60-180 days. In some other states, cashier checks do not become stale. Cashier checks not being deposited over a long period leads to the banks giving the check to the state as unclaimed property. This process is called “escheating”
- Business Checks
This type of check is similar to personal checks, but they are more professional. These checks become stale after 180 days (6 months) after issuing and they can be shorter than this because of security reasons.
- Blank Checks
Blank checks do not expire. A blank check has no information in it hence it cannot expire or become stale. But once information has been written on it then and only can it become stale, but when it is blank it forever remains okay and good.
Some Reasons To Deposit Check On Time
There are a lot of complications that come with delay and such can be seen when you forget or delay depositing a check. Hence, here are some reasons why you need to deposit checks early:
The account through which the cheque was issued may have been closed by the issuer.
When you want to deposit the check, the issuer may not have sufficient money since they believe the check has already been cashed and don’t see any reason to maintain any money in their account.
If a check is not cashed for an extended length of time, the issuer may request to stop payment because they may suspect suspicious activity and wish to be careful.
To avoid problems and additional fees, it is advisable to cash checks before they usually become void after 60 to 180 days.
Checks do not expire, but rather they become stale, and this means that they become void and invalid, and under UCC laws such checks should not be accepted in banks, however, some banking institutions do accept these checks based on some reasons. Depending on the type of check, there are different time frames with which it can become stale. To guarantee that you receive your money and to save additional stress and expenses, it is advisable to deposit checks on time.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Can I Deposit An Old Check?
Yes, but it will depend on the bank to accept it because legally it is not to be accepted by banks, but it can still be accepted if the bank still considers the check good.
- When Does A Check Become Stale?
It varies from check to check, however, the time frame is from 60-180 days.