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How long do checks last?

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Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 1,376

How long do checks last?

I found a check (from work) that I apparently never cashed... from seven months ago.

I'd always thought the limit was six months, but some are telling me it's a year.

And if the limit is only 6 months... Will ADP (the huge payroll company) re-issue the check if I call?

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WHT Addict
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 139
Normally checks will say what date they are good thru. I have deposited a check that was a year old once. Did not cause a problem. Might depend on your local laws as well.


Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 3,299
More than likely, if you deposit it or cash it it will be fine. My bank recently honored a check that I wrote several years ago ...

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Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 7,033
From what I have seen from my checks it is a year. Though it can change I am sure from place to place.

Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Earth
Posts: 1,802
Payroll Checks are good for 90 days, in most cases. Read the check and it should specify such conditions. Call payroll and check with them. You will have to mail this one back and then they reissue a new one.

You can try to deposit this one, but if it fails, it will be returned to you AND your bank will charge you a processing fee. So, check ahead of time before doing the deposit.

rogue element
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Northwest Colorado
Posts: 4,630
If a check expires, it will say so -- "must be cashed within 90 days" or some such. If a check doesn't say that, it never expires. A ten year old check from me may still be cashed, despite the fact that the name of the bank would be wrong, because the account and tracking numbers are the same. Without a specific expiration date noted, a check doesn't expire.

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Web Hosting Evangelist
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 506
Read the back - it will tell you. or if your employee will re-issue you a new one might be easier to just do that

on the side isnt it spelt cheque?

or maybe thats the english way.

Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 1,364
Originally Posted by Jay Suds
More than likely, if you deposit it or cash it it will be fine. My bank recently honored a check that I wrote several years ago ...
Someone must've lost that check good to re-discover it years after it was written.

rogue element
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Northwest Colorado
Posts: 4,630
Originally Posted by BigBison
Without a specific expiration date noted, a check doesn't expire.
(continuing my own thought) This is because a check is essentially my promise to reimburse you for $10. Further, I would prefer everyone would hold my checks for ten years. In the interim, inflation will make it worth less for the recipient than when I wrote the check, and will have earned interest for me to boot. So why would I want my checks to expire?

Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,625
Not sure of the laws in the US; however, in Canada, checks are not legal tender. Technically, even on the date they were written, the banks still don't legally have to accept them - believe it or not.

Checks written in Canada, are generally 2 years. However, keep in mind, that if this is from an employer they are legally obligated to pay you any monies owed - regardless of time frame. So if the check doesn't cash, call the old company and tell them.

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Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Nov 2002
Posts: 4,166
It can also depend on your bank's policies and how nice you are to the teller.

Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 228
I've cashed checks even after they expired ("Only valid within 90 days") etc. I think a lot of laws override that kind of stuff and I think a lot of banks just don't care. Most banking is automated now and things like expiration and post-dating doesn't even work anymore.

Managed Hosting Expert
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: North Yorkshire, UK
Posts: 4,163
Usually 6 months however some business cheques are 60 days.

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Retired Moderator
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Proud She-Geek
Posts: 1,722
Checks are usually considered "stale-dated" after 6 months from the date on the check, unless there is text on there that says something like "Must be cashed within 90 days of issue".

You can try taking it to your bank; they may cash it or they may tell you to get the check reissued.

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Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Pakistan
Posts: 2,752
why do you say checks? the correct spelling is cheque.

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