How To Stop Payment On A Lost Check

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If you have a checking account with a United States bank, federal law provides you the right to stop payment on a lost check – but you have to act fast. You would like exact information about the check, and you want to visit a bank branch face to finish the order before the check is presented to the bank. Counting on the circumstances during which you lost the check, you’ll want to think about closing your bank account or reporting possible fraud.

Table of Contents

Canceling the Check

Check your account. Before you initiate an order on the check, you would like to form sure it’s not yet skilled. If your bank has already accepted the check, an order won’t do one any good.

  • Typically, it’s easier to see your recent transactions on your online account, or on your banking mobile app if you’ve got one.
  • Confirm the check has not cleared, and also check your pending transactions to form sure it hasn’t been presented yet. If the check doesn’t appear, take action to initiate the order immediately.
  • If you lost a checkbook, or a series of blank checks, remember that a stop-payment order might not resolve your problems. Your best solution could also be simply to shut your checking account.

Closing Your Account

Assess the potential damage. The fees for a stop-payment order could also be so high relative to the face value to make sure a stop-payment order doesn’t make any sense. Or, if one or several checks were lost or stolen, the potential financial harm could also be great.

  • If the prices outweigh the advantages of getting a stop-payment order, it’s going to make more sense for you merely to shut your bank account. Although switching bank accounts are often a hassle, you will not need to still pay stop-payment fees, or need to worry about whether that check will undergo anyway.
  • Closing your bank account also could be an honest idea if the check was for a big amount of cash. Although the stop-payment fee is comparatively low therein case compared to the quantity of the check, if the check was honored anyway it might be a way bigger deal.

Contact Your Bank and Put an order on the Check

If you think a check has been lost or stolen, you initially got to contact your bank. If the check hasn’t already been cashed, then you’ll request that they put an order thereon. It is a formal request that the check not be paid out by the bank if it’s deposited or presented to be cashed. Stop payments on personal checks usually last for up to 6 months.

You can usually request an order by calling your bank or visiting a branch. Some financial institutions also allow you to try to it online.

Take Preventative Measures

Taking measures to assist prevent your checks from being lost or stolen within the first place can prevent a serious headache.

First, try to not write checks if you do not need to. Most banks and credit unions offer online banking services, and lots of transactions can now be completed online, which eliminates the necessity to write down checks altogether.


  • This text deals with the stop-payment practices of U.S. banks, and your rights under U.S. law. If you reside in another country, contact a customer service representative of your bank or speak with an attorney to seek out what you would like to try to.
How To Stop Payment On A Lost Check

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