Dividend checks are mailed out on anywhere from an quarterly to monthly basis on some stocks (it depends on the stock you own, as not all stocks pay out dividends). However, if you recently discovered an old dividend check in your mail, it is a good idea to cash the funds, since the dividend is of no value as a piece of paper. Depending on how old the dividends check is, you may need to jump through a few hoops before being able to cash it.
Look over the old dividend check for an expiration date. Depending on the issuing bank, there may or may not be an expiration date listed. If not, you may cash the check whenever you see fit. If there is an expiration date and you have passed the date, you must obtain a newly issued check.
Contact the company you own the stock with. There is a financial department you may request to be directed to. Once connected, inform the customer service representative of your situation. From here, the individual may either be able to reissue your check or redirect you to someone who has the authority to reissue the check. Do note that it is going to take a few weeks to receive the newly issued dividend check.
Take your check into your local bank. It is best to take your check into a bank that knows you, as some banks have regulations against accepting checks from individuals that do not have an account through them.
Sign the back of the check and request it to be cashed.
- check in macro image by Alexey Klementiev from Fotolia.com