If you travel between the United States and Canada, or if you live in Canada and do business with clients in America, it's very likely that one day you'll need to cash a U.S. check in Canada. Because the countries border each other, most Canadian banks have a system in place to make this transaction easy and fast.
Find out whether a check cashing business, such as a Money Mart, is nearby. Money Marts will instantly give you cash for a U.S. check in exchange for a small fee. If the fee isn't listed on the website, call the business to find out the cost.
If a check cashing business is not located near you, find out what banks are nearby. Contacts banks to find one that has a branch or ATM that allows non-account holders to cash U.S. checks. You'll be charged a fee for this transaction.
If you can't find a bank that cashes checks from non-account holders, you'll need to open an account in order to cash your U.S. check. Canadian law requires a waiting period before deposited checks can be cashed. The wait depends on the check's value. At TD Canada Trust, accounts less than 90 days old have a maximum waiting period of five days. Checks drawn on a U.S. bank have a 15-day waiting period. Other banks have a longer waiting period. At Citizens Bank for example, checks for greater than $7,500 may take up to four to six weeks to process.
If you cash U.S. checks frequently in Canada, you should open a bank account specifically for this function. TD Canada Trust offers U.S. Dollar Accounts for business done wholly with U.S. currency. RBC Bank has Cross-Border accounts that offers unlimited transfers between its Canadian and U.S. branches.
With features published by media such as Business Week and Fox News, Stephanie Dube Dwilson is an accomplished writer with a law degree and a master's in science and technology journalism. She has written for law firms, public relations and marketing agencies, science and technology websites, and business magazines.