Rules on Cashing Income Tax Checks at Banks

by W D Adkins
There's no fee to cash a tax refund check where you bank.

If you want to cash a tax refund check at a bank, you’ll need an account there. Banks aren’t required to cash tax refund checks for non-customers and generally won’t do so. You can have tax refunds sent by direct deposit and pull the cash you need as soon as the money shows up. If you choose to get your tax refund in the form of a paper check, there are a few rules you need to keep in mind to cash it at your bank.

Getting the Cash

Federal Reserve Board Regulation CC classifies tax refund checks as next-day deposits. This means you’ll normally be able to cash the check and get your money on the spot. At worst, the funds will be available the next business day. Take the check -- along with a government-issued photo ID, such as your driver’s license -- to the bank. Endorse the check in the presence of a teller. If it’s a joint income tax refund and the bank account is owned by just one party, both people named on the check must be present, endorse the check and show identification. Don’t cash the check if it’s more than you expected until the Internal Revenue Service sends you an explanation. You can cash a tax refund check that’s less than you expected. The IRS will cut another check if you are due more money.

About the Author

Based in Atlanta, Georgia, W D Adkins has been writing professionally since 2008. He writes about business, personal finance and careers. Adkins holds master's degrees in history and sociology from Georgia State University. He became a member of the Society of Professional Journalists in 2009.

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