Many grocery stores offer a check-cashing service as an easy way for their customers to cash payroll checks. The stores usually gain the check casher's patronage, and over time, the practice helps to develop loyal customers who may not have a bank account or otherwise cannot use it. Establishments that offer this service will usually advertise their rules and regulations on check-cashing at their customer-service desk or website.
What You Need
The first thing you will need to cash a check at a grocery store is identification. This can be in the form of a driver's license, a state-issued photo identification card or military identification. Many stores will also ask for a Social Security card. It is important for every store to make sure the right person is cashing the check. Kroger grocery stores use fingerprint authentication through Biometric Access Corporation Secure Touch and Pay System during each transaction to protect against identity theft. Walmart asks that payroll check cashing customers simply endorse the check and provide valid identification at the register.
Both Walmart and Kroger (America's largest grocery retailer) stores charge cashing fees. Walmart charges $4 to cash checks up to, and including, $1,000, while Kroger will cash checks up to $,2000 for $3.50. Both will cash checks up to $5,000, but Walmart lets customers cash checks up to $7,500 from January through April to accommodate those cashing their IRS refund checks. Walmart also offers an alternative to check cashing fees with its Walmart Moneycard. Purchase the card at any store or online, and Walmart will cash your check and put it on the card. In addition to getting cash at most any ATMs, the card can be used anywhere Visa or Mastercard debit cards are accepted. The card is reusable and you don't have to pay a fee each time you load it when making direct deposits or taking advantage of Walmart Check Cashing.
What About Personal Checks?
While you can cash your payroll check at a grocery store, you may not be able to cash a personal check at one – even if it is for payment of work you've done. Typically, grocery stores will cash government checks, tax refund checks, cashiers' checks, checks from insurance settlements as well as 401k retirement disbursement checks. Publix, however, will cash some personal checks and payroll checks, but does not cash tax checks, rebate checks or personal checks that were written to you by another person. If you are unsure whether or not your check will be accepted at your local grocery store, it is best to call ahead and confirm their policies to save yourself an unnecessary trip and added frustration.
- First Quarter Finance: Publix Money Order and Publix Check Cashing Policies (In Plain English)
- Walmart.com: Cashing a check at Walmart
- First Quarter Finance: Does Kroger cash checks? Yes. Here’s the Kroger Check Cashing Policy
- Walmart: Walmart Moneycard
- Walmart: About the Walmart MoneyCard
- Publix: Customer Service FAQ
- Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. "Expedited Funds Availability Act." Accessed April 7, 2020.
- CO-OP Financial Services. "CO-OP Shared Branch." Accessed April 7, 2020.
- Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. "Can I Cash a Check at Any Bank or Credit Union?" Accessed April 7, 2020.
- U.S. Treasury. "U.S. Treasury Check Security Features." Accessed April 7, 2020.
- PNC Bank. "Consumer Schedule of Service Charges and Fees Standard Checking," Page 3. Accessed April 7, 2020.
- Kmart. "Check Cashing." Accessed April 7, 2020.
- Walmart. "Check Cashing." Accessed April 7, 2020.
- Food Lion. "Customer Service." Accessed April 7, 2020.
- Money Services. "Check Cashing." Accessed April 7, 2020.
- American Express. "American Express Serve Prepaid Debit Accounts." Accessed April 7, 2020.
Sarah Brooks has been writing since 2008, contributing articles to various online publications. She previously served as a staff reporter for a daily newspaper in Amsterdam, N.Y. Brooks holds a bachelor's degree in magazine journalism from SUNY Plattsburgh.