Where does one cash a check from the Financial Management Service?
May 31, 2006 12:31 PM   Subscribe

Cluelessfilter: So I got an income tax refund and the only organizations marked on the check are 'United States Treasury' and 'Treasury / Financial Management Service'. Where is such a check cashed?
posted by Firas to Work & Money (21 answers total)
The bank where you have your checking account will cash the check for you -- am I missing something?
posted by The Bellman at 12:37 PM on May 31, 2006

just deposit it in your bank account.
posted by rbs at 12:37 PM on May 31, 2006

The.. bank? An ATM? Is this a free-form rhetorical question? If so, I'll go first and say Madagascar.
posted by kcm at 12:37 PM on May 31, 2006

I think the posters refers to a situation where one can cash a check (literally exchange the check for cash) at the issuing bank.
posted by exogenous at 12:40 PM on May 31, 2006

If you have a bank account, deposit it as if it were any other check. If you don't, since it's from the U.S. Treasury, pretty much any bank would take it, although some banks will charge fees for non-members cashing checks.
posted by cactus at 12:42 PM on May 31, 2006

I'm assuming Firas is asking because he lacks a checking account. Apparently, Wal-mart will cash tax refund checks at no charge.
posted by base_16 at 12:43 PM on May 31, 2006

If you don't have a bank account some supermarkets will give no charge credit for a goverment cheque.
posted by Mitheral at 12:44 PM on May 31, 2006

Ah, yeah, I'm looking specifically to get the cash directly rather than deposit it (my bank account is in deeper negatives than the value of the refund (damn overdraft fees), so I'm waiting for a larger check in a couple days but meanwhile I'd like to eat and stuff). The usual way of doing so is to go to a branch of the bank that issued the check, right? I guess I'm out of luck?
posted by Firas at 12:44 PM on May 31, 2006

Firas, as base_16 posted, you can apparently cash the check at Walmart at no charge.

Tax refunds usually come from the US Treasury, unless they are handled through some third party.

You could also sign the check over to a friend or colleague who has a bank account, then have them cash the check at their bank and give you the money. The way to do this is to endorse (sign) the check on the back, then underneath your signature write "pay to the order of ___________" and fill in the blank with your friend/colleague's name.
posted by cahlers at 12:53 PM on May 31, 2006

You could also sign the check over to a friend or colleague who has a bank account, then have them cash the check at their bank and give you the money.

Lots of banks have stopped doing this. I'm not sure whether it's actually illegal now for anti-terra reasons, or whether the banks just are trying to protect themselves from fraud, but I'd definitely check with the bank before endorsing it over.
posted by kindall at 1:00 PM on May 31, 2006

anti-terra reasons

do you mean "anti-terrorist"? In any case my wife and I do this all the time, I have not heard that banks don't do that. Nevertheless, if this is one of the few options Firas has, what's wrong with pursuing it? Especially if this saves fees.
posted by cahlers at 1:09 PM on May 31, 2006

I have not heard that banks don't do that.

Mine (Chase) doesn't-- and I've heard that more and more banks are cracking down on this for government-issued checks. Regular personal checks seem to be fine. So yes, check it out before you endorse it.
posted by idest at 2:13 PM on May 31, 2006

Bank of America also frowns on cashing double endorsed checks, but will cash gov't checks for non-account-holders (for a fee in some places, but not in Mass).
posted by Rock Steady at 2:28 PM on May 31, 2006

I guess I never cah a check, just deposit them, even if double-endorsed.
posted by cahlers at 3:00 PM on May 31, 2006

do you mean "anti-terrorist"?

Yeah, anti-terra.
posted by kindall at 4:03 PM on May 31, 2006 [1 favorite]

Yeah, anti-terra.

I don't understand this. There is no such expression.
posted by cahlers at 5:19 PM on May 31, 2006

I don't understand this. There is no such expression.

There is if you say it with a Texas accent, possibly while pretending to be addressing the nation from the Oval Office.
posted by scody at 5:24 PM on May 31, 2006 [1 favorite]

Yep. "Double endorsed" (aka third-party) checks are definitely frowned upon at BoA and many other banking institutions for security reasons. I can speak for BoA personally, having worked for the corporation before and currently banking there now. Customers will still try to come in and cash/deposit a check that wasn't originally written out to them, and only in the rarest circumstances (e.g. the customer's story is particularly gripping) will the bank manager OK the transaction. So I'd caution against trying to sign over his check to someone else who has a bank account that's not in the negative. Try a grocery store or Wal-Mart, or see if a bank convenient to you will cash your check without a fee.
posted by emelenjr at 5:26 PM on May 31, 2006

You can also try asking your bank to remove the overdraft fees. Sometimes they do and it's not likely that they'd charge you a fee for asking.
posted by stavrogin at 9:22 PM on May 31, 2006

Weird that banks don't honor third party checks any more. Is it just that the rate of fraud s higher on them?
posted by hattifattener at 12:53 AM on June 1, 2006

Update! So I went to a supermarket's customer service thingie (which had Western Union signs on it, so I guess that's whom I got rather than a supermarket person per se) and she said "Do you have a check cashing card with us?" Me: "No, what's that" She: "I could give you one but we don't cash refund checks."

Then I walked into a random bank and they said they don't do it for non-customers.

Then I tried to get to a bank of America branch that was still open but I got there just as the guy turned the lock in the door. Gah.

Then I was directed to 'a check cashing place' where they happily took it.

So the answer is: find a 'check cashing place' or try a branch of your own bank.

Then I spent it all on ephemera and now I'm back to square one. Hmmm.
posted by Firas at 12:42 PM on June 1, 2006

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