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  Home >> Checks/Money Orders >> Checks You Wrote  
Reasons for Stop Payment

If a customer places a stop payment on a check accepted by a business for services, do regulations require that the reason be noted on the returned check? Should the payee (the business) have the right to obtain the date that the stop payment was requested?

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As a checking account customer, you are entitled to place a stop payment on a check that hasn't yet been paid for any reason, and the reason is really no one's business but yours. Your bank might ask if a replacement check will be issued, just to let them know not to return the wrong check. The date of the stop is the only information that the payee should have access to if there's reason to believe that the bank may have accepted a stop payment on a check that had already been paid (and then returned the check after it had a legal right to do so).

Your second question may be prompted by the fact that most stop payment orders are valid for six months (a bank may extend that period by agreement with its customer). Payees sometimes redeposit a stopped check just after the end of this six-month period and manage to get the check paid. If you are the customer that wrote the check, you really need to renew your stop payment before it expires, to prevent this sort of thing. That's because banks usually do not check the date on checks, and paying a check that's both more than six months old and the subject of an expired stop payment order is legal.



Published on BankingQuestions.com 6/12/07