When someone pays you by check, you must endorse the check before cashing or depositing it. Sign your name in ink on the back of the check where it typically says "Endorse here" or has a line beginning with an "X." Your signature is required to verify that you are approving that the check be cashed or deposited.
Types of Endorsements
Just signing your name on the back of a check is known as a basic endorsement. Technically, once you've signed your name, anyone can cash the check. However, many banks will accept the check only from the person who signed it. You can also do a restrictive endorsement by writing "For deposit only" and your account number in addition to your name, which requires the proceeds be deposited into that account. Finally, you can do a special endorsement where you sign your name and state that the check should be paid to someone else. However, many banks will not accept these so-called third-party checks.