Small business owners, usually sole proprietors or side businesses, can deposit a check payable to their personal name in a personal checking or savings account. However, for checks payable to a company or business name that differs from the owner of the bank account, banks require safeguards to prevent fraud and reduce liability. Sole proprietors who use a company name must file a fictitious business name with their county or state and furnish a certificate to their bank as proof of ownership. Banks accept these official business documents and may accept checks written to the business name for deposit.
Visit or call your bank's customer service center to amend your checking account information.
Tell the bank that you want to add a business name (also called a "DBA") to your account so that you can deposit checks made out to your small business.
Provide your Social Security number or tax ID number, government-issued ID and checking account number.
Submit a copy of your business license, fictitious business name certificate or certificate of trade name as proof that you own the business to be added to your account.
Write the business name on the back of the check (called endorsing) and make sure it matches the business name on your account and the name to whom the check is made payable.
Write the account number of your checking account, if applicable (some banks recommend that you write the account number for deposit). Complete a deposit slip if applicable (depending on bank policies).
Submit the endorsed check and deposit slip to a bank teller or ATM (depending on your bank policies and your account).
Photocopy the business check to keep a record of the payment and deposit (checks may not be returned to you).
Account policies for personal and business checking accounts vary by state law and bank policies, so be sure to consult your bank's customer service for details regarding depositing and accepting business checks into a personal account. Some banks that don't accept business checks deposited into a personal account (called co-mingling) may decline payment and send the check back to the issuer. Check your bank's policies regarding check acceptance. Some banks may require a business checking account if they don't amend personal account information to link a DBA business name. Do not write on the front of the check or alter the name on the check because it may be flagged and declined.
- Bank of America: Small Business Checking and Savings Application
- LLC-Made-Easy.com: How to Deposit a Check Written to Your Business
- Money Blue Book: Depositing a Business Check into a Personal Bank Account
- Harris Bank: Handbook for Personal and Business Deposit Accounts
- Financial Crisis 2009: Deposit Business Check Into Personal Account