If you have a check and the payee line has your child's name on it, you'll have to assist in depositing or cashing it with your bank or credit union. A family member will have to endorse your child's name, as well as sign their own name on the back of the check.
Checks are a great way to teach a minor child about check cashing and having a bank account. A child's check can teach many lessons. Understanding personal finance should start early and a minor child receiving their own checks is an excellent way to start.
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Can I Cash a Check Made Out to My Child?
You can cash a check made out to your child. Take the check to your local bank or credit union where you have a bank account. Ensure that you print your child's name as well as your own name on the back of the check, and then endorse it. You'll also need your driver's license or other forms of ID.
How to Endorse and Deposit a Check Made Out to a Minor
If depositing a minor's check, you want to ensure that it's done correctly. Here are the steps to take to endorse and then deposit the endorsed check:
- Print your child's name on the back of the check.
- After the child's name, insert a hyphen and write the word "minor."
- Under your minor child's name, print your name.
- After your name, insert a hyphen and then write "parent."
- Beneath both printed names, sign your name.
- Fill out a deposit slip with the account number for the savings account or checking account.
- Write the check amount on the deposit slip.
- Present the endorsed check and deposit slip to the bank teller.
The financial institution may ask for the child's birth certificate to verify the minor child's age.
If you are only depositing and don't want any cash back, there is an alternative way to sign the back of the check. On the endorsement line, write the words "for deposit only." This will provide an endorsed check to the financial institution.
The funds should appear in the checking account or savings account the next business day.
Frequently Asked Questions
Whether you want to cash checks for a minor child or deposit them into their own account, personal checks must be endorsed and presented to a financial institution correctly. Good personal finance dictates that you know the proper procedures. Here are some FAQs regarding a child's check.
Can I Deposit the Check via Mobile Deposit?
You can deposit a child's check via mobile deposit if you have a mobile device. All you must do is sign the back of the check "for deposit only" or write "for mobile deposit." Then go into the mobile app and select deposit checks.
A screen will appear that asks you to take a photo of the front of the check. Then you will turn the check over and take a photo of the back of the check.
You will also need to enter the amount on the child's check you wish to deposit. Once you have made the mobile deposit of the minor's check, it should be in the bank or credit union the next business day.
Does the Child Need to Sign the Check?
The child doesn't need to sign their own check. But if they write legibly, letting them sign the check is a great way to teach personal finance. Of course, you will still need to print your name and relationship and sign it.
What if I Am Not the Parent?
It is possible, with parental consent to endorse a check for a minor.
How Do I Set Up a Custodial Account?
Minors cannot own assets like stocks, mutual funds, life insurance policies, etc. A child must have a custodial account established if a parent wants to transfer assets to the child. The custodial account is a trust.
There is also the Uniform Transfer to Minors Act (UTMA). This act allows a minor child to receive a gift without the aid of a trustee or guardian.
The gift giver can appoint a custodian to manage the gift until the child reaches age 18.