How to Endorse a Canadian Check

Endorse a Canadian cheque the same way you would a U.S. check.
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If you regularly do business with Canadian citizens or companies, or if you live near the Canadian border, you're probably familiar with Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) check endorsement. Endorsement for Canadian checks is very similar to that of United States checks. However, there are some other things that you need to know.

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RBC Check Endorsement

According to RBC Bank, to endorse an RBC check (or another Canadian check), first flip the check over so the back is facing up. This side is almost entirely blank and does not contain critical information such as the account holder's information or the dollar amount.

Locate the signature line, which should be marked. You will see at least one line. It may have an X on it to indicate that you should sign there. However, if you don't see this signature line clearly marked, sign on the side away from the account holder's address and closest to the date on the front of the check.

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Types of Endorsements

One type of endorsement is a blank endorsement. Blank endorsements are not those without anything written on the check, but instead those that have no additional requirements. If you want the check to be for deposit only, you can add that phrase, which makes it a restrictive endorsement.

The third kind of check endorsement is called an endorsement in full. If you wish to sign the check over to someone else, you will need to write "Pay to the order of" and then fill in that person's name and sign it. These endorsement methods can be used on a Canadian check, although you may need to appear in person with the depositor for a full endorsement. Once the check is endorsed according to your needs, you may deposit it.

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Depositing Canadian Checks Into U.S. Accounts

Major American banks that accept third-party checks include Bank of America, Chase and US Bank. However, you are almost always required to make these deposits in person at the bank with a teller; mobile deposit and ATM deposit may not be available for foreign checks. If you use a credit union, local bank or other financial institution, check with them about their foreign deposit requirements.

You may also end up waiting a long time for the check to clear. This waiting period could be much longer than checks from other American banks. It may seem silly if you know that the payer has the funds in their account, but your America-based bank doesn't know that. What's more, the American banks don't have the simple systems in place necessary to check balances and guarantee funds.

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Therefore, you may wait up to 10 days or more for the funds to appear in your account. Your bank must wait for the Canadian institution to receive the check itself and then transfer the funds; only then will the money appear in your account. Be aware that your deposit may carry steep foreign transaction fees, which are typically unavoidable unless you have an account with special terms. If you conduct a lot of business with Canadian companies or clients, this is something you should consider to avoid these recurring fees.

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