Making sure funds are available for a check that you received can help you avoid bank fees from a bounced check. Citibank offers verification services for checks written from its accounts. However, the bank cannot guarantee that the check will clear before it is deposited and processed.
Ask a Teller
To verify a check written by a Citibank account holder you must go into a physical branch and speak with a teller. Citibank will not verify a check over the phone or through any online services, such as email. Take the check in question with you to the bank and present it to the teller. Be prepared to verify your identity as the check payee by showing the teller a valid form of picture identification, such as a driver's license or a passport.
The teller will only be able to tell you if the check writer's bank account has enough funds to cover the check at that very moment. She cannot guarantee that the funds will still be available by the time the check is deposited and processed. Additionally, the teller will not reveal any personal information about the payer's account, such as the overall balance. She will simply let you know if the available funds will or will not cover the check at that specific time.
Consider cashing the check while you are at the Citibank branch if you are concerned about the funds disappearing before the check is processed. You do not need your own Citibank account to cash a check written from the payer’s Citibank account.
Check Fraud Schemes
If you receive a Citibank check that seems suspicious, take the time to verify it. Citibank warns that fraudulent check schemes can come about in numerous ways, but one common trait is that you will be asked to deposit the check and then wire some or all of the funds back to the sender. By the time the original check bounces, your money will be long gone and not recoverable. Take any check that you receive in an odd or distrustful way to a Citibank branch for verification.
You are responsible for the checks that you deposit into your account. Even if you verify a check with Citibank, if the check bounces or is fraudulent, you will likely be responsible for any fees related to the check being not valid.