It’s common for things like tax refunds to be paid by check. The problem is that, without a regular bank account, it’s not always clear how to cash a check without an ID. So, now you have money in your hand with no way to spend it…frustrating, isn’t it?
What Forms of ID Are Considered Acceptable?
Every major bank and even the check cashing places that don’t require ID near me have their own policies on how you can prove who you are. They sometimes ask for additional forms of identification, too, especially if you’re a new customer or are trying to take out a large sum. So, it’s a good idea to bring along a utility bill or credit card if you plan to cash a check without an ID.
For the most part, though, any of the following will work:
- A driver’s license or another kind of state-issued photo ID. Out-of-state documents are usually okay, but not always.
- A U.S. passport. Passports from foreign countries may not be accepted or can make the transaction take longer.
- A U.S. military ID. Remember that many banks give special breaks to veterans and current service members.
Is It Common to Cash a Check Without an ID?
In theory, everybody’s identity has to be checked and verified when cashing a check. In practice, this just isn’t always possible: driver’s licenses get lost or stolen, foreign travelers and recent immigrants may not have the right documents, and many Americans have just never bothered to get an ID for a variety of reasons.
So, can you cash a check without an ID (legally)? The answer is definitely “yes” as long as the money is yours. It happens all the time.
Ways to Cash a Check Without Your Own ID
Here are a few tips on how to cash a check without an ID:
Use PayPal or Venmo
Both PayPal and Venmo require proof of ID to sign up with them. Once you’ve done so, though, you can cash checks to your digital wallet without having to show your ID every time. The process is ridiculously simple: you basically just open their app and take a photo of the check.
This can be a great option if you’ve recently lost your wallet and dread going to the DMV for a new driver’s license. It’s not something you should rely on forever, though. Since quite recently, users of both services in the state of New York are no longer allowed to make use of this feature. It’s entirely possible that this ban will be extended to other states sometime in the future.
Deposit It at One of Your Bank’s ATM
In much the same way as with PayPal and Venmo, most banks assume that you’re still the same person you were when you opened an account with them, using an acceptable form of ID. Some may still not allow check cashing without ID at the counter but will accept the deposit if you do it through an ATM.
This all depends on which bank you’re with, though (and few of us have ever read far enough through their terms & conditions to know). Not all banks allow ATM deposits, and if they do you can only use in-network ATMs. In addition, some let you deposit cash this way, but not checks. Still others allow you to withdraw cash from the check immediately; some force you to wait for the check to clear.
Confused? No wonder. Your best bet is to call or chat with their customer service center, but don’t worry: most banks will accommodate you.
Sign It Over to Another Person
You may have wondered what that “Pay to the order of” box on the back of a check means. Basically, this allows you to sidestep cashing the check completely – you can sign here to effectively change yourself from the recipient to the writer of the check.
This is called “endorsing” the check and no ID is required to do it. Of course, it’s unlikely that you’ll have a bill for the exact same amount. The idea is therefore to find a friend or family member you trust and ask them to accept the endorsed check and give you cash in exchange, probably minus any processing fees.
Be sure to write their full name below your signature, and remember that they will have to produce ID to deposit it. This strategy is of no use if you’re both in the same boat with regard to identification.
Use a Reloadable Prepaid Card
Reloadable prepaid cards are a great option if you can’t open a conventional bank account. In many ways, they’re just like a debit card except that they’re not linked to an account. They’re also safer than cash: with most cards of this type, a lost or stolen card can be replaced without giving up the money on it. Unfortunately, the majority require identification to purchase.
Once you have one, though, if you need to cash a check without ID, they’re very easy to reload. The place you bought the card (many grocery and drug stores have them) will ask for identification if you try to reload your card with a check at the counter, but many prepaid cards offer a mobile check deposit feature. Like with Paypal and Venmo, you only need to take a photo of both sides of your check. After doing this, you can withdraw cash at any ATM.
Want to Take Out a Personal Loan?
If you need to know how to cash a check without an ID, there's a pretty good chance that you don't have a good relationship with any bank. This means that your credit score is probably not great. It will be much harder to take out a loan when you need one.
This is where USBadCreditLoans comes in. Can you cash a check without an ID with us? No, but we know times are tough and money is tight. If I were short of cash, I’d be looking at affordable personal loans before considering check cashing places that don't require ID near me.
How can USBadCreditLoans help you?
- We’re not a bank or lender ourselves – our only business is to set you up with the best.
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- The whole process usually takes under 24 hours from start to payment.
Part of the reason our service is so popular is that it’s completely streamlined. If you’re interested, you only need to do the following:
Step 1: Fill out our simple online form with your personal details. This process is highly secure and very quick.
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Step 3: Sign the contract with the lender. Up to this point, you have no obligation whatsoever.
Step 4: Receive your money, usually the same or next business day. That’s really all there is to it.
How much would you like?
How to Get an ID?
Trying to figure out how to cash a check without ID is annoying, but this is far from the only reason to get one as soon as possible. The easiest way is to go to the DMV: even if you don’t drive, they can issue you a state ID card that’s just as valid as a driver’s license (except on the road).
You’ll need to take along:
- Proof of U.S citizenship
- Proof of residency in the state
- Your Social Security number
If you don’t have all of the above, the process can get a little more complicated. In this case, I suggest you contact either the DMV in your state or a lawyer to figure out your next move.