Walmart Check Cashing Policy Guide: How to Cash a Check at Walmart
Are you looking for a way to cash a check at Walmart without having to rely on a checking or savings account? You can get by without opening a checking or savings account at a local or global bank. This is especially the case if you conduct financial affairs using credit cards, virtual currency, and/or cash.
Walmart will serve as an option for checking cashing services to banks. You might want to use Walmart to cash a check if you don’t have access to a bank account, need to cash a check quickly outside of a bank’s regular hours, if you need the money quickly, or if the check is approaching expiration.
For small checks, especially checks under $50, the fee may not be worth it. Most banks offer competitive or free check cashing to customers and non-customers, but if the restrictive hours or locations of a bank are problematic, Walmart can be a safe choice.
Remember that the requirements for cashing a check are the same everywhere; you’ll need to endorse the check and provide a photo I.D.
What Types of Checks Can Be Cash?
Walmart is very strict with the kinds of checks that are accepted for its check-cashing services as check fraud is a problem.
Therefore, only the following checks can be cashed:
- Payroll checks
- Government checks
- Tax refund checks
- Cashiers’ checks
- Insurance settlement checks
- 401(k), retirement disbursement checks
- MoneyGram money orders issued at a Walmart
As you can see, personal checks are not included in the list. Walmart will cash preprinted checks, as in those where the check isn’t handwritten.
The types of checks that Walmart won’t cash include:
- Handwritten checks
- Personal checks
- Checks with multiple payees
- Checks dated more than 180 days prior
- Post-dated checks
- Non-MoneyGram money orders
- MoneyGram money orders not issued at Walmart
Walmart Check Cashing Fees and Restrictions
- $4 for checks up to $1,000;
- $8 for checks above $1,000;
- Card cashing (taking cashing money out of a bank card) carries a $3.74 transaction fee and are limited to $1,000 per day;
- Two-party checks carry a maximum charge of $6 and a cashing limit of $200;
- The maximum limit for check cashing is $5,000, or $7,500 from January to April.
Compared to non-customer check cashing at banks, cashing a check at Walmart can be cheaper or more expensive, depending on the bank you’re looking at.
Some banks cash checks for free, some cash them for $7-10, and some are free up to $50 with a fee after that.
For amounts under $50, it might be wiser to use bank service, as it’s likely to be free even if you don’t hold an account. For larger amounts, Walmart could be cheaper than non-member bank services.
If you hold a bank account, however, it’s entirely likely that cashing a check with your bank will be much cheaper than using Walmart.
Walmart’s hours make it a good option in an emergency, as they are much more forgiving of a 9-5 work schedule.
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Walmart has a simple limit for check-cashing: $5,000 per check.
During the months of January through April, this limit is increased temporarily to $7,500 to accommodate the larger checks that customers might bring in as a result of their tax refunds.
Funds Payment Methods
There are two ways to receive the cashed funds:
- Reloading a Walmart MoneyCard
When you choose to load the funds onto a Walmart MoneyCard, the typical reload fee is waived.
The Walmart MoneyCard option is a decent choice if you already use the prepaid card account regularly as part of your financial system.
Compared to Cashing Checks at a Bank
When you receive a check, you can go to the bank that issued the check to cash it — no need to deposit it into your own bank account. The paying bank will verify the check immediately and pay out the funds to the check recipient.
However, this usually comes at a cost. Banks may charge a non-customer check-cashing fee, which could be a fixed amount or percentage of the cashed amount.
There are the costs of cashing checks at banks as a non-customer:
Cost of Cashing Checks for Non-Customers
|Bank||Non-Customer Check Cashing Fee|
|Bank of America||$8 per check for amounts greater than $50.00|
|BB&T||Free under $50; Over $50 a fee of $8|
|BMO Harris Bank||$10 ($50 is the minimum amount you can cash)|
|Citibank||Free for checks under $5,000|
|Fifth Third Bank||1% of the check amount ($4 minimum and $25 maximum)|
|HSBC Bank||Free for personal checks; $3 for business checks under $100 and $5 for business checks of $100 or more|
|KeyBank||1.0% of the check amount ($3 minimum and $25 maximum)|
|M&T Bank||2% of the check amount ($3 minimum)|
|PNC Bank||Free for checks $25 and under; 2% of the check amount for checks greater than $25 ($2 minimum)|
|Regions Bank||Free under $10, but above $10, 1% of the check amount ($2 minimum and $20 maximum)|
|SunTrust||Free for checks $50 or under; $7 if greater than $50|
|Union Bank||$10 fee for personal checks over $100; $10 for business checks over $25|
Like Walmart, banks will require identification before the disbursement of funds. Usually, banks ask for two (2) forms of government-issued ID.
More expensive, but more accessible
Compared to Walmart, banks tend to charge a higher fee to cash a check.
However, you may find that it is more convenient to go to a bank branch because there are simply more of the bank’s locations than the number of Walmart stores in your area.
Personal checks cashed
Another big difference is that banks will cash your personal checks (again, if issued by that bank).
These are the checks that are handwritten and are considered too risky to cash by Walmart.
If you have a personal check and you don’t have your own bank account, you may have no choice than to visit the issuing bank to cash the check. As a result, the non-customer check-cashing fee is likely to be unavoidable.
Unlike Walmart, banks have no stated limits on the size of the check that they’ll cash.
If the check funds are verified to be available, the bank shouldn’t limit the payment.
So, even if you have a preprinted check, the amount may exceed the limits accepted by Walmart. Again, this forces you to use the issuing bank (or a bank account).
Walmart offers a check-cashing alternative for consumers — cheaper than banks and even cheaper than mom-and-pop check-cashing stores. The downsides are the restrictions on the types of checks and check amounts.
Ideally, the checks are deposited into a checking account. People who struggle to get approved for a traditional checking account may consider applying for an online checking account or a second-chance checking account.
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