What is certified check and its definition

You always make use of a certified check while making most of the important transactions, which could be paying for a loan, home or a car, etc. And by using the check the receiver of the payment is also insured that you will pay the amount due, as the certified check-in itself is a payment guarantee. So, let us first understand What is a certified check?

What is a certified check?

A certified check meaning is basically termed up as a personal check issued by the bank where the bank guarantees that there is enough cash available in the bank holder’s account. Moreover, the account holder’s signature is also verified on the certified check.

Therefore, the risk of a transaction is reduced while using the certified check from the bank.

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How to get a certified check?

Finding a bank that offers certified checks is difficult. But you can pay a bank certified check by visiting the bank branch, where the bank will verify you as the owner, and the availability of the sufficient funds in your account is also verified.

  • After the verification process the bank, usually:
  • Add a stamp and signature to the check, and
  • Some limits or conditions are also mentioned with this.

Note: the condition prevents the bank owner to prevent the check writer from using or withdrawing the funds.

Cost of a certified check

The Cost of a certified check may vary from bank to bank. For example, $ 15 is the Cost of a certified check by Santander Bank, whereas it charges $ 10 for an officially certified bank check and $ 5 for a basic money order. And on the contrary $ 20 is the Cost of certified check by The Bank of Akron, where it charges only $ 5 for a cashier’s check. So, USAA certified check cost, cost of the bank of America certified check, etc will be different.

Thus, you need to check with your bank for the Costing of a certified bank check.

Use of a certified check:

A certified check can be used for the purpose of payment or to be precise large payments. As in simple usage you can write a check and use it for the payment purpose, while a certified check issued by the bank eventually reduces the risks of the payment for both the parties in the transaction.

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Where to get a certified check?

You can get a certified check easily by following these simple steps which are as:

Step 1: You need to contact your bank or credit union to get the certified check.

Step 2: Make sure your bank or credit union offers the certified check.

Step 3: Make sure you hold enough funds to make the payment for the certified check.

Step 4: You can take the help of a customer service representative to fill out your certified check properly.

Step 5: If asked by the bank or the institution, you need to show up your personal ID proof to the bank or institution.

Step 6: Pay the required amount of fees charged by the bank or institution for issuing a certified check.

Step 7: Keep the receipt of the check certified, as a proof for the payment. Though, certified check payment usually takes 1 business day to get cleared.

So, you can get your certified bank check from the banks or from the credit unions or from the institutions offering them.

Other Alternatives to a Certified Check

Some of the Other Alternatives options, which you can persuade to a Certified Check are as:

  • Money orders:

Money Order is basically an amount of money that you pay for paying a bill or settling a small number of transactions. It is mainly done by filling out a form and signing the same. Money orders can be purchased from a post office, retail store or supermarket other than purchasing it from the banks. So, it could be a better alternative option available, especially when you don’t have enough money in your account to hold.

  • Bank transfers:

You can directly transfer money from one bank account to another by using simple means of electronic transfer or e-transfer. Though, they are usually free of cost.

  • Wire transfers:

Wire transfers are also used to transfer money from one account to another account. Though, Wire transfers are speedy as compared to the bank transfer or electronic transfer or e-transfer. But it involves certain fees depending upon the bank.

  • Money-transfer apps:

Another way by which you can transfer money from one account to another is by using money-transfer apps such as PayPal, Venmo, etc. These are also secured ways of transferring money and making payments.

Note: But you should always stay safe from the certified check scams, which also include fake certified checks and some complex schemes, etc that can exist to fool around the individuals.

Cashier’s check vs certified check

A certified check acts as a personal check, though here the bank first receives the payment from the account holder and then issues the check, acting as a cashier. While this is not in case of a certified check, where your account balance is used for the amount of the check.

As, in case of a certified check, the check is written by the account holder and certified by the bank.

Though, both the certified check as well as cashier’s check are considered as official checks. And used for the payment purpose. And you need to pay a fee associated with the issuance of check-in both the cases depending upon the type of account you hold.

Certified Check Vs Money Order

Money Order is basically an amount of money that you pay for paying a bill or settling a small number of transactions. Filling out a money order is quite simple, which also involves a fee for the same.

Though certified checks are different involving transactions for a big or huge amount, and also verification by the bank is needed, where the certified check is also presented by the bank. And the bank itself holds the funds until the payment of the amount mentioned in the certified check is done.

Certified check vs personal check

Although, both the certified check and the personal check are a form of an official check, where the personal check is used by an individual or a person for his own use or for the payment purpose, but in case of a certified check, it is also used for the payment purpose by an individual, where the bank verifies the amount in the bank and freeze the balance on the amount mentioned in the check for the payment purpose. So, the payment of a personal check is not confirmed, yet the payment in a certified check is confirmed.

Is certified check safe?

As certified checks act as the official checks, which are guaranteed by a bank. So, certified checks are safe and less susceptible to fraud. Though, you should still be aware of the fraudulent activities concerning the check.

Can a certified check be canceled?

Yes, certified check be cancelled only in case when it is lost or stolen. But the bank can only cancel the certified check after a period of 90 days. In this case, the bank immediately stops the payment and cancels the transaction for the same, moreover offers the check purchaser a full refund of the amount. Though, you should note that a cancelled certified check is different from the Voided check, as void check cannot be used for the payment but only for the information purpose.

What does a certified check look alike?

The check also has a bank representative signature section, where the bank representative sign’s the check apart from the other common sections such as your name and your account number, payee, etc. So, the certified check looks different from the normal day to day check.

What is a chase certified check?

A chase certified check is a check which the account holder has to make to a payee and it is authenticated by the bank, while all the other rules are the same in case of the chase certified check.

Disadvantages of having or issuing a Certified Checks

Payment: Once you have issued the certified check, then there is no going back as you can not cancel it. As the funds of the amount in the check are frozen and will be utilized to pay the amount.

  • Fees: Using a certified check does involve paying a necessary fee, which is charged by the banks accordingly.
  • Fraud: Certified checks are easy to copy, thus leading to high chances of fraud.


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