Technology is making banking safer and more convenient decade after decade. ATMs, automated payments and deposits, and electronic bill pay are all technological advancements that have created today's banking environment.
Check 21 is a federal law that permits financial institutions to replace original checks with "substitute checks" to make check processing faster. Check 21 is designed to increase the efficiency and security of check processing with the use of electronic image technology.
Check 21 Quick Facts:
- Checks are handled by many financial institutions before clearing and posting to your account.
- Any financial institution involved in the clearing process may choose to replace your original check with a "substitute check", a check similar in size to original checks with a slightly reduced image of the front and back of the original check.
- The front of the substitute check says: "This is a legal copy of your check. You can use it the same way you would use the original check." You may use a substitute check as proof of payment as it must be accepted in the same way as the original.
- Check 21 results in enhanced security and faster detection of fraud with less paper to process and store.
- Your payments may clear faster when made by check so be sure you always have sufficient funds in your account before you write any check.
- Some or all of the checks that you can see on line may be substitute checks.
In certain cases, federal law provides a special procedure that allows you to request a refund for losses you suffer if a substitute check is posted to your account (for example, if you think that we withdrew the wrong amount from your account or that we withdrew money from your account more than once for the same check).
If you believe that you have suffered a loss relating to a substitute check that you received and that was posted to your account, please contact a Personal Banker at 1.800.672.3343 to make a claim for a refund. You must contact us within 40 calendar days of the date that we mailed (or otherwise delivered by a means to which you agreed) the substitute check in question or the account statement showing that the substitute check was posted to your account, whichever is later. We will extend this time period if you were not able to make a timely claim because of extraordinary circumstances.
Your claim must include:
- A description of why you have suffered a loss (for example, you think the amount withdrawn was incorrect);
- An estimate of the amount of your loss;
- An explanation of why the substitute check you received is insufficient to confirm that you suffered a loss; and
- A copy of the substitute check and/or the following information to help us identify the substitute check: (identifying information, for example the check number, the name of the person to whom you wrote the check, the amount of the check).
For more information regarding Check 21, visit the following website: