Handwritten checks can be either personal checks or, less commonly, payroll checks. These types of checks can be somewhat difficult to cash, as they carry a higher risk than electronically written checks. This means few places that cash checks want to take the risk.

You’re probably wondering, “But where can I cash a handwritten check?”

Included in this article is the list of places that cash handwritten checks…

In This Article

  • Banks and Credit Unions That Cash Handwritten Checks

  • Check Cashing Stores That Cash Handwritten Checks

  • Grocery and Retail Stores That Cash Handwritten Checks

  • Places That Don’t Cash Handwritten Checks (So You’re Not Left Wondering)

  • An Alternative Way to Cash a Handwritten Check

Banks and Credit Unions That Cash Handwritten Checks

If you don’t have a bank account and your grandma wrote your birthday check from her account at Bank of America, for example, you can bring the check to your local Bank of America branch and cash it for a fee of $6. (The specific fee amount will vary by bank — it’s typically between $5 and $8.) The catch is that either you need to have an account at the bank where you go to cash the check, or the check must be written from an account at that bank. For example, you can’t take that same birthday check drawn on Bank of America and take it to Chase to cash it — your check won’t be accepted there (unless you have a Chase account). The same thing applies to credit unions.

Check Cashing Stores That Cash Handwritten Checks

Places that cash handwritten checks do include check cashing stores. These stores are convenient and will typically cash any type of check of any amount, including those written by hand. However, it can do so because a check cashing store often charges a high flat fee plus a percentage of the check amount to cover the risk. If you decide to utilize one of these places, you may want to call and inquire first about the exact fees you will be paying at your location.

1. ACE Check Cashing

2. The Check Cashing Store (Florida)

3. Check Into Cash

4. Check Smart (AZ, IN, KA, KE, MI, MO, OH, UT, VA)

5. Friendly Check Cashing (North Carolina)

6. Money Mart

7. PLS Check Cashing

8. Speedy Cash

9. United Check Cashing

10 USA Check Cashing Store (California)

  • USA Check Cashing Store lists handwritten payroll checks as a type of check it will cash but does not list personal checks. However, it does state “Our team is specially trained and committed to cashing all checks, no matter how big or how small the check amount is” so call your location first.
  • Maximum check amount: Unspecified
  • Fees: Unspecified
  • Find a USA Check Cashing

Grocery and Retail Stores That Cash Handwritten Checks

If a retail store’s check cashing policy doesn’t specifically state in writing that it will cash a handwritten check, it has not been included on this list. If a local favorite store of yours isn’t listed here, leave a comment so we can find out for you within 24 hours.

11. Giant-Eagle

12. Kmart

13. Publix

Places That Don’t Cash Handwritten Checks

You now know of the places that cash handwritten checks. But I know what you’re thinking. “But what about Walmart?! Does Walmart cash handwritten checks??” Nope. Walmart clearly states on its website that check cashing is limited to pre-printed checks.

The following is a list of other popular stores that do not cash checks of any type, handwritten or otherwise. We’d hate to have you left wondering:

  • Aldi
  • BJ’s Wholesale Club
  • Copps
  • Costco
  • CVS
  • Dollar General
  • Dominick’s
  • D&W Fresh Market
  • Food 4 Less
  • Food Lion
  • Gelson’s
  • Heinen’s
  • JayC Foods
  • Jewel-Osco
  • Sam’s Club
  • Trader Joe’s
  • Ukrop’s
  • Walgreens
  • Whole Foods
  • Winn-Dixie

An Alternative Way to Cash a Handwritten Check

You can always endorse the check to a friend or family member.

If you have a friend or family member with a bank account and enough cash to cover the amount of your handwritten check, you can sign the check over to them. If they don’t trust that your handwritten check will clear their bank account, the family member or friend may want to wait to give you the cash until the check clears his or her account. To sign the check over to another person, on the back of the check write: “Pay to the order of:” [the person’s name] [your signature].

In Summary

Because of the risks involved with a handwritten check, retail and grocery stores that will cash handwritten checks are few and far between. Many check cashing stores will do it but they charge high fees. Your best bet is taking the check to the bank or credit union the check is drawn on — or your own bank/credit union.