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How Stop Payments on Checks Work

Stopping payment on a check involves contacting the bank where the check writer has a bank account. Contacting the merchant and requesting a stop payment or asking that they don’t cash the check is the incorrect way to accomplish a stop payment. The person who wishes to stop payment on the check must have details regarding the check so the bank can find the check and contact the other branches to be on the lookout for the check. The payee, check number, payment amount and date issued must be provided. The costs to do this will vary by bank but most charge between $20 and $40 to stop a check payment.

To stop credit card processing, the person must have all the details of the transaction including the date the payment went through the system. An automatic payment may be a little trickier to stop since the person needs to know when the merchant account will be processing the payment which might vary by a day or two. Contact the credit card company to stop a payment and have all the details handy.

After requesting a stop payment, verify that the stop payment was applied to the account. Contact the bank or credit card company to be sure the stop payment request was processed. It can take days to apply the stop payment to the account and often, the payment can go through in the meantime.

The check or credit card payment can be reissued at a later date, but only after the bank’s stop payment was processed and confirmation of the procedure has been duly noted in the computer system.

Reasons for a Stop Payment

One of the most common reasons for a stop payment is that the check was lost. A stop payment request can be made if the check hasn’t been cashed for over six months too. If the merchant never received the check, a stop payment can be issued on the old check and a new check can be issued.

One of the most controversial reasons for a stop payment of a check is by a person unsatisfied with the service. Inspect or examine a job thoroughly before issuing a check. While a bank won’t question the transaction beyond their own limited requirements, the merchant or contractor can still recoup the money owed along with any trouble it may have caused him or her.


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