How possible is it for someone to send a cheque over post right to my address?


I'm not knowledgeable about business stuffs, legal stuff, and so on.

But I was trying to understand, A) how possible is it for someone from another "developed" country to mail a cheque directly to my house? (I live in Singapore)

B) If it's not possible just for just any "developed" country to mail a cheque directly to my house, does limiting the scope to just US and UK make it possible?

C) What gotchas do I have to lookout for? (like specifying that they be in a certain currency, I'm not so bothered by bad rates of currency-changing, but rather more of the fact that that currency doesn't even get accepted in the first place)

D) Say if the cheque is addressed to my name, even if it is intercepted halfway no one could actually cash out the cheque right (unless someone else in the world happen to have an exact full name as me which I believe is hardly possible) ?

I am aware of the fact that until I actually cash in the cheque and can see the actual amount in the bank, I cannot ever gaurantee that the money will reach me because scammers are incredibly intelligent and experienced.


asked Aug 31 '11 at 10:03
317 points

3 Answers


It can be impossible, just difficult, or easy. It depends on what country you are in and what country they are in.

If you are in the US, you can typically only accept checks that are MICR encoded. They usually have to be drawn on a US bank and payable in US dollars. This limits you to US and Canadian checks. People in other countries can go to their bank and pay extra to get a MICR encoded check like that, but they are unlikely to do so.

Note that most of the developed world doesn't use checks all that often. The US is the exception. Checks are being used less and less all over the world. Basing a business on accepting checks seems like a poor idea, especially if the checks come from other countries.

If you are in the US and accept a non-MICR encoded check, your bank will have to send it out for collection. This will cost you from $25 to $45 and take 1 - 3 weeks to collect. If you accept a check that is not in US dollars, your bank may refuse to cash it.

Also note: checks can take a few of days to a month to clear. Don't give the client the work until the check has completely cleared and you have the money. There are many scammers who send fraudulent checks, and you only find out the are bad after the bank rejects them and charges you money for rejecting the check.

You really need to contact your bank in Singapore and ask them what their requirements are to accept a check and what their fees are. The rules in every country are different and individual banks may have different rules.

answered Aug 31 '11 at 11:25
Gary E
12,510 points
  • thanks for the comment =D btw I've updated the question with some more "personal" info, you may wanna take a look at it =P – Pacerier 12 years ago


This is probably more a question for your bank than for your customers (or this forum). Our (UK) bank is happy to take US cheques, and I doubt they'd have problems with ones from other EU countries, and perhaps other developed countries. However, that wouldn't necessarily be true of every bank over here.

answered Aug 31 '11 at 20:11
Giles Thomas
1,540 points


Have you considered taking an alternative form of payment like PayPal? We use this sometimes to pay contractors in India from the U.S. I don't know if PayPal operates in Singapore but should be easy enough to find out.

answered Sep 1 '11 at 07:51
696 points

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