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rated:
Hello-

My wife is not on my checking account, but I would like to add her name to our Checks. Is there anything wrong in that?

Thank you

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If you must write a check made out to anything other than CASH or VOID, then you can just use ONLINE BILL PAY.

Having to ... (more)

scripta (Sep. 08, 2017 @ 5:45p) |

Although I'd be happy to pay cash, the little munchkin and her mom who clean my apartment every month like to be paid by... (more)

DTASFAB (Sep. 09, 2017 @ 8:14a) |

I never went as far as printing a complete check.  But I do remember having places require a voided check *with proper n... (more)

cpaynter (Sep. 09, 2017 @ 9:21a) |

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rated:
Yes, that is fraud

rated:
forbin4040 said:   Yes, that is fraud
Fraud against whom

rated:
Well, it's forgery, isn't it?

The account does not belong to OP & Wife, it belong to the OP alone. By adding the wife's name on it, she can now appear to be able to sign for it when such instrument is legally worthless.

We need an bad-idea subforum.

rated:
wakeuprich said:   Hello-

My wife is not on my checking account, but I would like to add her name to our Checks. Is there anything wrong in that?

Thank you

Do you want her to be able to write checks?  Then you need to add her to the bank account.  Otherwise, a check bearing her signature is just a pretty piece of paper.  Not saying the bank won't honor it, but they aren't supposed to.

Or is there some other reason you want her name on the checks?  

rated:
Agree that it sounds like a terrible idea.

But if the intent is to have her name appear so she can sign checks herself or forge OP's signature to write checks, without her being an authorized signer - or a joint owner, I think this is bank fraud on both OP and wife. Best way to get OP's account closed and/or have checks bounce in clearinghouse, I imagine.

If OP does not want wife to be a joint owner, it'd be best to have her an authorized signer so she can legally write checks but without having control over the account.

rated:
Shandril said:   
But if the intent is to have her name appear so she can sign checks herself or forge OP's signature to write checks, without her being an authorized signer

  is that actually a thing if OP is ok with it?

rated:
rufflesinc said:   
Shandril said:   
But if the intent is to have her name appear so she can sign checks herself or forge OP's signature to write checks, without her being an authorized signer

  is that actually a thing if OP is ok with it?

  It's completely legal if she got POA.  Married people do not automatically have Power of attorney, AFAIK.

It's a thing commonly seen on TV court show that stupid people do, it's one variation of "We know it's not legal but s/he was ok with it", until it became NOT ok, and hilarity ensues.

rated:
Yes, it is a BIG thing the first time the bank does it's duty and rejects such a check when the proof department compares the signature.

rated:
rufflesinc said:   
Shandril said:   
But if the intent is to have her name appear so she can sign checks herself or forge OP's signature to write checks, without her being an authorized signer

  is that actually a thing if OP is ok with it?

Yes, as an authorized signer, typically you can withdraw/deposit money, write checks and that's about it. It depends on what the bank allows but that's one-step short of joint ownership. That is something that's often done for older relatives... so you can handle day to day bills for them but don't control the account. Also it usually has to be for the benefit of the account owner but that's probably not gonna come into play until wife starts spending money on the account for stuff that OP wouldn't want her to.

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JW10 said:   Yes, it is a BIG thing the first time the bank does it's duty and rejects such a check when the proof department compares the signature.
  how often does this actually happen without a complaint ?

rated:
Shandril said:   
rufflesinc said:   
Shandril said:   
But if the intent is to have her name appear so she can sign checks herself or forge OP's signature to write checks, without her being an authorized signer

  is that actually a thing if OP is ok with it?

Yes, as an authorized signer, typically you can withdraw/deposit money, write checks and that's about it. It depends on what the bank allows but that's one-step short of joint ownership. That is something that's often done for older relatives... so you can handle day to day bills for them but don't control the account. Also it usually has to be for the benefit of the account owner but that's probably not gonna come into play until wife starts spending money on the account for stuff that OP wouldn't want her to.

  no, i mean is it actually a thing that there's a problem with OP's wife signing without being an authorized signer

rated:
rufflesinc said:   
JW10 said:   Yes, it is a BIG thing the first time the bank does it's duty and rejects such a check when the proof department compares the signature.
  how often does this actually happen without a complaint ?

Probably rarely until there's a problem with a check. But what if wife does not keep as close tabs on the account as OP because she has no access to it (or because she's mad at OP and wants to get back at him lol). She writes a check that bounces due to insufficient funds... Then the bank and the check recipient trying to cash the bounced check will find a lot of wrong with that setup.

Kinda like driving without a license. I've only been stopped once in 20 years for random traffic stop. I'll drive under the speed limit, follow signs and hope to stay under the radar (pun intended). My odds are good to never get caught... 

But is it worth the risk vs. simply doing things legally which in this case costs nothing but a trip to the bank and signing a few forms? 

rated:
Shandril said:   
 Then the bank and the check recipient trying to cash the bounced check will find a lot of wrong with that setup.

 

  like what? THe check bounced, but the bank and the recipient won't know it was the wife signing her husband's name unless they tell them.

rated:
I don't get the reason behind this question. Do you want HER to think she's on your checking account when she is not?

rated:
I don't want her to sign any checks or cash any checks. I would just like her name to appear on our account, when we write personal checks to someone.

Thanks

rated:
wakeuprich said:   I don't want her to sign any checks or cash any checks. I would just like her name to appear on our account, when we write personal checks to someone.

Thanks

  Who would care about such a thing?  

rated:
dcwilbur said:   
wakeuprich said:   I don't want her to sign any checks or cash any checks. I would just like her name to appear on our account, when we write personal checks to someone.

Thanks

  Who would care about such a thing?  

  wakeuprich, for one...

Just add her to the account.  You said you don't want her to write checks or cash checks but you didn't say you don't want her on the account?  Once she's added to the account, order new checks.

rated:
dcwilbur said:   
wakeuprich said:   I don't want her to sign any checks or cash any checks. I would just like her name to appear on our account, when we write personal checks to someone.

Thanks

  Who would care about such a thing?  

  They probably have half the items in their house monogrammed with both of their initials.   Just to make sure any visitors know they're married and don't get any other ideas.

rated:
wakeuprich said:   I don't want her to sign any checks or cash any checks. I would just like her name to appear on our account, when we write personal checks to someone.

Thanks

  
Why?

rated:
Bend3r said:   
dcwilbur said:   
wakeuprich said:   I don't want her to sign any checks or cash any checks. I would just like her name to appear on our account, when we write personal checks to someone.

Thanks

  Who would care about such a thing?  

  They probably have half the items in their house monogrammed with both of their initials.   Just to make sure any visitors know they're married and don't get any other ideas.

  wouldn't the bathrobes etc only have one person's initials

rated:
wakeuprich said:   I don't want her to sign any checks or cash any checks. I would just like her name to appear on our account, when we write personal checks to someone.

Thanks

  Why not just write "wakeuprich  DW" in the memo of each check you write?

rated:
ArbitraryChicken said:   
wakeuprich said:   I don't want her to sign any checks or cash any checks. I would just like her name to appear on our account, when we write personal checks to someone.

Thanks

  Why not just write "wakeuprich  DW" in the memo of each check you write?

  
Better yet, use a photo (wedding photo?) as the background image on the checks.

rated:
My guess is OP wants to appease (new?) wife by showing her he is man enough to have a joint checking account w/o actually providing her a joint checking account.

rated:
It's Fraud because you are presenting an instrument that doesn't belong to you but it 'appears' to belong to you.
Ex : I clone a credit card and change the name from 'Bill Gates' to 'Forbys Top List'. I have committed Fraud.
You are asking to 'clone' a check and add a name on there that wasn't there before. You have committed Fraud on the bank. That check allows the bank to release funds to a party who had no authorization to do so.

Now if the wife signed the husband's name on all his checks, that's forgery.
Ex: I take 'Bill Gates' card and run it through the machine and sign Bill Gates. That's forgery. And BTW Forgery is a subset of Fraud.

The reason I know this is because I worked for a bank years ago.  A lady comes in to cash a check on an account.  The account doesn't have her name but the checks do.  I was went to my manager and report Fraud.  She took me to the files and pointed out the 'Power of Attorney' that the owner put on the account for the lady (I guess she can't get an account or something).  She said that is authorized and is not fraud.  I cashed the check and everyone went on their merry lives.

Now will that work now a days?  No idea, it was a long time ago.  Banks are scrutinized a lot more carefully thanks to WF.

rated:
forbin4040 said:   It's Fraud because you are presenting an instrument that doesn't belong to you but it 'appears' to belong to you.
Ex : I clone a credit card and change the name from 'Bill Gates' to 'Forbys Top List'. I have committed Fraud.
You are asking to 'clone' a check and add a name on there that wasn't there before. You have committed Fraud on the bank. That check allows the bank to release funds to a party who had no authorization to do so.

Now if the wife signed the husband's name on all his checks, that's forgery.
Ex: I take 'Bill Gates' card and run it through the machine and sign Bill Gates. That's forgery. And BTW Forgery is a subset of Fraud.

  The wife signing when not on the account is fraud* (definitely fraud if OP did not give permission, I don't know for sure otherwise.  Credit cards you hand someone your card and say they can go use it and this counts as "authorization").

Actually changing the string in the upper left probably doesn't mean anything at all.  I think you can generally put whatever you want there.  There's no such thing as "cloning' a check.  You're free to make your own perfectly legal checks, even handwritten on the back of a napkin if you want.  Bank may have a policy not to accept the napkin- check, but it's still valid as long as you include the few required components.  Not having additional info I the check is not a requirement.  There is no requirement for account holder's name printed on the check.  No info at all in upper left corner is perfectly valid and temporary checks are often blank in the corner by default, at my bank anyways.  Generally banks do Not require you to order checks through them.  There's several third parties you can go order checks from.  You tell them whatever routing/account numbers, info for upper left corner, and other check design features you want.

A simple answer to OP's question is Yes, he can go order checks from a third party check printer with whatever he wants written on the corner.  No, this does not mean it's legal for non account holders to sign them.  OP may or may not be able to order checks through his actual bank with the extra name in the corner.  I know my bank allows listing one or both account holders when multiple owners are on an account and with or without address.

rated:
I was posting because someone gave me red and the next post said 'It's Forgery not fraud' and got green. I was just informing them they are wrong. It's Fraud.
Even if OP gave her implicit permission, if it isn't in the file of the bank, OP is defrauding the bank.

Banks were forced to allow the 'cloning of checks' a long time ago. (I remember getting 'Checks In The Mail ' back in 1980) I don't remember which policy or law allowed it.  But I will assume part of the rules is not to add names onto the document. 
Banks issue 'Blank' checks because that's the only way they can get a new customer spending their money right away. They issue those checks directly and not via the mail.  Almost no one will take a blank check for the same reason, how do we know it's good?  haha.
Napkin check eh? That's something I've heard of (basically winning on a game show and trying to cash that 'Giant' check they hand you). But I've never seen a case where I or my other fellow tellers ever had to pay that out. My gosh, I couldn't get that to fit into the scanning machine, and I bet Check21 doesn't apply..haha

rated:
one of my banks , on request anytime, gives me blank counter checks that they manually fill in the acct number and then let me fill in the upper left corner

rated:
forbin4040 said:   Yes, that is fraud
I didn't give your response red, but I can see why someone did, given that the act of printing a name on a check is not fraud, especially when the OP didn't actually intend to have his wife sign any checks.  It only becomes fraud if the instrument is signed by the wife with no valid authorization to act as a signatory on the account.

 

rated:
rufflesinc said:   one of my banks , on request anytime, gives me blank counter checks that they manually fill in the acct number and then let me fill in the upper left corner
  Mine issued blank in corner but printedon account/routing number.  And logged the check # in the system.  I rarely use printed checks though.  They have also called me in the past to verify checks were valid because there was a gap between check numbers when i used checks from different books.  

rated:
dcwilbur said:   
forbin4040 said:   Yes, that is fraud
I didn't give your response red, but I can see why someone did, given that the act of printing a name on a check is not fraud, especially when the OP didn't actually intend to have his wife sign any checks.  It only becomes fraud if the instrument is signed by the wife with no valid authorization to act as a signatory on the account.

 

  I guess no one reads that Forgery is Fraud
And it isn't forgery until the husband pays one of his wife's debts with the check implying that they have a joint account and the wife is paying off her debts directly. (Wow that can get ugly in a divorce)

See how there are loopholes for everything.  But still asking to put an unauthorized name on a check is implying fraud (OP secondary statements were not made until much later)

rated:
forbin4040 said:   
  I guess no one reads that Forgery is Fraud
And it isn't forgery until the husband pays one of his wife's debts with the check implying that they have a joint account and the wife is paying off her debts directly. (Wow that can get ugly in a divorce)
And that is neither forgery nor fraud. If it's his account and has his signature, he can pay whatever he wants.
  

rated:
rufflesinc said:   
JW10 said:   Yes, it is a BIG thing the first time the bank does it's duty and rejects such a check when the proof department compares the signature.
  how often does this actually happen without a complaint ?

When an employee at the bank realizes they might be on the hook for a large amount of money in the event that it's actual fraud.  I once wrote a $24K check and scribbled the last 3-4 letters in my last name of my signature.  The first name and part of the last name matched, but I got a fraud alert anyway.  Bank let the check process, but when I called a day or two later to tell them not to worry about it, they said they'd "help me recover the funds" if the check had been unauthorized and it didn't bear my real signature.  I reassured the guy that everything was fine and I promised to be more careful signing checks for large amounts in the future.

Now I want to put my pets' names in the top left corner of my checks.

rated:
Since this question seems silly to me, I will provide equally silly answer.

Just do a legal middle name change or addition to your wife's first name. Then you can print checks as

wakeuprich wifename Smith

or add 2 word middle name "and wifename" if above doesn't look good enough to you. Then can print:

wakeuprich and wifename Smith


This satisfies all of your requirements. Account is still only yours alone. Only you can write/deposit checks. Your wife name "appears" on all checks that you write to others. There is no issue of unauthorized name (implied fraud) printed on your checks.

rated:
crazycow said:   Since this question seems silly to me, I will provide equally silly answer.

Just do a legal middle name change or addition to your wife's first name. Then you can print checks as

wakeuprich wifename Smith

or add 2 word middle name "and wifename" if above doesn't look good enough to you. Then can print:

wakeuprich and wifename Smith


This satisfies all of your requirements. Account is still only yours alone. Only you can write/deposit checks. Your wife name "appears" on all checks that you write to others. There is no issue of unauthorized name (implied fraud) printed on your checks.

  Great now OP will be known as the guy who took his Wife's name after the fact..haha.
The guys at work will say 'Hi Harriet' or something like that

rated:
SummerSoFar said:   My guess is OP wants to appease (new?) wife by showing her he is man enough to have a joint checking account w/o actually providing her a joint checking account.You don't wakeuprich if you keep adding every wife to the checking account!

rated:
Obligatory: What's a "check" anyway?

Chris.

rated:
cpaynter said:   Obligatory: What's a "check" anyway?

Chris.

  Obligatory, I guess you live in your mom's basement and don't have to pay bills
Most of my bills are electronic but there are a couple that need checks.

rated:
forbin4040 said:   
cpaynter said:   Obligatory: What's a "check" anyway?

Chris.

  Obligatory, I guess you live in your mom's basement and don't have to pay bills
Most of my bills are electronic but there are a couple that need checks.

  Curious what bills you have that "need" checks?  
I only use some to transfer funds to family members (could get around the checks if i really wanted to)

Skipping 10 Messages...
rated:
scripta said:   If you must write a check made out to anything other than CASH or VOID, then you can just use ONLINE BILL PAY.

Having to set up ACH by providing a voided check needs to die a fiery death. Worst case you could just create a fake check on a computer and print it out. The font for the numbers is freely available, the rest can just be drawn to look like a real check. Since it's not being deposited, it doesn't need to be printed on any special paper (and I'm pretty sure even real checks don't need to be printed on special paper). I remember INGDirect required this many years ago, not anymore.

  
I never went as far as printing a complete check.  But I do remember having places require a voided check *with proper name and current address* when I all I had was the free blank starter checks from the bank.  So I'd tape a couple of the starter checks to a piece of letter-sized paper and run 'em through the laser printer and print my name and address on them.  But seriously, it's probably been ten years since I absolutely *had* to have a check to set up ACH.  Since then, even if they requested it, I've been able to convince them that I knew the difference between a routing number and an account number and had it right.

Honestly, though, I do use a check or so a month.  The lady who comes to our house to cut our hair, the neighborhood guy who takes care of our lawn, contractors doing work on our house, girl scouts selling cookies, etc.  I finally stopped writing checks to church last year and I'm all electronic now (both regular and special offerings).  Water bill is ACH.  Property tax is online via CC.  Everything else is either automatic pay via CC, automatic withdrawal from checking via ACH, or manual billpay from Discover checking (10˘ cashback per billpay).

Chris.

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