Accepting Foreign Checks: Overview




Our recommendation to University departments is that you do not accept foreign checks.


Due to a change in the structure of the foreign banking system and the increased fees associated with this change, U.S. banks are passing through larger fees on foreign checks, and are raising the minimum check value eligible for foreign clearing. As a result, bank fees have increasingly exceeded the face value of small checks, resulting in a net loss on these payments to the University.


Departments should encourage their customers to make their payments using a U.S. check, wire transfer or credit card (e.g., VISA, Master Card). This payment information should be clearly communicated in such things as registration material, tuition payment instructions, and journal subscription information.


For departments that still accept foreign checks, the University has a separate bank account used to expedite the acceptance and translation process. The costs of maintaining this account are offset by clearing fees, charged on a per check basis.