I am traveling in Europe and I have my US clients send my paychecks to my parents' address in the states. Is there anyway I can get these paychecks deposited?

The best idea I have is for my Mom to take a picture of the front and back and email them to me and then I try and endorse it and use my bank's smartphone app.

My clients have not endorsed them as "for deposit only". Can my Mom endorse it as "for deposit only" and then go to the teller?

  • 6
    As a practical matter, I highly recommend you call your bank back home and ask them what they will need to be able to have your mom give them the checks for deposit to your account. Not all banks have the same policy on things like that, especially if you don't have a business bank account (where dropping checks for deposit can even require no signature as a matter of course). That said, I'm not aware of any bank that actually checks signatures on checks to be deposited - they only care if there is one, as they will only investigate if something goes wrong (like bad checks, overdraft, etc).
    – BrianH
    Commented Oct 26, 2018 at 20:26
  • I may misunderstand this question. Depositing a cheque is trivial - you can even do it at the ATM right?? Wouldn't your family member simply do that? Sorry if I don't understand.
    – Fattie
    Commented Oct 27, 2018 at 3:34
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    @fattie the person the check is made out to has to endorse it by signing the back of the check.
    – Andy
    Commented Nov 25, 2018 at 21:31
  • 1
    I had utterly no clue that was the case :O
    – Fattie
    Commented Nov 26, 2018 at 3:16
  • @Fattie Likewise... in the UK anyone can go through the mechanics of paying a cheque into the payee's account, assuming they have their account details. The person doing so would typically sign a paying-in slip, but nobody has to touch the cheque in anyway.
    – TripeHound
    Commented Nov 26, 2018 at 13:57

4 Answers 4


Yes, your mother can endorse it "for deposit only". The person writing the check does not write such a restricted endorsement; the recipient does. Your client should never put such an endorsement on a check they write.

That said, if you're mother is not an authorized signer on the account, the bank may not accept her signature on an endorsement. If it's a business account, businesses often get rubber stamps made that say "for deposit only" and have the name and/or account number of the business.

I take it you can't have the funds direct deposited? That would surely be easier.


Banks often accept cheque deposits by mail. So few people do it that it's not well known, but usually allowed.

Once you've checked your bank will do it, get your parents to give you a list of waiting cheques. Then write a letter addressed to your bank branch saying "Please deposit the following cheques to my account number 12345678" and list the payers and amounts of the cheques. Sign the letter and mail it to your parents. Then your parents put it in an envelope with the cheques and mail it to your branch.

  • Large banks have a central address to mail in deposits, not your branch. Instead of a letter the best way to mail deposit would be to include a preprinted deposit ticket, those things at the end of the checkbook. (You can also order a book of them through the check reordering process) Those have your account pre-encoded in MICR, to avoid any keying errors. The slips are also imaged with the checks, so there will be a record you can access via online banking.
    – user71659
    Commented Nov 28, 2018 at 18:25
  • The problem is I don't think a letter changes the necessity of endorsing a check. US law (UCC) specifies the signature must be on the check or on paper affixed to the check (which typically means document carrier envelopes). A bank likely isn't going to process a letter stapled to each check through the system.
    – user71659
    Commented Nov 28, 2018 at 18:33

Note that this is for deposits of reasonable amounts. If you try to deposit more than $10,000, they do look at it harder.

As long as the depositor is not asking for cash back, they generally don't look at who is doing the deposit as long as the name on the check matches the name on the account.

Officially, the depositor needs to be on the account but I've only had one branch reject a deposit to my account by my girlfriend (who has a different last name) of my paycheck into my account.

As has been mentioned, "for deposit only" was in the endorsement section and none of the cashiers know what my signature looks like anyway. They just check to see that it is there. There are too many customers to know everyone's signature.

Funny story:

When I was a kid, my Dad almost got arrested for depositing his own paycheck because my Mom always deposited his checks and they didn't recognize his signature. I can't see that happening any more.


Anyone can deposit a check made out to the account holder's name at the account holder's bank. No ID is required. I used to do this regularly for friends and even my landlord who often traveled abroad; I would write them a check and go to their bank and deposit it for them. Sometimes the teller asked me to write "For Deposit Only" on the back, but most of the time, they just stamped it and took it. By the way, this works for employees depositing business checks too- it doesn't matter who makes the deposit as long as the checks have the business name on it.

As a side note, when I filled out the deposit slip I always asked the teller to confirm the account number matched the name on the account, just in case my friend or landlord texted it incorrectly or I was at the wrong bank! I also always asked for a receipt, and was happy to see that the receipt never showed the account balance on it because I had never verified that it was my account. (Banks are not supposed to reveal the balance to anyone other than the account owner or authorized users.)

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