Some insurer in the US has to send me some money. They wrote me the following:

If you would like an EFT deposit we would need a copy of a voided check.

Why would an insurance ask for a voided check instead of account+routing numbers to send an electronic funds transfer (EFT)?

  • 5
    A lot of people don't know what those numbers correspond to. It's probably much easier to just ask for the check. In my experience, they're happy to accept the two numbers without issues if you provide those instead.
    – ceejayoz
    Apr 5 at 12:54
  • 3
    You can ask them if a preprinted deposit slip will do; that carries the same account number information...
    – keshlam
    Apr 5 at 13:38
  • 3
    Pre internet that used to be standard procedure for providing account information. It looks your insurer is still doing the "good old fashioned way"
    – Hilmar
    Apr 6 at 2:13

1 Answer 1


Some companies think that some people don't know what the numbers mean on the bottom edge of the check. Therefore asking for the check means that the company can get get the numbers from the check/image. The percentage of people who can't get this information from the bank website, is decreasing over time.

Having a check to send does imply some level of assurance that the checking account is real, and connected to the name. This is becoming easier to spoof over time, so it might not provide any guarantee.

If you have a check it means it is a checking account. The company knows it isn't a savings account. In some systems this does seem important.

Asking for a check was a typical thing employers did when bring onboard a new employee. They did this to setup direct deposit. Now asking for it for payroll is rare, but one family member did need a voided check for a position started about 5 years ago.

  • 3
    I don't think it is about spoofing but accuracy - people make mistakes copying numbers all the time and unlike with credit cards there is no other information like name and an address to verify against. More likely to get the correct numbers from a voided check than from the numbers typed in manually by somebody who might not have double checked what they typed in was correct.
    – Brian
    Apr 5 at 15:16
  • 1
    Also they can scan the numbers directly from the check.
    – jcaron
    Apr 6 at 23:08

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