I have a prize check in my name at my old university based in the US. I have now shifted to another country and was wondering, what would be the best way to cash out the check?

  1. I know someone around there, who might be able to collect it for me. Would I still be able to cash it out in the other country? Or can he/she cash it out for me?

  2. Since the amount is won in the US, how would I pay the taxes? (Since it is earned over there.)

  • What was the prize for? Are you sure it isn't scam?
    – JohnFx
    Commented Feb 7, 2016 at 23:47

4 Answers 4


I know someone around there, who might be able to collect it for me.Would I still be able to cash it out in the other country? Or can he/she cash it out for me?

Unlikely. Unless they deposit it into a US bank account in your name. You can cash US checks in almost any decent bank anywhere in the world, but it may cost you some and will probably take 2-3 weeks.

Since the amount is won in the US, how would I pay the taxes? , since its earned over there.

You would file a tax return with the IRS and send them a payment. You can buy drafts in US dollars almost anywhere in the world.

  • 1
    I do have a US bank account. Can my friend simply deposit the check to my bank account?
    – Sherby
    Commented May 21, 2014 at 8:41
  • I believe so, it has to be endorsed though...
    – littleadv
    Commented May 21, 2014 at 8:47

This question was asked three years ago, but now that it's 2017 there is actually a relatively easy, cheap and fast solution to at least the first half of your question.

To cash the check:

  • have someone take photos or scan the front and back of the check
  • they email those photos to you
  • you print them out
  • sign the back
  • use your mobile banking app on your phone (from your US Bank, assuming you have one...) to deposit the check

I've done this a half dozen times while abroad (from the US) without any problems.

  • That was my plan until I found out my check does not have a back. The back of my check is completely blank. Do you know how to solve this issue? Thank you!!
    – Doris
    Commented Jan 11, 2020 at 14:13
  • @Doris print a blank page? Commented Aug 24, 2023 at 17:54

Your friend probably cannot deposit the check to your U.S. bank account. U.S. banks that I've worked with will not accept a deposit from someone who is not an owner of the account. I don't know why not. If some stranger wants to make unauthorized deposits to my account, why should I object? But that's the common rule.

You could endorse the check, your friend could then deposit it to his own account or cash it, and then transfer the money to you in a variety of ways.

But I think it would be easier to just deposit the check in your account wherever it is you live. Most banks have no problem with depositing a foreign check. There may be a fairly long delay before you can get access to the money while the check clears through the system.

I don't know exactly what you mean by a "prize check", but assuming that this is taxable income, yes, I assume the U.S. government would want their hard-earned share of your money. These days you can pay U.S. taxes on-line if you have a credit card. If you have not already paid U.S. taxes for the year, you should make an "estimated payment". i.e. you can't wait until April 15 of the next year, you have to pay most or all of the taxes you will owe in the calendar year you earned it.

  • I have my renters depositing their rent to my account on a monthly basis, what are you talking about?
    – littleadv
    Commented May 21, 2014 at 15:32
  • And my employer deposits my pay check directly to my bank account. But if I walk into the bank to make a deposit, they require me show identification to prove I am the account owner. I don't claim to understand the rules.
    – Jay
    Commented May 21, 2014 at 18:26
  • never had I been asked for identification to deposit a check.
    – littleadv
    Commented May 22, 2014 at 4:24
  • 1
    I guess different banks have different policies. So my first paragraph above should be a "maybe" rather than a "probably".
    – Jay
    Commented May 22, 2014 at 13:19

I've been a landlord and also a tenant. I have been able to deposit money in an account, where I have the account number, and/or a deposit slip. In a foreign bank you can deposit by a machine if in the bank or someone is there for you and knows the account number.

With regards to cashing a check in another country, it is up to the bank and the time is at least 14 to 21 business days, with a fee is added. As of a winning check, since its in your name, if you are in another country sign the check, for deposit only with a deposit slip and send it to your out of country bank by FedEx - you will have a tracking number, where as regular mail it might get there in 3 months.

I hope by now you came to your solution.

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