Does my bank need to be aware of my child first?

Do I need to, or should I, add anything to the back of the check where I would normally endorse it?

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If it is not a large amount, it may not be worth it to you to open a new bank account for your child at this time.

In that case, your bank should let you deposit it into your own account (you can keep track of the fact that your child owns it yourself) or cash it.

In times that I have done this in the past, I have endorsed the check like this:

My Name, father of Child Name

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  • Other phrases include "child's name minor by my name" and "child's name – minor (and on a new line) my name". – Kenny Evitt Dec 26 '16 at 15:45

Have the child open an account. Deposit the check to that account. Good introduction to the concept of saving, and needs to be done eventually.

If they are too young for this, opening a custodial account in their name might do the job. Ask the bank; I'm sure they deal with this often.

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  • And why would anyone bother with a custodial account to cash what is probably a small <$100 prize for a minor. – DepressedDaniel Dec 20 '16 at 3:01
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    Because it establishes the account. Which you then teach the kid how to use. Which introduced the concept of having money but not spending it immediately, which introduced the concept of saving up for something (especially if you encourage this via some form of matching funds), which puts them on the path toward managing their money rather than being managed by it. But that's a discussion for Parenting.se. – keshlam Dec 20 '16 at 3:56
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    Also it might be a small amount, but it is probably the first of many. All sorts of people have given me all sorts of minor (some under $20) amount for my children since their births, and now they each have an account with a few hundred bucks in it. – Coxy Dec 20 '16 at 7:03
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    My parents did this when I was a kid, and it helped enormously in teaching me the value of saving and tracking my personal finances. I think there are few better lessons you can teach your children in the realm of personal finances than trying to set in a habit of saving at a young age. – Vality Dec 21 '16 at 22:50

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