How do I withdraw a large sum from my bank and give it to a money management firm?

I recently sold my house and paid off some debts, cards and student loans etc, and I want to leave the rest with my financial people.

I also I feel like there's some resistance to and monitoring of my spending lately and I don't like it, why do I need to explain to my bank my plans and why I am making withdrawals and wire transfers. I don't have a lot of financial savvy but I have to say I feel like no one really has he right to step in and ask me what I'm spending my own money on and why, or why I want wire money to another account in my name at another bank. IRS and tax issues aside (clearly I'm going to comply with any IRS income regulations), why do banks feel like they can pry like that?

Any advice would be appreciated as you can see my know-how of banking operations is limited but it feels a tad like my privacy is being invaded here. Thanks!

  • 8
    Why don't you want to transfer it electronically ? no one really has he right to step in and ask me what I'm spending my own money on and why Yes they might need to to check if you are doing something illegal e.g. money laundering etc. Banks are always suspicious when big amounts materialize for an account which had only seen small transactions previously. And what is the problem sharing with the bank about the deposit you received was from selling your house. explain to my bank my plans and why I am making withdrawals They are looking out for you.
    – DumbCoder
    Commented Jun 15, 2017 at 8:46
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    People who are not too financially savvy are often the ones who fall for scams including ones run by crooks posing as money management firms, or Nigerian princes, or putative friends/fiances of the apposite sex who live abroad, or American GIs who need help while stationed abroad etc. It is worrisome that you write that you are giving your money to s money management firm and not investing it with them. Please be very sure that what you have written does not happen literally; that you give the money and it is gone forever. Commented Jun 15, 2017 at 9:09
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    In the US banks are require by law to report transfer of $10,000 or more.
    – cybernard
    Commented Jun 15, 2017 at 16:15
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    One other word of warning: in the US the police can and do exploit the civil forfeiture laws en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civil_forfeiture_in_the_United_States to confiscate money from anyone carrying significant amounts. If you take out over $10,000 in cash it is automatically reported to the police, and they can then send someone to search you and confiscate any money they find. In theory they need probable cause, but thats just a matter of getting a sniffer dog that detects money (yes, that is a thing). Once they find the money they can just take it: you have to sue them to get it back. Commented Jun 15, 2017 at 16:37
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    Surely the question should be posed to your banker and not to strangers on the internet. Commented Jun 15, 2017 at 17:22

4 Answers 4


I feel like no one really has he right to step in and ask me what I'm spending my own money on and why

Well, yes - the bank do, and they are legally required to. It's for legal purposes and for your own protection.

The bank are looking for money laundering, generally. You can't withdraw more than $10,000 cash without the bank having to report it; however, if you ask for $10,000, the bank tell you that they have to report it, and so you reduce your request to (say) $9,500, the bank will still report it - with a note on the report saying that you initially requested a higher limit.

They also check spending patterns. If for the last six months you've withdrawn $1,000 in cash each month, but for the last four days you've asked for $5,000 each time, then they'll ask what the money is being used for, in case you're being defrauded.

Your question implies that the 'financial people' are asking for the money in cash. If so, then that's a big (BIG!) red flag. No reputable company would ask for deposits that cannot be traced. In this case, I'd be looking for other 'financial advisors'. Interview several, not just the ones used by your friends and/or relatives. And if you don't understand an investment completely, then you shouldn't be making that investment. Your advisor would not be risking their OWN money on it, would they...

  • 6
    Just to add: if you reduce your request to (say) $9,500 for the purpose of evading currency reporting, that's called structuring, and it's a federal crime. You could lose your money and/or be prosecuted criminally. That said, cash is indeed a huge red flag, and large piles of cash are virtually never never necessary when investing with reputable financial advisors in the United States. Commented Jun 16, 2017 at 8:46
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    @ZachLipton: Is it structuring even if you never end up making another request to make the total go over $10k?
    – user541686
    Commented Jun 16, 2017 at 10:17

How do I withdraw a large sum from my bank and give it to a money management firm?

Either write a check to the Money Management firm or wire transfer the funds to the account mentioned.

  • ...or why I want wire money to another account in my name at another bank. I think they are giving the OP static based on wire transfers as well.
    – Myles
    Commented Jun 15, 2017 at 20:45

Yes, your privacy is invaded, that's the law in many jurisdictions. The goal is to make money laundering and financing Evil Things harder. That's why banks are required to request proof for every money transfer larger than a specific sum.

This is only a minor issue most of the time. You will have some kind of agreement with that Money Management company and this agreement (or a copy of it) will serve as a proof of your lawful reason to transfer money. It works just like that - you get to the bank and say you want to initiate a money transfer, the clerk asks you to show the "proof", you give them your agreement or a bill that requests you to pay or whatever else document you may have that proves that you're bound by some kind of contract with the recipient of money. The clerk then makes a copy of the "proof" and it stays in the bank to back the transfer until it is completed. The copy is then stored for some time and later destroyed - that's up to how the bank handles documents.

  • 1
    @gerrit Nope, the document backs the transfer.
    – sharptooth
    Commented Jun 15, 2017 at 13:26

The problems of the government "watching your money" only apply to paper cash money which has pictures of presidents on it, and it's for anti-laundering/anti-crime/drug reasons. Nobody cares who you write a $100,000 check to. The paper trail is there, but nobody ever looks at it.

If your money-management firm wants paper cash, they're crooks.

No reputable money management firm would even want cash. The apocryphal "briefcase of money" would be a nightmare for them. They'd need to count it in front of you, guard it, call in a security firm to transport it, and then make the same exact justifications to the government that you have to make, which means, chain of custody, they'd have to give you the same grilling your bank just gave you! They would strongly discourage cash for those reasons.

So the crook wants the paper bag o' cash because he plans to do none of those things; he plans to take it from you and doesn't want a paper trail.

Often when the financial industry uses the term "cash", it's a slang for checks, money orders, cashiers checks, savings bonds, and other things that instantly map to denominated US dollars or a foreign currency routinely traded like yen, pound, franc, or Euro. The opposite of "cash" would be stocks, bonds, real estate holdings, patents, heirlooms, debt, vehicles, etc. where they must be sold to make them into USD.

Just as a warning: most "financial management firms" rip you off; they pretend to be cheap or free, but actually earn their pay through deception: they talk you into fairly mediocre investments which pay them a huge sales commission. Sure, your money goes up, but not half as much as it should've, and they pocketed the difference. They also recommend products which are unnecessarily complex, as a snow job. Investment is simpler than that.

  • Some bold statements are made here: "most "financial management firms" rip you off". Why don't you explain (or refer to) how to pick the right one if one is not an expert in this field?
    – M. Mimpen
    Commented Jun 16, 2017 at 5:25
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    Among current US notes, Hamilton and Franklin were not President. And Currency Transaction Reporting includes currency of other countries some of which don't even have presidents (and yet survive somehow!) Commented Jun 16, 2017 at 8:21
  • @M.Mimpen I think the first step would be to make sure any financial management professional you are working with is a fiduciary. The new rule that went into effect last week only applies to 401Ks and IRAs so you need to ask outside of that (and there is discussion about rolling that rule back.)
    – JimmyJames
    Commented Jun 16, 2017 at 17:12

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