Theft of your checkbook jeopardizes not only the security of your checking account, but all the accounts you may have with that bank. In addition, it can also make you more vulnerable to identity theft. To answer your question What to do if my checkbook was stolen? We invite you to read the simple steps that we present below.
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- 1 What to do if my checkbook was stolen?
- 1.1 Step 1: Contact your bank as soon as you discover that your checkbook has been stolen
- 1.2 Step 2: Talk to the bank officer who normally assists you
- 1.3 Step 3: Ask your bank to contact their check verification system
- 1.4 Step 4: Report the theft to the police
- 1.5 Step 5: Request a copy of your consumption report from ChexSystems
- 1.6 Step 6: Protect yourself against identity theft by freezing your credit report
- 2 What To Do If My Checkbook Was Stolen: Additional Tips
What to do if my checkbook was stolen?
Step 1: Contact your bank as soon as you discover that your checkbook has been stolen
This will activate the security procedures of the financial institution. These typically include closing the affected account, opening a new one, and transferring funds from the old account to the new one.
Step 2: Talk to the bank officer who normally assists you
Ask about the best way to handle any checks you’ve recently written that haven’t yet been presented for payment.
If you leave funds in the old account to cover those checks, you may have to pay a fee to issue a stop payment order on the stolen checks.
may be more convenient contact the merchants you wrote those checks to and try to replace them. Please note that a stop payment order is only valid for six months, after which it must be renewed.
Step 3: Ask your bank to contact their check verification system
You will do this for the purpose of checks from your old account are not accepted by stores. Call the major check verification systems yourself to inform them that your checks have been stolen and that authorizations should not be issued for the affected checking account.
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Step 4: Report the theft to the police
In the event that any of the stolen checks are forged and successfully cashed, the bank or merchant will still try to make you pay. You will need that police report if you want to successfully dispute the charge. Also, if you notice any fraudulent activity involving your financial affairs, file additional reports with the police.
Step 5: Request a copy of your consumption report from ChexSystems
This is the reporting agency that keeps track of verification information. If you discover that your checking account number is being used fraudulently, you can correct the information by following the steps found on the consumer assistance page in the portal of ChexSystems.
Step 6: Protect yourself against identity theft by freezing your credit report
With this simple step it will be impossible to open new credit accounts in your name. When you want to open a new credit account, such as when applying for a mortgage or car loan, you can easily lift the credit freeze for a short period of time and then refreeze it.
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What To Do If My Checkbook Was Stolen: Additional Tips
Check your bank statement regularly after a theft. If you discover that checks that you did not write have been paid, contact your bank immediately.
Checking accounts do not offer the same level of consumer protection as credit or debit cards. Never carry checks with you and keep your checkbook in a safe place. If you must use them, restrict their use to trusted merchants.
Take advantage of online banking services for your bill payment needs.