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What is this Cheque From?

in Banks, Humor

Twice now my wife has deposited a large cheque and the teller has asked her either:

  • What is this cheque from?
  • What is this cheque for?

One of My Favorite Parts of Mad Magazine

Courtesy of Mad Magazine (click for site)

Now I have already talked about Snappy Answer to Stupid Financial Questions, however, this question begs a commentary from me as well.

I understand why the question is being asked, however, it really smells of a “Lawyer Question”. You know the “Lawyer Question”, it’s a question that  the lawyers make you ask so you have the “I told them not to do that” or “Yes, I asked them if this was illegal”.

Just to be helpful here are some answers that you should not give if you are asked this question at the bank:

It’s the proceeds of selling my Crystal Meth business, I already endorsed it as Walter White

While I think this is funny, my guess is you will not make any friends except with law enforcement.

 What’s it to you? Cash the damn cheque and shut up, I am the customer.

That’s one of those, it feels good for 5 seconds and it hurts for weeks after that, never talk to anyone in the service industry like this if you ever want to have service.

The guy who wrote it told me to come in and cash it right away.

No bank would cash anything after you make that statement (without a 2 week hold on it). If your buddy told you that, you might want to keep that to yourself.

I got it from a Nigerian Prince who is trying to get money out of his country

OK, that one I went a little too far.



  • Bet Crooks August 25, 2013, 3:48 PM

    Hmmm! I often deposit a cheque from my husband payable to me to move money between our two big Cdn banks. Usually in the item line he writes things like “for a memorable evening.” Maybe that’s why they’re too shy to ask me any questions?!

  • Andrew August 24, 2013, 9:26 AM

    I can’t believe they have to ask you that! I would consider that quite a breach of privacy. I tend to deposit all my checks by app or atm. But even last time I went to my American bank with a Canadian money order made out to my wife with both the first and last names wrong, they didn’t ask a thing and deposited it for me.

  • Slackerjo August 19, 2013, 10:49 AM

    Like what “Life Insurance” said, people sometimes have to do/say stupid things so they don’t get their asses fired. Sadly people, AKA the big wigs, who do not work in the trenches feel the need, no compulsion, to make up stupid policies that they themselves never have to follow. Mocking someone for following a procedure they did not create does not make for an interesting blog post. It kind makes you seem, well, mean.

    • bigcajunman August 19, 2013, 11:04 AM

      I don’t think I was making fun of the teller, I was mocking the question itself.

  • August 19, 2013, 7:20 AM

    The rules around financial transactions today are Orwellian. I suspect that’s what your wife ran up against.

    We (and others in the financial sector) are required by law to report transactions to the government that seems ‘suspicious’. And it’s against the law for us to make you aware that we are reporting your behaviour to the government. The same is true for attempted transactions. If you do someothing funny at a bank and don’t complete the transaction, it’slikely going to be reported to the gov’t.

    Penalties for non-compliace are severe – and they’re serious about it. I’m creating a course on these regulations for insurance brokers and have been advised that the gov’t expects there to be a section in the training on penalties. Not much carrot here, and quite a bit of stick.

    Actually, I hope I didn’t break any laws by even telling you that I have to report you :).

    • bigcajunman August 19, 2013, 10:26 AM

      No I am sure everything is fine, just remain where you are for a while longer, they may drop by to say, “HI!”.


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