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Is a Torn Check Valid?

Recently I paid an insurance premium by check. The insurance company informed me that my bank had refused to honor my check. I asked that they return the check to me, and I took it to the manager of the local branch. "I see what happened," he said. "The check was torn slightly when the insurance company opened your envelope. Our automatic equipment couldn't read the code numbers in the bottom left hand corner, so the check was rejected."

Did the bank have a legal right to refuse to honor my check? If so, why? If not, why not?

Solution Preview

It all depends on where the check was torn. If the tear damages the routing number or account number and it is unreadable, yes, they legally may reject the check for payment. The best bet is to bring the check into the branch to have it viewed by the bank itself; however, in this case it was a check sent for ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses whether or not a torn check will be accepted by a banking institution.