If you don't have a bank account, cashing checks and money orders can be difficult. Depending on the company that issued your money order, you may be able to cash it at a local branch of the issuing organization or through a check cashing service. Because of concerns about fraud, be sure to have one or more pieces of identification with you when you try to cash your money order.
Things You'll Need
- Government-issued identification
Look at the money order to determine the organization, bank or business that issued it. You may be able to cash the money order at the issuer's local branch or office. For example, if you have a United States Postal Money Order, you can bring it to a post office for cashing. The money order may have a customer service phone number on it. If it does, call the issuer and ask for the location of a branch in your area or another location where you can cash the money order.
Locate check cashing services in your area and call them to see if they will cash your money order. While you can often avoid fees by cashing a money order at a branch office of its issuer, a check cashing service may be your only option for cashing the money order if there are no branch offices in your area. Some grocery and department stores will cash checks and money orders at their customer service desks.
Take at least one form of government-issued photo identification with you to cash your money order. Most issuers of money orders and check cashing services will need to see your identification before cashing your money order. In some cases, you may be asked to show more than one form of identification.
Tips & Warnings
- If you cannot find a check cashing store that will accept your money order, consider asking a trusted friend or relative who has a bank account to cash the money order for you.
- Money orders have fallen out of favor as a safe way to transfer funds because they are easy to forge. Even if you know your money order is legitimate, you may find it difficult to find a bank or check cashing service that is willing to cash it for you. Be prepared for a delay between the time you receive a money order and when you can actually get your money.
- United States Postal Service; Domestic Mail Manual
- Fayette County Sheriff's Office; Money Order Scams
- U.S. Postal Inspector Service; Postal Money Order Security
- New York Times: A Common Currency for Online Fraud -- Forgers of U.S. Postal Money Orders Grow in Numbers and Skill; Tom Zeller Jr.; April 26, 2005
How to Cash a Postal Service Money Order
A business or individual can accept United States Postal Service money orders as payment and be certain of receiving the money. Money...
How to Cash a Western Union Money Order
Western Union money orders offer a secure alternative to paying by check. The purchaser goes to a Western Union agent and pays...
How to Cash a Postal Money Order
Many people use postal money orders to shop, pay bills and send money to family and friends. If you receive a postal...
How to Receive Cash Without a Bank Account
Receiving cash without a bank account may seem challenging for individuals or businesses. Options do exist for sending and receiving cash, including...