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Lev, Tax Advisor
Category: Tax
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Experience:  Taxes, Immigration, Labor Relations
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On large lottery winnings, how do you verify that the check

Customer Question

on large lottery winnings, how do you verify that the check is not a forgery and what other means do I need to be aware of
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Lev replied 1 year ago.

If you receive a check - the best way is to contact the payer's bank and verify.
If that payer's bank doesn't have local offices in your area - you may contact that bank and verify. They might ask you to send the check using certified mail. If the check is legit and may be paid - ask the bank to issue a cashier check in your name (that is not the same when the cashier check is issued by the payer).

If that option is not available - you may ask YOUR bank to verify the validity of that payment instrument.
You need to be aware about multiple ongoing scams regarding lottery winnings.
If the payer will ask you to pay anything upfront BEFORE the winning amount is deposited into your bank account - that is most likely a scam
Even after the check is deposited - if they asking to pay anything back - for ANY reason - that is at least suspicious - and keep in mind that your bank might come back to you later and confirm the false check. So do not use funds unless the bank will confirm your check is legit - and that might take up to 6-8 weeks.

Generally if you accept the check - you actually accept an obligation to pay - that is not an actual payment - so you woudl only accept a check from a trusted party.

Expert:  Lev replied 1 year ago.

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