Uncashed Checks Policy
The Plan mails approximately 6,000 distribution checks each month. Participants are encouraged to cash their distribution check in a timely manner, however, a small number of checks go uncashed each month. The Plan adopted a policy that states when two distribution checks remain uncashed for more than four months, the mailing of additional distribution checks will be suspended, except for Required Minimum Distributions. The Plan will notify the participant if their distributions are going to be stopped because previous checks remain uncashed.
If you believe you may have an uncashed check(s), please contact the HELPLINE (1-800-422-8463) for verification and further information.
The following is a Q & A regarding the Plan's policy on uncashed checks:
Why would a check remain uncashed?
A check issued from your Plan account can go uncashed for a number of reasons including: it was sent to a wrong address, it was misplaced or forgotten, it was for a small amount or the participant is deceased or became incapacitated.
How long do I have to cash a distribution check?
Checks are valid for six months from the date they are issued.
What happens if I don't cash a check?
If you do not cash your check within four months of issuance, you will receive a letter encouraging you to cash the check or request re-issuance. After six months, you will receive a second notice that informs you to request a replacement check since the original check will no longer be valid. If these letters are returned as undeliverable, the Plan will attempt to use alternate means to contact you but may not be successful. If you receive either of these letters, you should contact the HELPLINE as soon as possible.
Will my distributions be suspended if I have uncashed checks?
Yes. If you have two or more outstanding checks issued more than four months ago, the issuance of further checks will be suspended until you contact the HELPLINE to resolve the issue.
What if I don't cash a Required Minimum Distribution (age 70½ +) check?
Since they are required by law, distributions made to satisfy required minimum distributions after age 70½ will not be suspended even if previous checks are uncashed. Remember that the amount distributed is still taxable to you even if you don't cash the check.
What can I do to reduce the chance of having an uncashed check?
The easiest solution is to cash any checks you receive promptly. We also encourage you to consider the Plan's ACH direct deposit feature for all payments that don't result in account closure. The ACH service is without charge and is a faster and more secure way to ensure your distributions are promptly credited to your bank account (see Direct Deposit Request Form (PDF)).
If you are receiving checks for a small amount, you can change your distribution amount or timing so that the checks are larger.
It is also very important that you inform the Plan if you change your address. Download and print the Change of Name/Address (PDF) form.
How can I find out more about uncashed checks?
Contact the HELPLINE with questions. If you are a beneficiary of a deceased participant or the guardian of an incapacitated participant, you may be required to provide additional legal documentation.
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