Having a check deposit held can be a frustrating experience when you desire to have the funds available quickly for your financial needs. Understanding the reasons why we may hold a check deposit, how you get notified, and what it means to your cash flow can help you avoid fees and feel more confident.

Most of the time, when you deposit a check, a portion of the funds is made available to your account on the same day, with the remainder becoming available on the next business day.1 Sometimes there are circumstances that cause a check deposit to be placed on a temporary hold of up to seven business days. We place the hold to protect you from fraud, overdrafts, or fees that may occur if we were to make funds available immediately and the check is returned to you. Explore the “Availability of Funds Policy” section in the Deposit Account Agreement for more information on check deposits.

How can you tell if a check deposit has been placed on a hold?

Deposit holds usually get placed at the time of deposit. We will notify you when the deposit amount will be available in your account in a variety of ways. If your check was deposited at a branch or ATM, or with the Wells Fargo Mobile® app, your check receipt will include the date when the check amount will be available in your account. Additionally, you can receive emails of your check deposit receipt and updates of your account activity when you sign up for Wells Fargo Business Online® and set up alerts.2 If we place a deposit hold after the check was deposited, we will mail a letter to you with information related to the hold.

What are some common reasons for deposit holds?

When your check deposit is placed on a hold, you may be wondering why, or if, it’s necessary. Here are a few common reasons for deposit holds.

  • The need to verify sufficient funds. Sometimes, when a check is deposited, we may need to verify with the check writer’s bank to ensure that the account has enough funds to cover the check amount before making all the funds available to you. This step can take up to seven business days and helps you avoid having to repay the check amount if there were insufficient funds in the check writer’s account.
  • A redeposit of a previously returned check. This may occur when a check that was previously returned due to insufficient funds is redeposited. To help avoid the possibility of the check being returned again and possibly incurring additional fees, we may place the deposit on hold as we attempt to verify if the check writer’s account has sufficient funds. While this may take just a few days, the hold could last for up to seven business days.
  • Deposits from new customers. When you open a new business checking account, we will focus on getting to understand your deposit routine and transaction activity. This helps us to protect you from overdrafts, returned checks, and associated fees during the first 30 days, which may cause a check deposit to be placed on a hold.
  • Large-dollar deposits. We understand that from time to time you may receive checks greater than $5,525. To protect you from having to repay a large check amount if you were to use the funds and the check is returned unpaid, we may place a temporary hold to validate if the check writer’s account has sufficient funds. A portion of the check deposit may be made available within two business days, while the rest of the funds will be available no later than the seventh business day after the day of your deposit.
  • Frequent overdrafts. A history of overdrafts may indicate that your account may not have sufficient funds for a variety of reasons. If you have experienced several overdrafts in the last six months, we may place a temporary hold of up to seven business days on your check deposit until the check has cleared.

Business Tools and services to help you manage your account and monitor deposit holds

Experiencing a deposit hold? We’re here to help you through the process.

Wells Fargo Business Online allows you to check your account balances from a desktop or mobile device to know when your held funds will become available. You can also transfer3 funds from other Wells Fargo accounts, if needed, to fund your checking account.

Help stay on top of your cash flow by setting up alerts.2 Choose the alerts you’d like to receive by email, text message, or push notification. Alerts can help you avoid potential late fees and overdrafts with reminders to help you track your account transactions, including when your deposit has been made to your account.

Set up Overdraft Protection to avoid overdraft on your checking account while the check deposit is being processed.

Alternatives to check deposits

Interested in a few ways to avoid deposit holds?

Bank-to-bank transfers let you transfer4 money between business accounts at other U.S. financial institutions and your Wells Fargo account instead of using paper checks. Funds for this option will typically be available in your Wells Fargo account within one to two business days and are not subject to holds.

Wire transfer is another fast method to receive funds electronically from personal and business accounts in the U.S. and 200+ countries. Typically, funds from a wire transfer are available and ready on the same day or next business day and are not subject to holds. Additional fees may apply.

Zelle® “request money” in the Wells Fargo Mobile® app, which sends your customers a notification to let them know you are requesting the amount to be sent with Zelle®, helps your customers make quick, convenient, and safe payments to you that arrive typically in minutes.5 This can help to keep your cash flow current.

Customers can also receive payments via ACH. This is a good option if you’re working with larger corporate accounts that are not subject to holds. Automated Clearing House (ACH) is a national funds transfer system that offers next-day funds availability and is deposited directly into your checking account.


1 The next business day may not be the next calendar date. For example, a deposit made on a weekend may be available on Tuesday morning even though no deposit hold was placed.
2 Sign-up may be required. Availability may be affected by your mobile carrier’s coverage area. Your mobile carrier’s message and data rates may apply.
3 Terms and conditions apply. Mobile carrier’s message and data rates may apply. See Wells Fargo’s Online Access Agreement for more information.
4 Terms and conditions apply. Setup is required for transfers to other U.S. financial institutions, and verification may take 1 – 3 business days. Customers should refer to their other U.S. financial institutions for information about any potential transfer fees charged by those institutions. Mobile carrier’s message and data rates may apply. See Wells Fargo’s Online Access Agreement for more information.
5 Enrollment with Zelle® through Wells Fargo Online® or Wells Fargo Business Online® is required. Terms and conditions apply. U.S. checking or savings account required to use Zelle®. Transactions between enrolled users typically occur in minutes. For your protection, Zelle® should only be used for sending money to friends, family, or others you trust. Neither Wells Fargo nor Zelle® offers a protection program for authorized payments made with Zelle®. The Request feature within Zelle® is only available through Wells Fargo using a smartphone. Payment requests to persons not already enrolled with Zelle® must be sent to an email address. To send or receive money with a small business, both parties must be enrolled with Zelle® directly through their financial institution’s online or mobile banking experience. For more information, view the Zelle® Transfer Service Addendum to the Wells Fargo Online Access Agreement. Your mobile carrier’s message and data rates may apply.