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I wrote a check to someone but it was stolen. The thief forged the indorsement on the check and then cashed it. My bank/credit union deducted the money from my account. What can I do?

Contact your bank or credit union right away. State law generally provides that you are not responsible for a check if someone forged the signature of the person to whom you made out the check.

Tell your bank or credit union what happened and ask for the money to be restored to your account. If the check was processed as an electronic transfer, you have additional protections under federal law.

These protections generally do not apply if you signed a blank check. You usually can’t get your money back if someone fills in his or her own name and cashes the check. If you lose a check you have signed without filling in the name of the recipient, you should stop payment on the check to try to prevent it from being cashed.