Check Hold

DEFINITION of 'Check Hold'

Denotes a period of time equal to the maximum number of days that a bank can legally hold the money from a check that was deposited. After this time it must credit the funds to the account of the party making the deposit. The check holding period is normally the same number of days as it takes for the check to go through the bank's clearing cycle.


The Expedited Funds Availability Act of 1987 mandates that local checks can be held for no more than two business days. Nonlocal checks can be held for up to five business days after September 1, 1990. Furthermore, the first $100 of any check must be made available for the customer's use the following business day.