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Unauthorized Check w/o Visible Signature

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What is the bank's liability when a customer claims a check that cleared their account is unauthorized, but due to the check design, the bank's image of the check does not show the customer's signature? (i.e. the design on the check just scanned black, covering up the signature). I know we could request the actual item from the depositing bank, but there is no set time that banks have to keep the actual check, and most probably destroy them within 30-60 days. If the customer doesn't report the unauthorized item before the actual check is destroyed, we would have no way to know whose signature was on the check. How would the customer sign an affidavit of forged signature if they can't even see the signature on the check?

The customer affidavit typically says that the customer did not sign and did not authorize anyone else to sign. It need not say that the signature used isn't recognized.

First published on 5/27/13

First published on 05/27/2013

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