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Uncashed State Checks - Illinois Comptroller's Office

Q. What is the purpose of this inquiry process?

A. This page will allow taxpayers to identify uncashed state checks that are $5 or more, and that are between one and five years old. If an uncashed check is located, the check replacement process also can be started here. There currently exist more than 160,000 such uncashed checks totaling more than $35 million.


Q. What kind of checks are being held?

A. State income tax refunds, payroll checks, commercial payments and retirement payments.


Q. Who can request a replacement check?

A. Only the person legally entitled to the original check, or their heirs or a qualified third party may request a replacement check.


Q. What must I do to start the replacement process?

A. Submit your request by following the steps on this web site. Within three weeks the Office of the Comptroller will mail to you a form entitled "Replacement Warrant Request and Affidavit” for you to complete. Once the Comptroller's Office receives a properly completed affidavit, the replacement check will be sent within four weeks.


Q. If it turns out I am legally entitled to request a replacement, how long will it take to get the money?

A. Once you have completed the necessary paperwork, and returned it to the Comptroller's Office, the replacement check should be mailed within four weeks.


Q. What happens if the payee is deceased?

A. In the case of a check issued to a payee who dies before the check is paid by the State Treasurer and whose estate has been probated pursuant to law, the Comptroller, upon receipt of a certified copy of a judicial order establishing the person or entity entitled to payment, may issue a replacement check to such person or entity. Only legally authorized persons may request and receive replacement checks.


Q. What happens if I discover I have an uncashed check that is more than five years old?

A. State law prohibits the replacement of a check outstanding for more than five years beyond its issue date (15 ILCS 405/101.10(a)).


Q. Is there a way for me to avoid the problem of misplaced or lost checks in the future?

A. Yes. You may request direct deposit of your income tax refund on your State of Illinois income tax return. For other payments please contact the Comptroller's Office at 217-782-9969.


Q. What do I do if I think I am still due a state income tax refund for the current year and still haven't received it?

A. If you believe you are still owed a current year state tax refund, please contact the Illinois Department of Revenue at (800)732-8866, or inquire on the Department of Revenue web site


Q. What is a Vendor?

A. For purposes of the web site, a Vendor is an individual or other entity that receives payments from the State of Illinois.


Q. What is a Vendor TIN?

A. A Vendor TIN is a Taxpayer Identification Number generally issued by the Federal Government. Individuals are issued Social Security Numbers. Businesses are issued Federal Employer Identification Numbers. Individuals not eligible for Social Security Numbers are issued Individual Tax Identification Numbers. All of these are considered to be a Vendor TIN for purposes of this web site.

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