When you deposit a check, your bank or other financial institution may delay crediting the money to your account during what's called the check hold period.
The number of days that your bank can legally hold your funds depends on the type of check you deposit and, at some banks, on the type of deposit slip you use.
Under federal law, certain deposits must be available by the next business day, including checks payable by the US Treasury or a Federal Reserve Bank, US Postal Service money orders, cashier's checks, and electronic payments.
Other deposits can be subject to a check hold of one to five business days, depending on whether the check is drawn on a local or non-local bank, and the size of the deposit. The law does require banks to make the first $100 of your deposit available on the next business day.
Your bank must inform you of its check hold policy, although you should keep in mind that banks can impose longer holds if your account has been open less than 30 days.