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Sending Cashier's Checks to the Philippines


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If a person wanted to move some money over that was above $10,000 could it be done with cashiers checks?

 

 

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SkyMan

A cashier's check would probably be subject to the same 1 month wait as a personal check so it wouldn't buy you anything.  Also, if you were to bring a check for over $10K with you on a plane you'd have to declare it with Bangko Sentral or face problems at customs.  (Which is pretty ridiculous considering you could bring blank checks and fill them out for whatever amount later.)  If you really want to move over $10K in one shot I would recommend a wire to a bank account here. But unless I was in a big hurry I'd just move smaller amounts over time.

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shadow
6 minutes ago, SkyMan said:

A cashier's check would probably be subject to the same 1 month wait as a personal check so it wouldn't buy you anything.  Also, if you were to bring a check for over $10K with you on a plane you'd have to declare it with Bangko Sentral or face problems at customs.  (Which is pretty ridiculous considering you could bring blank checks and fill them out for whatever amount later.)  If you really want to move over $10K in one shot I would recommend a wire to a bank account here. But unless I was in a big hurry I'd just move smaller amounts over time.

I think one would also have to have a US dollar account to deposit the check into. 

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If the purpose is to have the check cashed, a dollar account is the most likely way a bank will assist as Shadow says.  Be aware, any account(s) which has a balance greater than $10,000 will need to be reported under FBAR and FACTA (reference the link). https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/taxpayers-with-foreign-assets-may-have-fbar-and-fatca-filing-requirements-in-june

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If you have a American express card ,you might be able to do 10,000 dollar to peso exchange at rain tree mall money changer as they are  the main one in the PH to handle   that card the owner son told me about a month ago. As i was telling him they should do cards ,dollars to peso  and do it cheaper than HSBC bank they could make a lot more money .Also never have to carry a lot of extra money in the money changing room if they just put it into the person PH peso account or just give them pesos for the dollars,they get from the cards.To me a easy way to grab a lot of money from the banks as even HSBC charge almost 8 busk for 40,000 at this time  and other banks charge a lot more . He said a good idea but have not been back to see him since then will check this week for sure as the highest dollar rate to the peso coming at Xmas time like all years i have been here.

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As others have written, in order to deposit a U.S. bank check, you would have to have a Philippine bank dollar account and have to wait the 21 business days for it to clear, same as it takes for a personal check to clear, thus no gain.

If you have a Fidelity ATM card and use it at HSBC then you should be able to take out $1,000 U.S. a day in pesos with no charge, or you can get a Charles Schwab ATM card and they reimburse the fees, Fidelity also supposedly reimburses the fees but since I use HSBC there were no fees and they have the higher withdrawal rate, most others only have p20,000 which would mean running the card more times but either would be better than carrying too much cash. 

So as others have said, you would have to wire the money and that too would take having a bank account to wire it to and even then, the banks usually hold the wired money a day, two or more before the might release it to you, check with the bank before wiring the money as each has their own rules,  BPI even holds U.S. dollar cash deposits one week unless you arrange with a manager before depositing it, that you will need it sooner. 

You can bring in as much cash as you want if you declare it.

Quote

It’s important to note that it’s not against the law to carry more than $10,000; you just have to declare it on arrival at the Bureau of Customs Desk at the airport, using the Foreign Currency and Other FX-Denominated Bearer Monetary Instruments Declaration Form. The form includes questions about your identity and travel plans, as well as who owns the money, who will receive the money, the source of the money and the reasons for carrying that much cash into the country. If you have more than $10,000 and you don’t declare it, you could be in trouble. Penalties range from fines to having your cash seized and/or ending up in jail.

http://www.investopedia.com/articles/personal-finance/111015/bringing-over-10k-philippines-not-so-fast.asp

 

You cannot cash a bank check,

The easy way to get a lot of cash is to have a lot of U.S. accounts with an ATM on each.

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Headshot
4 hours ago, Travis said:

If a person wanted to move some money over that was above $10,000 could it be done with cashiers checks?

Unless you want to put your name on the IRS radar, I would suggest that you not have more than $10,000 US in the Philippines at any given time. Having to deal with FATCA is a headache. IRS audits are even more of a headache (I got audited the first year I was here likely because I had filed with FATCA). Also, flying with a cashier's check is considered the same as flying with cash by the US government. Unlike a personal check (which hasn't been filled out), it is considered a monetary instrument. So, you have to declare any monetary instruments over $10,000 when flying. Now, you are on the DEA's radar as well.

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I have put in FinCen reports some years and filed FBAR in past years and filled in the Facta forms at Philippines banks and it did not trigger an audit for us, what will trigger an audit is wiring or declaring over $10,000 upon entry and not filing a FinCen report that year since it is for if at anytime during a calendar year, a person had over U.S. $10,000 in cash in ALL accounts which are outside the U.S. so one year when I had to close 2 accounts in one bank and then the bank insisted on depositing that money into my atm account and then giving me a managers check for me to deposit it into another Philippine bank, I had to report the money not once but a few times since each bank might have reported each account as if it was different money and then that would have added up to a bunch if I really had that much and even that did not trigger an audit, but give it time, sadly there is always the future. :( 

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SkyMan
1 hour ago, shadow said:

I think one would also have to have a US dollar account to deposit the check into. 

Yes, and that would be required for depositing a cashier's check, personal check, or a wire transfer.

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52 minutes ago, Lee said:

give it time, sadly there is always the future. :( 

True.

It may have been pure coincidence, but I had never been audited in my life until I filed a FATCA report (because I had moved money into my Philippine accounts to buy property here).

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I daresay the CRA and IRS are similar when it comes to audits. If you consider the large number of tax returns filed and the  relatively small number of auditors, there is no way everyone is going to be audited - nor would everyone need to be audited. If it was me organizing the victims subjects for audit:

  1. Based on historical data, flag everyone whose tax return suggested particular situations
  2. Based on historical data, flag some percentage of those whose tax returns suggest a different set of situations
  3. If there is any remaining auditor capacity, select an appropriate number of those who have not yet been flagged using some random selection method

In Canada, the CRA allows a student to transfer a deduction for tuition costs to a parent or grandparent. My return had this for my daughter when she went through 7 years of post secondary education - no audits. The first year my son went to University - flagged for audit - both of us. Since I did the tax returns for all three of us, I can only assume it was the poor information on my son's rental landlord which set up the trigger. My daughter was at home for all of her post secondary education - so no rental costs were ever claimed.

Back to the topic - anti-money laundering rules globally are getting tighter and tighter and most of us come from countries where the authorities - governments and banks - tend to play by the rules - at least as far as we peons are concerned. It is up to us to understand the rules and procedures. Add into the mix wanting/needing to transfer funds into a country where the rules can be interpreted by some weird, alien logic, and it becomes even more interesting.

I have brought in cash (always less than US$10000! I should be so lucky!). I have used wire transfers and remittances from both Canada and the UK and I have used my own VISA debit card and a pre-paid, reloadable VISA debit card (actually issued in the Philippines). I don't have a Philippines bank account (yet) so I have never tried depositing a cheque.

My preference at this point, if I wanted to move a large amount of funds, would be wire transfer. It's more expensive than all the other methods but should only take a few days (perhaps up to 5 business days). I would test the codes and account numbers first with a smaller amount if the target account is a new one. The main advantage is that if the sending bank is your own bank, they know where the money has come from and don't ask that question. Remittance companies and the debit cards have too many restrictions on the amounts and the fees will add up over multiple transactions.

It isn't essential to have a US dollar account as the target account. My UK bank does not offer Pesos as a transfer currency. I could probably transfer Sterling but I choose to convert the amount to USD for the transfer. The target account is a Peso account. It seems to work just fine.

A reminder - I am not transferring funds to myself (except when I use my own debit card). When I do have my own account, in the not too distant future, that could introduce a whole new set of factors!

I feel for our US brethren and their very restrictive global asset reporting and tax rules. When I had occasion to fill in a US Tax Return it was a nightmare of intrusion - even compared to HMIT and CRA.

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