Cashing or depositing US Treasury refund check

I have a small income tax refund check made out to my wife & I from the U.S. Treasury. She has a Peso account & my stepson has a Dollar account at BDO. My wife is a Filipina and I'm an American (married 10 years). We moved from the Las Vegas area several months ago to Pasig City. The check is made out to both her & me since we filed jointly. There are just to many hoops for me to open an account at BDO or Citibank (I have a Citibank account in Las Vegas) If I was able to jump through all the hoops, Citibank Philippines still won't let connect the two accounts. We can't deposit the check into my stepsons Dollar account because his name is not on the check. We can't deposit the check into my wifes Peso account because it's made out to dollars & my name is not on the account. Any Ideas?

We have a dollar and peso account at BPI.  I am joint owner on the dollar account and she is sole with me as beneficiary on the peso account.  I send USD to the dollar account all the time so maybe BPI will be more friendly.

W9XR :

I have a small income tax refund check made out to my wife & I from the U.S. Treasury. She has a Peso account & my stepson has a Dollar account at BDO. My wife is a Filipina and I'm an American (married 10 years). We moved from the Las Vegas area several months ago to Pasig City. The check is made out to both her & me since we filed jointly. There are just to many hoops for me to open an account at BDO or Citibank (I have a Citibank account in Las Vegas) If I was able to jump through all the hoops, Citibank Philippines still won't let connect the two accounts. We can't deposit the check into my stepsons Dollar account because his name is not on the check. We can't deposit the check into my wifes Peso account because it's made out to dollars & my name is not on the account. Any Ideas?

Howdy and welcome

There are as far as I know only two ways to handle the check cashing. One would be to have the check reissued in your name only or If you know someone here with a large enough business and that knows you. Have that person cash the check for you.

The banks here all operate independently from each other. This includes the same bank such as BDO etc. You can do banking at YOUR branch but other branches of the same bank can not help you except when using an ATM for withdrawal.

When you actually move and are here, contact Social Security at The Embassy and if wanted, open a Social Security direct deposit with an approved bank. But even then, the only usage of that account of for your SS direct deposit. No other use of that account is allowed. Be sure to deal with the SS office at the embassy after you are here and not the offices in the states as they don't have all the needed information back home. The workers here deal with international issues of the SS on a daily basis are are very good at what they do. The embassy will assign you a worker and they are fast, friendly, and efficient.

I've been here for three months now.  My SS check is direct deposited in my stateside Citibank account. On purchases I use a Citibank Credited card that charges me 3% for use in the Philippines. The card pays me 1% on each purchase & 1% when I pay the statement. I pay the statement in full each month so there is no interest charge, the 3% is offset with the 2% rebate. For pocket cash I withdraw money as needed (from a Citibank ATM) to refresh our BDO dollar & peso account.

I get my credit card statements online, but also use a re-mailer service located in Houston Texas. Anytime if the IRS,  banks or anybody else needs to contact me by mail it is forwarded to me. I can check my mail online, a .jpg of the outside of the envelope is available, then I make a choice to dump or keep it. When I have enough mail I have the bundled FedEx to me at a discount,  the re-mailer gets a discount from FedEx because of their high volume. If I chose they will open up the mail and scan it and then email me the scans at a charge.

So what has happen, the IRS went over my 2015 tax return & found an error in my math and sent me a check instead of direct depositing it.

I've talked to Citibank and then I decided to download their mobile  banking app, then I found out the app does not work when downloaded in the Philippines, it should have been set up and downloaded when I was in the states.

So my next step will be  to call my local Citibank branch (Henderson, NV) to see if I can FedEx the check to them and make a deposit by mail. I had been using OOMA in the states (VOIP) similar to Magic Jack or Vonex. It works fine here so I have my stateside phone number that works for incoming & out going calls. After you buy the unit, you only pay the tax's about $2.50 month.

So that's how it stands for now, thanks for responding.

Hi Steve,

Please is my response to Navajo as it is quite lengthy. Thanks for responding.

W9XR :

I've been here for three months now.  My SS check is direct deposited in my stateside Citibank account. On purchases I use a Citibank Credited card that charges me 3% for use in the Philippines. The card pays me 1% on each purchase & 1% when I pay the statement. I pay the statement in full each month so there is no interest charge, the 3% is offset with the 2% rebate. For pocket cash I withdraw money as needed (from a Citibank ATM) to refresh our BDO dollar & peso account.

I get my credit card statements online, but also use a re-mailer service located in Houston Texas. Anytime if the IRS,  banks or anybody else needs to contact me by mail it is forwarded to me. I can check my mail online, a .jpg of the outside of the envelope is available, then I make a choice to dump or keep it. When I have enough mail I have the bundled FedEx to me at a discount,  the re-mailer gets a discount from FedEx because of their high volume. If I chose they will open up the mail and scan it and then email me the scans at a charge.

So what has happen, the IRS went over my 2015 tax return & found an error in my math and sent me a check instead of direct depositing it.

I've talked to Citibank and then I decided to download their mobile  banking app, then I found out the app does not work when downloaded in the Philippines, it should have been set up and downloaded when I was in the states.

So my next step will be  to call my local Citibank branch (Henderson, NV) to see if I can FedEx the check to them and make a deposit by mail. I had been using OOMA in the states (VOIP) similar to Magic Jack or Vonex. It works fine here so I have my stateside phone number that works for incoming & out going calls. After you buy the unit, you only pay the tax's about $2.50 month.

So that's how it stands for now, thanks for responding.

Hi Again W9XR,

No problem with a long post so far as I know. It sounds like you have a pretty good system for getting most things done here. It's just crazy how big a difference there is in most things, including banking between here and back home. It is as if everything exists here but nothing works or is connected. Like a giant puzzle with all the pieces but you must put it together blindfolded. Totally frustrating and is the reason that some people throw in the towel and go home.

The one thing that I would suggest is to avoid using Philpost postal service here if at all possible. Carelessness, corruption, and downright incompetence prevail there and any other government offices. That being said, the best AND safest way to get important documents back to the states from here is to just bit the bullet and pay the price for UPS or Fedex 2nd day delivery. That, I think would be the way to send that endorsed check to your bank in NV that will insure it arrives. If you bank in NV will do that, send a photocopy of your ID page of your passport and copy of another form of ID just incase.

Henderson? I can remember when Las Vegas and Henderson was separated by a good distance of open desert. I use to live up in Cedar City, Utah and made that trip through there often.
We have a friend that is living in Henderson now and is retiring from UPS as a driver the first of the year. They will be moving to Concepcion Tarlac which is fairly close to us. Small world isn't it?


Regards
Navajo

Hi Navajo,

I hate to say anything to negative about the Philippines, but it's hard to believe
they were leveled 20 years before Vietnam and how far the Vietnam economy
has advanced.

I find it takes a half a day to get anything done, sometimes you can't get it done,
which could be done in 15 minutes in the states. There is so much red tape,
after you jump through a hoop, there is another one waiting for you. Sort of
the light at the end of the tunnel, which you never reach.

I think they will never catch up, first for foreign investment, the rules make
it impossible since 60% must be Filipino owned. The rich are rich, the
middle educated  move overseas, the poor are only good at making kids,
guaranteeing the future reproducing itself. Being a deeply religious nation
compare to the states, they don't get married because it's too hard to get
divorced, and yet they don't practice birth control.

I've been married to my Filipina wife for 10 years. We met and married in
Las Vegas. She has owned a house in Pasig City which we have upgraded
from the states over the years without traveling to the Philippines, we added
a third floor for us. She had been gone for 10 years separated from her kids
who live in the house. The eldest has left for England, he is a nurse and accepted
a job. It's very hard for me to get adjusted and if I didn't love my wife plus
being financial responsible  for my  two stepsons, one with a girlfriend & baby,
all who live with us, I would go back to the states. My stepsons are a great help
since my wife is 63 in poor health. I'm not an expat  with a young wife.  We made
the leap of faith liquidating everything in the states, giving up my medical care too. 
If I went back to the states it would be with two suitcases.

I would like for us to sell the house, ( three floors, 65 meters per floor) which she is
very reluctant to do and move far away from Manila. Someplace with better weather
and sane drivers so I can buy a car.

Before I retired I came in contact with many Filipinos through my work and they
thought I was nuts about moving to the Philippines, they were right. While friends
of my wife say I would love it.

I can understand your desire to not live in Pasig City, but I have not seen sane driving anywhere on Luzon.  I consider it a successful day if anything gets done.  Life is the same way in Latin America.  It was kind of you to move to the Philippines with your wife, for me it beats the hell out of Vegas.  Hard to believe Southeast Asia is hotter and more humid than the Philippines, I know people who moved to Ecuador to escape Thailand.  Hoping for the best for you and your family.

Hi Mugtech,

I loved Las Vegas......In July it can get up to 46C, but it can be more comfortable than Manila as long as you're not standing in the sun. Las Vegas enjoys 330 days of sunshine andaverage humidity is 20%. In Las Vegas you don't sweat. The best part annual rainfall 4"per year or only 21 days with measurable rainfall.

It's cheaper to eat out than at home. My mailbox each month would be filled with dining coupons from the Casinos, there are over 100 casinos. We have eaten more Prime Rib in a month than the average American eats in a year, we have eaten more Prime Rib in a week than the average Filipino eats in a life time. All the coupons are buy one get one at the Casino Buffets. For example my wife and I would have dinner at the Firelight Buffet at Sam's Town casino for $11 for both of us. Sometimes we would go to the Palms Casino for Sunday Buffet brunch that has Crab Legs. All over town you can have Steak & Lobster Tails for $12.95.

Shopping was wonderful with low prices at Walmart and even lower at Sam's Club (membership like S&R). Before I left the states for Manila I bought a Samsung 65" curved screen TV for $960 but had to return it because Forex could not handle it. For example in my email this week I received a mailer from Frys.com, LG 65" $679. Anyone reading this check out Frys.com. Also I purchased many things from Amazon.com with two day "FREE" shipping. Amazon has a warehouse in Las Vegas so many times I would get it shipped free the next day.

People only think of the image of Las Vegas that is misleading. Behind all the glamour is a city of over one million people, the image of Las Vegas is created that brings close to a million visitors a year. The slogan "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas" sounds great because what really happens in Vegas is expectation brought to Vegas by visitors. They go nuts trying to do things in Vegas what they would never try at home, except it cost an arm & leg here what would cost peanuts back at home.

How did I end up in Las Vegas? Well I was born and raised in Buffalo NY a snowy, damp & wet place. At 18 I went to college in Chicago and stayed there for 18 years getting married and raising a family, sometimes in Chicago winters  could get to -26C.  While living in Chicago my 1st wife & I vacationed in Las Vegas (1969) in the middle of the Chicago winter. The town was a nowhere place in the middle of the desert with 110,000 people. Closest City's were Los Angeles, CA or Phoenix, AZ both about 322 kilometers  away. From that moment in the back of my mind that I would like to live there.

The company I worked for promoted me to management if I would relocate to Pittsburgh, PA and I stayed there for 26 years. Pittsburgh was snowy & cold, for my whole life I was in these horrible winter weather places always thinking about the mild winters in Vegas.

During those 26 years I was divorced and raised two kids to adulthood. For those 26 years I had a rented a house with three bedrooms, 1 1/2 bathrooms, garage,  living room & very large kitchen. On a large lot with front & back yards for $500 a month.

One day I was watching a movie "Seabiscuit" and one of the characters said "Follow your dream" and at that point I said he is right, I'm going to follow my dreams while I'm in good health. Shortly thereafter I told my boss I was quitting, he asked if I found another job?  I said no. I told him I was moving to Las Vegas, he asked why? to gamble? I said no, for the weather. He asked do you have a job in Vegas? I said no, He asked do I have a place to stay in Vegas? I said no. He asked do I know anyone in Vegas? I said no. Then he looked at me and smiled and said "I wish I was you".

Over the internet I rented a storage unit in Vegas and shipped 4 boxes similar to Forex. I loaded my car with as much as I could, everything else I either gave away or threw away. Driving for four days I arrived in Las Vegas, entering the town I rolled down my car windows and played Elvis Presley's song Viva Las Vegas as loud as I could. I stayed at Casinos for a week before I found an apartment to rent. Now Las Vegas was a quiet desert town that became the fastest growing city for over 10 years straight. So the whole town is new, nothing rotting or rusting away.

Now Las Vegas is full of Filipino's, over 110,000 of them, so many that they even have Jollibee's. One casino has Leechon at it's buffet on Tuesday night. I met and married my Filipino wife in Las Vegas over 10 years ago.

Might I mention red tape?  Just walk into the marriage license bureau, show ID (passport) todays cost is $77 and walk out with your license. There are more than 50 wedding chapels and you can actually get married for $49. Within two hours you can get your license and get married. My wife had several friends visit us and get married.

No traffic, never ever spend time stuck in traffic.

https://online.citi.com/US/JRS/pands/de … eckDeposit

If the app notices that you are out of the US simply install a VPN on your phone. I like Turbo VPN myself. Choose a US proxy from the side menu and run the VPN before opening the Citibank app and it should allow you to upload checks.

My experience is that you will have to open a new, dollar account, deposit the check and wait.  BDO is a good bank and all you should need is your passport and your wife's ID.  Whatever you do, do not us BPI.  They held our treasury check for over 90 days.

Hi Glen . . .That may be a good possibly, my stepsons account is a dollar account and my wifes is a peso account. So maybe we can close my stepsons dollar account and open a peso account. Then close my wifes peso account and open a dollar account. I'm surprised BDO didn't mention this and sent us on our merry way. The only thing I have misgivings about is the check is made out to both of us. Thanks for the suggestion.

If you have a USA bank account deposit it through the app and then you can withdraw it. If you don't have a US account I would strongly suggest moving a majority of your funds to one. I would not keep a majority of my retirement dollars in the phils.

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