Commonly phrased as “refer to maker,” this instruction instructs the recipient of a check to contact the check’s original author for an explanation of why the check was not cashed. When a check is returned with an RTM stamp, the person who received it or deposited it is instructed to get in touch with the person who authored the check.
If the check’s maker or creator isn’t sure why the check was returned, he or she should get in touch with the bank that issued the check. Due to security concerns, the bank of the check’s author or creator cannot be contacted by the recipient. Also, if an RTM has been placed on a check, it cannot be redeposited.
The Federal Reserve found that the number of non-cash payments declined from $30.5 billion in 2006 to $24.5 billion in 2009 as people increasingly used alternative payment methods including credit cards and debit cards instead of writing checks. Many people still choose to pay using checks instead of credit cards because paper checks provide more detailed transaction history. Many people find it useful to maintain an in-depth accounting of all money paid to individuals, organisations, and enterprises of any size.