How it works

Clearance times

If the cheque is worth NZ$15,000 or less, the funds will usually be available for you to use:

  • after 20 business days for a cheque or bank draft from Australia
  • after 30 business days for a cheque or bank draft from anywhere else.

If the cheque or draft amount is more than NZ$15,000, it might take longer for your funds to be available — we have to send the cheque back to the bank that issued it before it can be cleared.

Sometimes we’ll also do this for lower-value cheques if we think there’s a chance they might be dishonoured.

Note: Sometimes, funds from foreign cheques and bank drafts can be made available for you to use before the cheque has cleared.

Dishonoured cheques

A cheque can be dishonoured if:

  • the sender stops it
  • there’s not enough money in the sender’s account
  • it’s stolen
  • it’s sent fraudulently.

When you deposit a cheque or bank draft in your account, the money is added to your account but isn’t available for use until the cheque clears. Foreign cheques can dishonour after the funds have been made available for you to use — you should be wary of accepting foreign cheques from new people or companies.

If the cheque dishonours:

  • we’ll debit your account for the amount of the cheque, using the foreign exchange rate on the day we make the transaction
  • other banks involved in processing the foreign currency cheque or draft will charge dishonour fees. These fees may vary from bank to bank. We’ll pass these fees on to you.

What it costs

See our international accounts and services fees.


See our Terms & Conditions (PDF 84.6 KB) for Foreign currency draft/cheque.

Download Kiwibank's Terms & Conditions or pick up a copy from your local Kiwibank.