A substitute check is legally the same as the original check if it accurately represents the information on the original check and includes the following statement: “This is a legal copy of your check. You can use it the same way you would use the original check.” The substitute check must also have been handled by a financial institution.

If you receive a substitute check that is not legally the same as the original check and you suffer a loss related to the substitute check, Check 21 provides you with a special procedure that you can use to get your money back.