To protect consumers, the Manitoba government has set limits on the amount that can be charged for cashing a government cheque. That fee is $3, plus two per cent of the face value of the cheque. As an example, on a $500 cheque, the maximum that can be charged is $3, plus two percent of $500, which equals $10, for a total of $13.
Government cheques include those issued by:
- Government of Canada (ex: employment insurance, income tax refunds)
- Province of Manitoba (ex: income assistance)
- Manitoba Housing and Renewal Corporation
- Manitoba Housing Authority
- Manitoba Public Insurance Corporation
- The Workers Compensation Board
Please note that, under Canadian law, you have the right to cash a Government of Canada cheque for free, including at any bank, even if you are not a customer. Acceptable identification is required.
If you've been charged more than the maximum fee allowed, contact the Consumer Protection Office. Businesses that overcharge will be required to refund the overcharged fee, and the business may incur a substantial penalty, ranging from $1,000 to $5,000.