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Technical FAQs—Mobile check investment

6 minute read

Mobile check investment is a free service that allows you to invest into your eligible accounts using the camera in your mobile device and a check that's made payable to Vanguard or at least one of the Vanguard account owners. It is available only to web-registered clients who download the Vanguard app on their mobile devices. 

You can access mobile check deposit from the Transact icon on your iPhone or Android device. Select Deposit and then tap on Select a funding source. Select the camera icon that says Mobile check to begin your mobile check deposit. You'll be prompted to take a picture of the front and back of your signed check using the camera in your device. We'll use the image to process your transaction.

Many brokerage accounts are eligible for mobile check deposit, including managed accounts. Eligible accounts include: individual, joint, partnerships, corporations, Traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, SEP IRAs, Rollover IRAs, trusts under will, UGMA/UTMAs, and foundations.

Mutual fund-only accounts are no longer eligible.

Yes, certain new account types may be eligible for mobile check deposit.

You can invest with the same types of checks that you'd normally send to us in the mail. As usual, your checks must be made payable to Vanguard or to one or more account owners.


Types of checks we accept:

  • Personal checks
  • Cashier's or bank checks
  • Certified checks
  • Federal Reserve checks
  • U.S. Treasury checks
  • Business checks
  • Vanguard issued checks


Types of checks we don't accept:

  • Checks made payable to cash
  • Altered checks
  • Checks in a foreign currency or drawn on a foreign bank
  • Post-dated checks
  • Stale-dated checks (generally, checks dated more than 180 days prior to receipt)
  • Unsigned checks over $50,000 (with the exception of rollover checks made out to Vanguard)
  • Money orders
  • Fourth-party checks
  • Traveler's checks
  • Non-rollover checks over $500,000

Checks written to one or more Vanguard account owners must be endorsed with the payee's signature, if they are over $50,000. Checks made payable to Vanguard do not need be endorsed on the back.

Yes. Investing by mobile check is limited to $500,000 per trade date, per client, for non-retirement transactions. For IRA rollover checks, the maximum check amount will vary.

We recommend that you save the checks for 14 business days or until you've confirmed that they have been successfully credited to your account. Once the purchase by mobile check is successfully posted, the check can't be used again and may be filed with any paperwork you choose to keep—or destroyed.

If the purchase request is received by Vanguard on a business day before the close of regular trading on the NYSE (generally 4 p.m., Eastern time), the trade date for the purchase will be the next business day. If the purchase request is received on a business day after the close of regular trading on the NYSE, or on a non-business day, the trade date for the purchase will be the second business day following the day Vanguard receives the purchase request. Because money market instruments must be purchased with federal funds and it takes a money market mutual fund one business day to convert check proceeds into federal funds, the trade date for the purchase will be one business day later than for other funds.

Mobile check investments follow the same collectability rule as all other transactions which is 7 days.

We'll let you know how to fix any issues we detect when you're taking a picture of your check. In the event that your check is submitted but isn't accepted for whatever reason, we'll let you know. As always, you may contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

No. The images are never stored on your device.