Lee never received a check from a Google AdSense account, then tried for weeks to track it down. Finally, Google offered scans of the check, and it turned out someone else with the same name had gotten the check by mistake and cashed it through a local bank, which couldn’t determine whether or not the check was a fake and decided to “try depositing it and see what happens.”
Google finally got back to me with the scans of the check.
I looked in the endorsement area and it had been stamped with the words: “Credited into the account of the within named payee in *bank name*”. I wasn’t sure what that meant. Had someone had the bank slacked off and stamped it without IDing the person? It wasn’t clear.
It’s a local bank so I was excited about that, because I figured my chances of resolving it were better with a local bank than with a larger one. I was correct. From went I went into the bank in the morning and when I came back later to pick up the money was only 2 hours. Everyone at the bank was very helpful.
Turns out the check wasn’t stolen. The address the check was sent to doesn’t exist, but if it did exist it would be in my neighborhood. I have a somewhat common name, not John Smith common, but common enough that I have from time to time run into others with my name and most Google results of my name have nothing to do with me.
The mailman must have realized the address was invalid and recognized the name as one in my neighborhood and delivered it to that person. Unfortunately there appear to be two of us within a block of each other and the check went to her rather than me.
She brought it to the bank confused about it and wondering if it was a scam. They deposited it in her account and said to wait and see what happened.
I went to the bank and they were able to sort it all out. I suppose this is a hazard of having a common name.
That is a rather crazy coincidence. We suppose it’ll be a rather rude awaking for the “other you” when the bank takes the money out of her account.
So yeah, Google is a bit slow on the uptake in tracking down misfired checks, and you can’t quite trust the mail either. It’s only right that people will find this article by Googling “What happened to my AdSense Check?” and discover that the answer is “just about anything.”