Idiom: Bounce a Check

Bounce a check

To write a check in which you do not have enough money in your bank account. If you have $100 in your checking account and write a check for $101, the check “will bounce”.

What it means:
The word “Bounce” is used here to mean that the bank sends the check back to you. As if you wrote a check, it bounced off the bank and returned to you because you had no money for the check.

“Mary: Lucy, your check bounced for the Girlscout cookies you bought!

Lucy: Oh god, i’m so sorry. My paycheck didn’t get deposited to my checking account in time, the check should clear this time…let me write you another check. So sorry!”

Writing a check