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You can place a stop payment on a money order in much the same way as you would stop payment on a personal check. Contact the financial institution that issued the money order and fill out any required paperwork. If you purchased the money order at a United States Post Office, you must fill out a form at your local post office to start the stop payment and replacement process. A fee is usually involved.
A stop payment on a money order may be needed for several reasons. The person you sent the money order to may have never received it, or it may have been lost or stolen. Since money orders function differently than personal checks, it may take a bit longer for the bank or post office to issue the stop payment. The United States Post Office, for instance, must first perform an inquiry into the status of your money order before canceling it and refunding your money.
If your money order was from the United States Post Office, you must visit a local office and fill out form 6401. You will also likely have to pay a small fee to have the stop payment placed. Once the process is complete, you will receive a new money order, and the number of the old one will be placed on the Post Office's Missing Money Order List, which post office employees should reference before cashing any money orders.
Rules for putting a stop payment on a money order vary between financial institutions. The fees for a stop payment are usually higher at a private bank or credit union than at the post office. Some institutions will not issue a stop payment but will instead issue a refund or replacement for uncashed money orders.
There is usually a toll-free number printed on the money order receipt that you can call to inquire about a stop payment. At some banks or credit unions, you can begin the process over the phone, but will then have to go to the institution in person in order to complete the paperwork and pay your fee. Some companies that specialize in money orders have claim forms for stop payments or refunds available to download on their websites. After completing the form, you must mail it into the company with the stop payment fee enclosed.