MMA pension checks

A Norwegian friend of mine living in Norway is receiving MMA pension checks from the time he worked on Alaska tug boats many many years ago. The monthly checks are sent to him in Norway but Norwegian banks no longer accept checks therefore he cannot cash the checks in Norway. I did send a mail to the MMA asking if they could do a bank transfer to his bank account in Norway but they said they don’t or won’t do that.
Any one else receiving MMA pension checks specifically Norway and how they manage to cash these checks in their home country.
Norway is pretty much a cashless society and checks haven’t been used for 20 years or so and the one remaining bank that did accept checks has withdrawn that service,
Any info gratefully accepted


Is this person an American citizen?

Not an American citizen, a Norwegian national living in Norway.

It might still be possible to open an American bank account to deposit the check into then transfer the money but I’m not sure. I’m surprised they won’t do direct deposit, though maybe they won’t do direct deposit into a foreign account.

I guess it might be possible to open a US bank account but it would have to be done online which is not to easy to do… I don’t how much his monthly pension is but maybe the cost of an online transfer is too much for MMA to consider but I think it would be peanuts. Its just a shame that a guy in his 80’s cannot get the benefits of his pension because the system of payments by check are outdated here in Norway.

I have some experience with situations like this and found there is no standard answer. Had to do “workarounds “ to transfer money internationally and seen many more. A few suggestions that may help with no guarantee they will.

Open a U.S. Bank account is going to require Social Security # . Since he’s receiving the checks now probably has one from working in the US it’s also likely money currently paid is reported to the IRS = US tax authorities. . Both those obstacles satisfied US bank account deposit best way, cash can be drawn against the account in Norway from ATM machines with the banks debit card. I operated this way working outside the US in many places including Norway.

Not unusual to open accounts for foreign nationals in the US transferring initial documents for signature by mail. You would need a trusted US contact person or a U.S. Bank willing to work with you . A work around I have seen used before.

Other method often used by sailors drawing cash against wages from ships master is hand it to a trusted US contact who sends it home outside normal channels generally cash . Very common wIth Philippine sailors. Again needs a trusted US Contact. Same method could apply to his checks delivered by mail to a U.S. contact your who cashes with a limited scope power of Attorney then transfers outside normal channels.

Last and a guess with no experience. Find a bank outside Norway that’s convenient, perhaps Sweden or other accessible location that will accept US checks.


Google “ Remittances “ very large global movement of funds across borders 3rd world contract workers, your friend does not fit that description situation the same .



Thankyou for your host of information, its becoming obvious there is no easy solution other than MMA making direct bank credits rather than issue checks.I have a bank account in the UK and they will accept checks but only in my name, the days of signing the back of the check seem to be outlawed in the name of security,money laundering or what ever.