You may have noticed. If it takes four days for your check to reach a credit card company, your check clears the bank in four days. No float.

Soon, the no-float situation will be in effect nationwide. On Oct. 28, a new federal law kicked in that changes the way all checking accounts work. 'Check 21' is designed to speed check clearing and allows banks to process payments without physically moving checks. It cuts processing time from days to minutes.

Bankers say customers won't get cancelled checks, but 63 percent already get photocopies. They won't notice a difference except for the loss of float.

Professors at the Georgia State University College of Law think that there's a chance of the same checks being cashed more than once by mistake. Bankers say any errors can be quickly fixed.