How to write a check / Fill out a check Step by Step Guide (USA)

How to write a check / Fill out a check Step by Step Guide (USA)

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A smart intro to the check and its purpose

You probably don’t write a check every day, but now suddenly you have to do it? We will help you with step by step instruction on how to write a check properly. Before we explain to you how to write a check, it may be interesting to know the history of check creation. Why did we need to create this bureaucracy? Did it help us?

If you don’t want to go deep, just jump to the “how to fill out a check” section.

The check (or Cheque in non-US) is a document that orders a bank to pay a specific amount of money in whose name the check is issued. It is a document that guarantees a certain amount of money.

Moreover, the check allows a monetary transaction. Nowadays, its modern substitutes like debit cards, credit cards, and wire transfer are in the market. The person who writes the check is known as drawer has an account where his/her money is centred.

Moreover, the drawer has the authority of writing various details including monetary account, payee, and date of issuance on the check. Checks are being used from ancient times, but they got more popular during the 20th century.

History of Checks

ancient romans writings
They are being used from ancient times and it is believed that Romans had used some types of checks. Today we encounter the modern form of a check which can be interpreted by machines and they are written. Checks are of different looks, but the requirements are nearly the same. Let us discuss certain types of checks:

Cashier Checks

This check is issued by a bank with a sign of a cashier. The bank is responsible for the finds of this check. These types of checks are often required in large transactions as buying a car or a house.

Payroll Check

It is such a check that is issued to an employee to compensate for his or her work. These checks are active nowadays.

Bounced Check

When someone writes an amount larger than the account balance then it called a bounced check. It bounces because it cannot proceed. This can put the drawer a penalty.

From the above discussion, we have got a good introduction to checks and we are ready to fill them out. Writing a check also needs some special standards to follow which we are going to state in the below-given paragraph named “How to write a check”.

Let us discuss separately the parts of the check:

Parts of a check:

  • Drawer: The drawer is the signatory and the account holder with the authority to play with the overall amount.
  • Payee: A person who is paid by drawer.
  • Drawee: The bank or other financial institution where the check can be presented for payments.
  • Amount: The amount or the currency which is written in digits or figures.
  • The dollar box: It is the place where you write the amount in numeric.
  • The amount in words: The place where you write the amount in words.
  • The memo line: Here you write the purpose of writing a check.
  • Your account number: It is the place where the money comes.
  • Contact info: Your check carries the contact info of your bank.

Personal Information:

The upper left corner contains your pre-printed personal information.

It can be:

  • Your Name
  • Home address
  • Your phone Number

This personal info is the same when you have opened an account in the bank. Moreover, if you want to make privacy you can ask the bank to limit the information.

Checks are widely used nowadays for the transaction of money between two parties. Moreover, it also has an expiry time and date after which the money cannot be withdrawn and used.

Above all, a new person signing a check may feel confused to fill and understand the requirements if check filling and may come up with a question of how to fill out a check. For the same reason writing a check needs some understanding of instructions and terminologies. Let us have a look at how to fill out a check-in detail.

How to write a Check?

When a new person encounters check filling, he may have some questions like how to fill out a check where to write the payee name, and where to sign, for instance. Come with me to have important info about how to fill out a check.

Step 1: Put the date of the check

Write the date of check issuance at the right top corner of the check. The date is of special pattern which you must follow. This step is important because it will be the record of check issuance. Moreover, the date should be written with special care and it must be recorded in your record book.

Step 2: For whom you are writing the check

The place where pay to the order of is written is an area where you write the name of the person whom you are going to pay the money. You can write the name “cash” if you do not exactly know the person and company to whom you are giving the check.

Be careful, this part can be risky if the check is stolen or misplaced. This is because anyone can withdraw a check with no name. In case, you are withdrawing your own money then write “self” in this place. For example, Sona Jan.

Moreover, the spelling of the name should be investigated before writing because some banks have strict policies regarding the correctness of cast and name.

Step 3: Amount in numbers

This step is also important in writing your amount in numbers. There are two portions of writing an amount out of which one is the amount in numbers. Moreover, be careful in writing these numbers so that the cashier may cut it out accurately from your balance. 1400$, for instance. The amount in number is very important for some currencies. Beware while writing amount because there are many places for writing amount. Someone can an extra digit if you will not cut the remaining area with a horizontal line.

Step 4: Payment in words

One portion is to write payment in words where you must write your total digits in alphabetical form. For example, 24000$ must be written as twenty-four thousand dollars. For some currencies, the amount in words portion is very important and this importance increases if you use dollars, pounds, and riyals, etc.

Step 5: Memo writing

Memo writing can be optional for some banks and mandatory for some, but it is a good practice. Moreover, it clarifies the purpose for which the check was written. For instance, if you are writing a check for bills or for paying rent, you can mention it in the memo place.

Often, it can also happen that the company asks to write the account number in the memo place when paying bills. You can also mention the purpose of the check even if you are using it for your purpose.

Step 6: How to sign a check?

This is the last step for ordinary bank check, but the steps may increase for some special branches. Nonetheless, this area is a little tricky because you must sign just like you have signed while opening your account. This is because it proves the security or originality of a person. The signature is on the bottom extreme left corner.

Do balance your Checkbook

Every time you spend money or make a deposit you should keep track of the checkbook register. Consequently, this will help you in tracking all your deposits and withdrawals. Moreover, it is advised that you should record all the transactions and deposits.

Why I record me Every Transaction?

When you pay by check, do record your check no on the top right corner. Thus, it will help you keep the track of all checks and make sure whether any of your checks are missing or not?

Note the date of your check issuance. Moreover, also write the purpose of writing the check. Also, make a record of whether the money was deposited or withdrawn.

Subtract the amount of every transaction from the total amount to have a check of money.

Reconciliation of your Bank statement Each Month

Writing a check may also need the record of what is added or subtracted from your account. Furthermore, when you are provided with a monthly bank statement online or in a mail, try to check and balance your account.

Moreover, download the balancing sheet and enter the information accordingly. As a result, if your worksheet and adjusted balance match then your account is balanced. Moreover, in case of any difference, recheck your math and see if you have missed anything.

In case you have given all the info correctly, then must reach the bank for the solution to the error as soon as possible. Balancing your checkbook can be a boring task but it’s helpful in the satisfaction of your monetary interests.

For instance, in case you have written a check and the check is still not withdrawn then it will not be shown on your online history and you can have an idea of such activity if you have recorded.

How to write Cents on the check?

Firstly, write the number of dollars in the dollar box then place a decimal after it and write the number of cents.

For instance, if you have “20$” and “15” cents the total amount will be 20.15 $. Moreover, to write dollars in words, you may write the number of dollars and then write the cents placing “and” in-between. Someone may see that there is no category of cents on a check, but you must simply write the number of cents in the place of dollars.

Tips to keep your check security

There are certain measures that should be followed while writing a check. A few of them are listed below. One thing which I should remind, these points vary from bank to bank.

All of them may not be applied to the same check so pick out of your choice:

  • Keeping the checkbook in security.
  • Track your balance regularly to avoid any unknown transactions from your account.
  • Make it sure not to sign a check until you have filled it. Because of this, someone can use your signed check to withdraw an amount.
  • The signature should remain the same on each check.
  • Dump all the checks which are no longer in use.
  • Make a line after writing an amount so that nobody can add an amount.
  • Do not leave blank spaces after writing your name on the check. Draw a horizontal line that covers all the areas to avoid further addition.
  • Canceling “Bearer” and adding “A/C Payee” at the top will make it sure that no one can get money else than the desired person.
  • When writing the amount in words, do write only at the end of the sentence.
  • Sign on the place below the signature panel. Signing on the MICR band can make your check dishonored.
  • Do not forget the date in any case
  • Avoid staples and folding of the check.
  • Do not leave too much space between words, someone can add an extra zero can make seven to seventy.

What can I do if a make a mistake while writing a check?

In most cases, the bank will reject your check approval but there can be some ways that can be adopted to avoid this situation.

These are:

  • Crossing the error with a single horizontal line
  • Writing the correct info above the horizontal line

In case you have written a wrong payment, it is a good idea to Void your check this time.

Frequent asked Questions

How long a check takes to clear?

It is dependent upon country standards. in the case of dollars, an amount 1500$ or below it the holding period is of 4-5 days. Above this amount, it can take 7-8 days.

How to cash and deposit my check?

To deposit or withdraw, you must sign on the back of the check. It can also be done using bank apps.

Moreover, if you want to digitally deposit, then open the bank app and go to the deposit portion. Follow the instructions and give the required information.

How long is the validity of the check?

It is the standard made by banks of different countries that when the check will expire. You should search for your own bank’s check validity period

How to correctly write a check?

  • Write the date
  • Write the amount
  • Write the recipient
  • Write the amount in number
  • Sign the check
  • Fill out memo section(opt)

How I will write 2500 USD on the check?

Two thousand and five hundred dollars and 00/100 cents as a fraction.

How to deposit check online?

Firstly, download the bank app and enroll there. Endorse your check by signing at the back. Further, log into the account and select a cash deposit.

What are the Apps for cashing a check?

  • Ingo money app
  • ACE mobile loads
  • Brink’s prepaid mobile app
  • Load fast check to cash
  • PayPal

How to self check?

Self-check means the drawer is withdrawing the money for his use.

What are some types of checks?

  • Official checks
  • Certified check
  • Money order
  • Giant check
  • Electronic Check

How can I deposit a check which is not in my name?

You can also deposit a check not in your name if the drawer has issued it to you.

Differentiate between self-check and bearer Check?

A check where the payee’s name is written “self” is called a self-check. Mostly, this is used to withdraw the amount from the bank. A bearer check is transferable to any person without endorsing.

How 8 lacs can be written in checks?

There is no special rule that you must follow in writing such an amount. Not only lakh but you can use lac instead. Moreover, there is no special compulsion in this case.

How can someone withdraw self-check?

The amount can be drawn to the person who is holding the signed check. Moreover, these checks are used to withdraw the amount from your account. They are cashed from the bank branch where you have an account.

How can I use banker’s checks?

These checks are deposited in a normal manner but are issued differently. The bank is the body of issuing bankers’ drafts. The banker’s check is procedural work by the bank.

To the conclusion

From the above discussion, it is very clear that writing a check needs our special attention. Moreover, it is not the work of every person to write a check without knowing. For the same reason, there are tips regarding “how to write a check”.

We have seen that special care is required while writing a check to avoid any scamming and illegal practice. Some people feel it easy to sign the check before filling, but this should also be avoided. Furthermore, any mistake in writing can lead to the cancellation of the check.

It is very helpful to record every transaction in or out of your account to balance your account. Plus, the recording habit will not lead to any confusion in mind about any money loss or misplacing. In addition to this, the recording is a very good practice to track bank activity.

To make your account safer, you should follow special tips to validate your account security and avoid any risk. In the nutshell, writing a check is a work of special attention because you must follow certain rules and regulations.

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