How to write a check (2023)

First there were debit cards, which you could use asCredit card🇧🇷 Then he camemoney transfer serviceslike PayPal and Venmo. This led to the near extinction of the paper check.

But it's still important to know how to write a check. Some companies, individuals and organizations still prefer them. For example, many landlords still require rental checks because of the paper trail they leave and the fees associated with accepting credit and debit cards.

Fortunately, writing a check is easy once you understand how it works.

How to write a check

Writing a check is as easy as following a few simple steps. You can do it in any order as long as you have all the necessary information. But most people move from top to bottom by filling in the necessary blanks.

How to write a check (1)
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How to write a check (2)

1. Write the date

Every check needs a date. Without one, the bank will not accept it. Write today's date on the date line in the upper right corner of the check. You can use any date format as long as it is generally accepted in the country you are in. For example, in the United States, you can type September 30, 2021; September 30, 2021; or 09/30/2021.

It's best to avoid date formats that are mainly used in other countries, especially if you use slashes. For example, in the UK they change the order of the month and date, which can be confusing in the US.

2. Write the recipient's name

Write the legal first and last name of the recipient on the line after the words "Pay by order", without nicknames or abbreviations.

If you are writing a check for multiple parties, separate them with an "and" if both parties must be present to cancel the check, or with an "or" if only one party must be present to cancel the check. Never use other characters such as slashes or hyphens, as the bank teller may misinterpret their meaning.

If you are making the check payable to a business, write the preferred business name on this line (do not include personal names of employees unless requested).

3. Add the dollar amount

In the Dollar Amount field, enter the amount of the check numerically. Example: "$5.75". Always write the first number as close to the left edge of the box as possible and fill in the box as much as possible to prevent the payee from changing the amount of the check. If you want, you can draw a straight or wavy line after the last digit to the end of the box.

4. Spell the dollar amount

Type the dollar amount as text with the cents expressed as a fraction on the dollar amount line. For example, on a check for $150.50 you would write "One hundred fifty and 50/100." Try to fill the entire line with your amount and fill in the open spaces with a straight or wavy line.

5. Add any notes

Write any memo on the check, including the date of service, what you wrote the check for, or an account number on the memo line, which may also be marked "note" or "to." It's okay to leave this section blank, but it's better to add something to refresh your memory later so the redeemer knows what the payment is for or to protect against non-payment claims.

(Video) How to write a check

For example, the service date might be appropriate for a recurring service that you pay for regularly, such as B. A monthly gardening service. This way, you can easily keep track of the period for which the check was written, in case there is a dispute about your late payments.

And if you provide the account number of the service you are paying for, for example B. your cable service or electric bill number, when the check is separated from the bill, the company knows which account to apply the payment to.

Writing down what the check is for is another paper trail you can use to keep track of what you've purchased. That way, if the person you paid wrote the check for a different item, you have proof that the check was for the correct item.

6. Sign the check

It is important to know how to correctly sign a check. Sign your full name on the signature line of the check. Use the exact same signature and spelling of your name known to the bank.

If for example yourcurrent accountPayable to "John M. Hancock", you must sign the check "John M. Hancock".

How to enter the check in your register

Once the check is completed, immediately enter the check details in your check register for tracking and clearing. The check register is the spreadsheet-like booklet that accompanies your checks. Contains the same columns as your check, with rows for entering data for individual checks.

How to write a check (3)

Enter check number

On the first blank line, enter the check number you just filled out in the "Check Number" column, or simply "No."

enter the date

Enter the date you wrote the check in the date column. The column is very small, so it's best to use digits separated by a slash, eg 9/30, and omit the year.

Enter the description of the check.

The space to the right of the check number and date columns is the longer description column. In this space, write the name of the person who wrote the check.

Add check amount

To the right of your description is a column labeled Payment or Amount. Write the dollar amount of the check in numerical form. When the check clears into your bank account, place a check in the small box next to the payment amount.

balance the book

The rightmost column is the balance area. Withdraw the amount of the check from your bank account and write that amount in this field. This number is your new account balance. For example, if your account balance is $500 and you wrote a check for $250, write "$250" in this field.

enter any note

Some check registers also have a memo line. If so, use it to record any important information about the check, such as: B. What month of service the check was paid in or the service account number. For example, you could write "September electric bill, account number 903207204."

how to read a check

Checks have several preprinted sections that the check writer should be aware of. Understanding what information they contain can be helpful when it comes to providing account information for bill payment or direct deposit.

Name and address of the account holder

In the upper left corner of the check is a section containing the name and address of the account holder.

(Video) How to Write a Check Step-by-Step Instructions – Writing Dollars and Cents on Checks

Some people have the check printer add their phone number, date of birth, or driver's license number, as many retailers ask for this information to verify your identity. This is not a good idea, as it makes it less likely that merchants will verify that it's really you.

check the number

In the upper right corner of the check is a short string of numbers, usually four digits. This is the check number that the check writer can use to track it down if there is a problem.

Check numbers rarely start with the number one. If you get a new checking account with a new checkbook, check numbers often start in the hundreds or thousands.

You can also find the check number at the bottom of the check, between the routing number and the account number, or to the right of the account number.

route number

Below the note line is a series of computer generated numbers. Between two symbols and next to the check number and account number is the nine-digit American Banking Association routing number.

Computerized check readers use the routing number to determine the bank of origin of the check. Each bank's classification code is unique, although large national or multinational banks such as Wells Fargo may have more than one.

Account number

The checking account number is the set of computer-generated numbers to the right of the classification code. A computerized check reader combines these numbers with the sort code to find out which bank account the check came from.

Remember that the short string of numbers next to the account number is the check number. It is not part of the account number.

check security

When you write a check, it's important to take steps to make sure a scammer can't get the check and access your funds.Bank account🇧🇷 These tips can help you avoid check fraud that can rob banks.

Use permanent ink

Check scammers can use many tricks to steal your money, and one of the oldest tricks is check washing. It is a process by which criminals intercept checks and chemically remove all information except your signature.

If you use a pencil or erasable ink, the criminal's job will be even easier, requiring only an eraser.

When only your signature remains, the criminal has a blank check to write to himself and withdraw money from your bank account.

When writing a check, always use blue or black gel-based permanent ink.Gel-based ink retains color on paper., making chemically controlled washing almost impossible. Pens and markers are easier to wash off.

Protect your routing and account numbers

If a criminal gets your routing number, there's not much you can do about it. But if they get your sort code and account number, they might as well have your debit card and PIN.

(Video) How to WRITE A CHECK | A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Properly Fill Out a Personal Check

Scammers can easily deposit and withdraw money from your bank account if they have your sort code and account number. Worse yet, these numbers are printed at the bottom of each individual check, so care must be taken when working with checks.

These tips will help you protect those important numbers.

secure storage

Always keep your checkbook in a safe place where no one can access it, such as a B. in a locked drawer or in a safe. If you need to carry it with you, keep it in your front pocket or a secure bag pocket.

send safely

In today's digital world, it's not uncommon to send your classification code and account numbers to employers, banks and other financial institutions via email or messenger for direct deposit and other electronic transactions. While there is no foolproof way to do this, it is important that you do it as carefully as possible using end-to-end encrypted services.

When sending these numbers, it's best to use secure apps likeWhatsappoViber🇧🇷 These messaging services have the necessary encryption to prevent data theft.

If you send the numbers by email, use an encryption service to protect your data. If you want to bypass external encryption services, some email services have strong built-in encryption, for example Gmail. But encryption isn't foolproof, so keep an eye out for unexpected transactions on your account.

If it's not possible to send an encrypted email, you can save the document as a PDF and encrypt the file, or send it as a password-protected file for which only the recipient has the password.

Windows users can useAxCryptGenericName, PCMag 2021 Editors' Choice for encryption, while Mac users can use the system's built-in encryptionPreview app to encrypt PDF files.

If the business has a physical office nearby, it's always safer to submit these account numbers by hand. Ask if this is an option before submitting electronically. You can also go the traditional method and fax or mail the document to the organization.

Enter bank account numbers online

It's also common to enter your sort code and account number online when purchasing products or services, but be careful when doing so. First, make sure that the WiFi you are connected to is secure. Never transfer this data over an open Wi-Fi network, such as a coffee shop or airport.

Also, verify that the site you are entering information on is secure by looking for "https" or the browser's locked padlock at the beginning of the URL. If you are on an "http" site or the lock is red or open, that site is not secure and you should not enter your bank details.

void a check

If you make a mistake filling out the check or need to void it for any other reason, void it so no one else can use it.

There are two generally accepted ways to void a check:

  • Write a large “VOID” in blue or black gel ink on the front of the entire check.
  • Write "VOID" in blue or black gel ink on the date line, payee line, dollar amount field, dollar amount line, and signature line.

You can then safely destroy the check by passing it through a paper shredder or incinerating it.

(Video) Do people still use checks to pay for things?

delete confidential information

The memo line allows you to write notes or other information that can link your check to a specific account within a company.

It's okay to give out your account number with this service, but avoid personal information like your social security number or phone number. It can be tempting when the company you're paying needs this information, but it can be annoying when a criminal intercepts the check.

Frequently asked questions about writing checks

Once you understand the basics of writing and handling checks safely, you'll probably have a few questions about checks from time to time. These are the most common.

Can I cash a check for a later date?

If you don't want the recipient to cash or deposit the check on a specific date, type a later date on the date line. The check is called "postdated." Check your local laws regarding postdated checks, as some states may have specific policies or prohibit them altogether.

Also, a check becomes legal as soon as you sign it, and a bank can withdraw money from your account before you write the check. A bank is not required to honor your publication date. Therefore, only use postdated checks with people you know and trust. And never send it to a company that doesn't verify it before processing the check.

How do I correct an error on a check?

If you make a small mistake, e.g. For example, if you misspelled the recipient's name, you can correct it by crossing out the mistake and retyping what you intended right after, signing next to the mistake to indicate that you agree to the change. If the error is very serious, e.g. B. If you wrote the wrong amount, it's best to void the check entirely and start over.

Can I use a check to receive money?

When you write a check for cash at the bank, you can write "cash" on the payee line. This is called "writing a cash check."

You can give someone else a cash check, but some banks have strict policies against check cashing. If you lose the check or someone steals it, anyone can cash it.

If your bank accepts cash checks, you can use them in an emergency; otherwise, use your ATM card.

Can I write my own check?

There is a safer way to move money between accounts or to get money for yourself in an emergency. Simply write the check to your name on the payee line. You can cash the check or deposit it into your account.

This option is similar to writing a cash check. But it's more secure because only you can deposit or cash the check.

Keep in mind that even though you wrote the check yourself, you still need to follow the bank's cashing rules, such as: B. Proper identification.

Why did the store return my check after scanning it?

The company scanned his check and used the information to create an electronic payment. You no longer need the check and it is returned to you for your records.

Last word

Check writing may be a dying payment method, but it's far from extinct, it's just in danger of extinction. Many organizations and individuals still prefer checks because they are generally exempt from the processing fees associated with cards. Checks also provide a clean paper trail from you to recipient and are free of the pitfalls associated with entering credit and debit card information online.

(Video) Quickbooks 2021 Tutorial for Beginners - How to Write a Check in Quickbooks Desktop

While you may only write a dozen checks a year, it's still a process you need to know how to complete safely.

If you have a load of follow-up checks, you can speed this up by requesting a checkbook for duplicate checks. Under each check is a carbon slip that transfers all the information from the check you just wrote to a duplicate check below. This means that if you forgot to register a check, you can always find the information on the duplicate.


How do you write dollar amounts in words? ›

You can write the amount in words by writing the number of whole dollars first, followed by the word 'dollars'. Instead of the decimal point, you will write the word 'and,' followed by the number of cents, and the word 'cents'. If you want, you can write out the numbers using words too.

How do you write 130 on a check? ›

130 in words is written as One Hundred Thirty.

How do you write 1400 on a check? ›

For a cheque, we generally write 1400 in words as One thousand four hundred rupees only.

How do you write 1600 on a check? ›

1600 in words can be written as One Thousand Six Hundred.

How do you write 2500 on a check? ›

On a cheque, we generally write 2500 as Two thousand five hundred rupees only.

How do you check 1500 in words? ›

1,500 in the word is written as one thousand five hundred.

How do you write 1100.00 on a check? ›

Write Your Rent Amount in Numbers

Just to the right of the “Pay to the order of” field is a blank spot with a dollar sign printed next to it. Here, you write out your rent amount using numbers. For example, if your rent is $1100.00, you'd write “1100.00” in that blank.

Do you write the word dollars on a check? ›

When you write a check to you write in the word dollars when writing out there amount? In the USA, there is no need to do that. The word “dollars” is pre-printed on the check.

How do you write 1000 dollars in words? ›

1000 in Words can be written as One Thousand. If you have saved 1000 dollars, then you can write, “I have just saved One Thousand dollars.” One Thousand is the cardinal number word of 1000 which denotes a quantity.

How do you write 125.00 on a check? ›

Write the Payment Amount In Words

For example, if you are paying $125.00, you will write out “one hundred and twenty five.” To write a check with cents, be sure to put the cents amount over 100.

How do you write a $2800 check? ›

2800 in words is written as Two Thousand Eight Hundred.
What are the Rules to Write 2800 in Words?
  1. Thousands = 2.
  2. Hundreds = 8.
  3. Tens = 0.
  4. Units = 0.

How do you write 180 on a check? ›

180 in words is one hundred eighty.

How do you write $1700 on a check? ›

1700 in words is written as “One thousand seven hundred”.

How do you write 3100 on a check? ›

3100 in words is written as Three thousand one hundred.

How do you write 13000.00 on a check? ›

On a cheque, we generally write 13000 in words as Thirteen thousand rupees only.

How do you write a check for $1800 in words? ›

1800 in words – One Thousand Eight Hundred.

How do you write $1300 on a check? ›

1300 in words is written as One Thousand Three Hundred.

How do you write 15900 on a check? ›

15900 in words is written as Fifteen Thousand Nine Hundred.

How do you write a check for $3000 in words? ›

The spelling of 3000 in English words is Three thousand, which means 3000 in words can be expressed as Three thousand.

How do you write 2400 in words on a check? ›

About the Number 2400

2400 in words – Two Thousand Four Hundred.

How do you write 2200 on a check? ›

2200 in words is written as “Two thousand two hundred”.

How do you write a check for $1250 in words? ›

Frequently Asked Questions on 1250 in Words

1250 can be written as “One Thousand Two Hundred Fifty” in words.

How do you write $1150 in words? ›

1150 can be written in words as “One Thousand One Hundred Fifty”.

How do you write $1550 on a check? ›

On a cheque, we generally write 1550 in words as One Thousand Five Hundred Fifty.

How do you write 2300.00 on a check? ›

Therefore 2300 in words is written as Two Thousand Three Hundred.

How do you write out 14900 on a check? ›

14900 can be written as “Fourteen Thousand Nine Hundred” in words.

How do you write 11 000 on a check? ›

11000 in words is written as Eleven thousand.

How do you write 350 on a check? ›

350 in words is written as Three Hundred and Fifty.

How do you write 1050 on a check? ›

The number 1050 is spelt as One thousand and fifty, i.e. 1050 is One thousand and fifty.

How do you write 900 on a check? ›

How do you write 900 in words on a cheque? On a cheque, we generally write 900 in words as Nine hundred rupees only.

Do you write USD before or after the number? ›

USD is the international currency code established by the ISO to represent the American dollar. It is composed of the country code ( US ), followed by the letter "D" for "dollar." Write the dollar figure first, followed by a non-breaking space and the code: 350 000 USD.

Do you put commas in money? ›

United States (U.S.) currency is formatted with a decimal point (.) as a separator between the dollars and cents. Some countries use a comma (,) instead of a decimal to indicate that separation.

How do you write $100 000? ›

Therefore, the number 100000 in words is One Hundred Thousand. Also, read: Numbers in Words. Number Name 1 to 50.

How do you write a check for thousands of dollars? ›

It's always best to keep your payments moving smoothly so that you and your check's recipient don't have to deal with questions from a bank. Examples: Write "one thousand two hundred" instead of "twelve hundred." Write “five thousand” instead of “five K.”

How do you write a check for $2500 in words? ›

Frequently Asked Questions on 2500 in Words

We can write 2500 in words as twenty-five hundred or two thousand five hundred.

How do you write 2000 in numbers? ›

Two Thousand in numerals is written as 2000.

How do you write 2200 dollars on a check? ›

2200 in words is written as “Two thousand two hundred”.


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