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How to write checks?

Learning how to write a cheque (also known as a personal check) is a straightforward but important skill for anyone using their first bank account. Incorrectly writing a cheque might cost you a significant amount of money in bank charges. Writing a cheque also has an element of security, which you should follow closely before you turn it in to a recipient.

The date

Fill in the date Look to the top right hand corner of your cheque and you will see the word "date:" with an empty line next to it. Here, you must write the day's date, or post date a cheque if you do not want it to become valid until the future, for example.

The payee

Person or company name The second step to filling in a cheque is writing the recipient's name, whether this is a company, organisation or person. Write the name exactly as it appears on their account. So, if the recipient's bank account is Mr. J Bloggs, write the exact name next to the word "pay". Do not worry about filling all three lines of space available, as you will use this for other information.

The amount

In numbers Fill in the value of the cheque in the separate box on the right of the cheque, normally marked just by an English pound symbol next to a rectangular box. Do not write a second Pound symbol, rather just write the value of the cheque including two decimal places — even if you are sending a round number, such as 50 Pounds, you would write "50.00". Make sure you include the decimal place and make it clear, otherwise your cheque may be mistaken for the wrong amount. In words Write the value of the cheque in numbers on the second line available in the centre of the cheque.
Make sure that the amount you write in words matches the amount written in numerals in the box next to the Pound symbol. You must also include the word "only" after you have written, as this prevents the cheque from being tampered with at a later stage. If you plan to send someone a cheque for £26.78, for example, you would write "Twenty six pounds and seventy eight pence only".

The bottom line

Line for security
Draw an horizontal line through any blank parts of the cheque that are left after you have written the full amount in words, as this prevents anyone from adding more numbers to the cheque. Signature Place your signature on the line or in the box at the bottom right of the cheque.
Often, your bank will have printed your name in black ink somewhere near this box.

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