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Guide on Writing a Check
June 28, 2018
It’s getting closer. You will soon be an adult. You will get to experience all the excitement, independence and freedom that comes with it. You will also get to experience the downside … primarily paying bills. Common practices include the convenience of using a debit card, the can’t forget method of automatic payments or the ease of setting up a one-time transfer from your bank account each month. That should take care of everything, right? Unfortunately, no, it won’t.
Eventually, you will need to write a check. There are those places that still do not accept other forms of payment. Your future rent is probably one example. If you’re one of the lucky ones, your parents have taught you how to write a check and balance your checkbook. Schools already have an overfull curriculum and something had to be cut. Understanding checking accounts was one of those cuts.
If you’re not one of the lucky ones, we are here to help. It is a simple process, so here are the few steps you need to know.
1. Write the date on the top right line. A check is a legal document, so the date should match the date you sign the check.
2. Write the recipient of the check on the next line. The line will be labeled “Pay to the Order of”. If it is to an individual, you will need their legal first and last name. Do not use nicknames. If it is to a company, write the full company name. Do not use acronyms, unless you are directed to do so by someone at the company. If you just need cash for yourself and can’t find an ATM, you may also put “Cash” as the recipient.
3. Write the amount of the check to the right of the dollar sign. You will need to list both dollars and cents.
4. Under the “Pay to the Order of line” is another line. This is where you write out the amount in word form. For example, a check for $20 would be written as “Twenty dollars and 00/100” on that line. You can also write just “Twenty” and draw a line all the way to the left edge of the line you’re writing on.
5. Next sign the line at the bottom right corner with your legal name. No nicknames work here either.
6. On the bottom left is a memo line. This line is optional and can be filled in with what the check was for.
That’s it. You can now write a check. It’s a simple process that you will eventually need to know.
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