March 11, 2008

4 Safety Tips for Writing a Personal Check

Posted in finance tagged , , , , , , at 8:54 pm by Jon Symons

For anyone that has little experience in check writing, it is strongly recommended that you read on. Although, safely writing a check may not be the hardest thing you’ll ever do, it is one of the most important.

Use Ink Only

use a pen to write personal checksAlways use a pen to write a check to prevent any kind of tampering with the check. Never use a pencil when you are check writing because someone whod prefer to fill in the blanks with the amount they’d like to receive could easily erase your pencil marks. To avoid dishing out blank checks to people, be sure to use some kind of ink. Although a pen is acceptable according to most people, it is wise to use a permanent marker if possible. This is significant due to those occurrences in which people have committed “check washing”, which is a process in which criminals use chemicals to remove checks’ ink. A permanent marker prevents this possibility.

Dating and Identifying Tips

Upon first glance at the check, it might seem complicated to the inexperienced. If you know all of the information, however, the blanks are very easy to fill out. To start with, enter the current date on the check. It is illegal to post-date a check so always recheck the date that you put on the check. Once this has been completed, be certain to write the name of the person who shall be the recipient of the check on the “pay to the order of” line of the check. Make sure that you’ve accurately written the business name or the person’s first and last name.

Filling in the Amount

The foremost piece of information on the check is the amount of money you want the Bank to pay. This information will need to be inputted twice. The first place to put the information is in the dollar amount line. You’ll find this just under the line that says “PAY TO THE ORDER OF.” Include the full amount and any cents that are involved in the transaction. You need to complete this portion of the check thoroughly to avoid another from changing your numbers. Look at the right side of the check. Put the numbers you see there in the amount box.

Sign the Check Properly

Signing the check may be the last but not the least part of check writing. Be absolutely certain to sign the check with your own unique, standard signature, very stylistically similar to the one printed on your driver’s license. You could face the hassle of questions and accusations about fraud if you don’t sign the check with your standard signature. Deviations can cause the bank to red flag your check. Given how much check fraud and forgery is going on these days, banks are vigilant against suspicious-looking signatures that do not match up against your normal signature. The info section is somehow optional. Many people elect to make a quick note of what the check was for, just to keep their own bookkeeping records straight. Speaking broadly, you will be better off providing as much information as possible.

In general, it isn’t difficult to write a check. However, check writing isn’t something that should be taken lightly. Be certain to take a great deal of care in filling out each section of the check as carefully and completely as possible, so as to minimize the possibility that your check will be manipulated. This will prevent future headaches from occurring.

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