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How to use a check














1. Date: Fill in the date in the blank line in the upper right corner of the check. The month/day/year format is standard for the United States. This is extremely important as it lets the bank know when you wrote the check, and shows you if the check is postmarked, which means it must be cashed or past the date on the check.  


2. The recipient's name:  Write the recipient's name on the blank line after the phrase "Pay to Order From". This could be an individual, an organization or a business — whoever the check is. For an individual, be sure to include their first and last name, and for an organization or company, use their full name.  


3. Quantity (numerical form):  In the box to the right of the recipient's name, fill in the amount in dollars and cents using numbers. Be sure to write the amount as close to the left side of the check as possible to avoid someone writing a new amount.  


4. Quantity (expanded word form):  The dollar amount must also be written as an expanded word on the blank line below the recipient's name. Cents, however, should be written in fraction form and written small to ensure that the entire amount can be written down, as this is the amount legally recognized on the check you write.  


5. Subscription:  Sign your name on the line at the bottom right of the check. Your signature is required — the recipient will not be able to cash the check without it.  


6. Memo (optional):  At the bottom left is a line where you can, if you choose, write down what the check is, or write in your account number for, say, the utility company you're paying with that check. It can also indicate that the recipient should apply the money to what you owe and not to some other item. For example, if you are using the check to pay something at your child's school, you can write their name on the memo line.  


A. Routing number:  The first sequence of numbers represents your financial institution's routing transit number. This code identifies your bank, allowing the check to be routed to the right place for processing.  

B. Account number:  The second string of numbers is your unique account number. It was assigned by the bank when you opened the checking account.  


C.Check number:  The last sequence of numbers is the verification number. It is also highlighted at the top of the check, below the date. It helps you to track the payment later if needed.  


Special Considerations: 

When you cash a check made to you, it needs to be endorsed, which means you sign the back of the check on the appropriate line and add the date. Most banks provide a few blank lines and a mark to indicate where to sign the check. You must sign in the right place, or the check could be voided.  

You can deposit a check after you have endorsed it, at a cashier window or an ATM at a branch of your bank. You can also deposit electronically by taking a photo of the front and back of an endorsed check and using your bank's deposit app. 

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