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How to Write a Check - Cheque Writing 101

What is a Check?

Checks are used to pay bills or to buy goods or services. According to Wikipedia, a check is a "negotiable instrument instructing a financial institution to pay a specific amount of a specific currency from a specified demand account held in the maker/depositor's name with that institution."

Many people today prefer to pay their bills electronically through the Internet. However, there are still many people who prefer to use paper checks. Paper checks are not going to disappear soon so it is important that you know how to write a check.

How to Write a Check

  1. Write your name on the top left hand side of the check. You can get this pre-printed on the checks you order from your bank.
  2. Write the proper date in the space provided on the right hand side of the check.
  3. Fill in the "pay to the order of" area with the name of the person or company to whom you are sending the check.
  4. Fill in the dollar amount you wish to make the check out for in the box on the right side of the check (it usually has a $ sign at the beginning and contains a decimal point.) Make sure the numbers are close together and right up against the decimal point so they can't be manipulated.
  5. Write out the dollar amount (ie. one hundred dollars) and write any cents in as a fraction of 100 (please see the above illustration.) Make sure you draw a line from where you stop writing to the cents area so that it can't be manipulated.
  6. Fill in the memo field in the bottom left of the check with either an account number for the bill you are paying or information on what the check was for.
  7. Sign your name in the provided field on the bottom right of the check. Make sure you use a similar signature to the one your bank has on record.


It's That Simple

And there you have it, how to write a check. If you make a mistake on any of the fields in the check you can fix it, but initial it so that the bank knows you are aware that a change was made on the check.

Video Instruction on How to Write a Check

 Last updated on March 25, 2011

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Comments 26 comments

Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 20 months ago from Orlando, FL Level 6 Commenter

Very interesting! I learned how to write a check in junior high, but I guess some schools have never taught it. Great hub!!

Docmo profile image

Docmo 20 months ago from UK Level 1 Commenter

My good friend MArtie always has a dictum for hubs K.I.S.S: keep it short and simple. This hub is an elegant example of that. Useful, informative and tells it as it is . I do miss writing cheques as these days we seem to be doing a lot more online transactions and cards- there's something elegant about writing a cheque. thanks for the info!

Nitin Ward 24 months ago

if I have my electronic signature on my cheque leaf. do i still need to sign.

i have to sign 124 cheques. but all my signatures ultimately is diffrent on maximum leaf.

any suggestion.

Regards

ashraf 2 years ago

how write chequ ask combany name

Seneha 2 years ago

How do I write chq of 1,200

rein 2 years ago

hye, how do i write down the amount of 226,601.00 ?

sathish 2 years ago

How to write indian Rupee cheque

rishan 2 years ago

your demo is helpful

shahnawaz 3 years ago

Thanx n keep it up..

Uninvited Writer profile image

Uninvited Writer 3 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario Hub Author

Actually no, I spelled it both ways :)

Lainey 3 years ago

Thank you for the help :) I just got cheques a few weeks ago and this is my first time writing one out.

Oh and a Hint** you spelled cheques wrong.

umairsheikh2002 profile image

umairsheikh2002 3 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan

Everyone need check because we cannot give our personal debit card.

LornaP 3 years ago

Good info-easy to understand-my daughter was using this for a homework assignment. It's worth mentioning a few safety tips-like never leaving the payee line blank after signing it and waiting to sign a check made out to cash when you are at the bank. (found here: http://www.sophisticatededge.com/how-to-write-a-ch...

Research Analyst profile image

Research Analyst 4 years ago

do people still write checks? LOL the debit card is so much faster

Uninvited Writer profile image

Uninvited Writer 4 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario Hub Author

Thanks Keith :)

KeithTax profile image

KeithTax 4 years ago from Wisconsin

This blows my mind. The number of people that can't write a check or reconcile their checkbook is amazing. I see it in my accounting office all the time. This is not solely an issue with poor or uneducated people; I see several people a year that are intelligent, educated, and highly paid that can not write a check. Serveral times a week a client hands us a signed check and tells us to fill it in because they don't know how.

I am going to link this to my website and direct client to review this important and informative article.

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Uninvited Writer 4 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario Hub Author

You would write Three thousand...

carol 4 years ago

how do i write a cheque that reads 3000.00$ in wordss?

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Uninvited Writer 4 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario Hub Author

I learned how to do it in grade 9 book keeping :)

Thanks for commenting.

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 4 years ago from Southern California, USA Level 3 Commenter

This would be a good hub for teachers in elementary school, especially for teaching money knowledge. I remember how in fourth grade we were given imaginary dollars and had to balance our check book, which was a very helpful assignment.

cashmere profile image

cashmere 4 years ago from India Level 1 Commenter

We don't have a memo field in cheques in India. And your name is already printed on it.

BristolBoy profile image

BristolBoy 4 years ago from Bristol Level 1 Commenter

I might just do that Uninvited Writer!

Ralph Deeds profile image

Ralph Deeds 4 years ago Level 4 Commenter

I was taught to write out the complete amount on the second line as

follows: "One hundred fifty-five & sixty-seven/100 dollars." Of course the purpose of writing out all the numbers is to provide a written out version of the numbers in case they are not written clearly or in error.

Uninvited Writer profile image

Uninvited Writer 4 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario Hub Author

Thanks for the comments. Why don't you guys answer the request about how to write checks in other countries?

Iphigenia 4 years ago

Cheques vary from country to country - here in France we must also write the location in which the cheque is written - there is even a space on the cheque where this information must be written and the cheque is invalid if it's not completed. All cheques written in shops etc must be presented with a photo ID - the number of which is written on the back of the cheque by the vendor/service provider.

BristolBoy profile image

BristolBoy 4 years ago from Bristol Level 1 Commenter

I was thinking of writing a hub explaining how to write a check myself, mainly due to my own problems with doing it, but you beat me to it. However, it is interesting to note that US checks are slightly different to those in the UK by the looks of things!

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