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What are the basics of writing checks?

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Quick Answer

To fill out a check, first write the current date on the date line, explains Investopedia. Under "Pay to the order of," fill in the person, company or institution you are paying with your check. Enter the amount to be paid in the box, and then write out the amount in the form "dollars and cents/100" on the line below. Include a memo on the memo line if desired, and sign the check at the bottom right.

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Full Answer

The memo section on checks in optional, states Investopedia. Most people use it to either include an account number or to write a reminder of what the check was for, such as "rent" or "water bill." Draw in a line after the written amount to fill up the extra space and help avoid check tampering , suggests MoneyAndStuff.info. For instance, on a check for $75.89, write "Seventy-five and 89/100 ---------------" on the line below the box.

In the past some people post-dated their checks by writing in a later date than the current one, explains Investopedia. However, the enactment of The Clearing for the 21st Century Act in 2004 makes it no longer possible to delay deposit of a check by post-dating it. The Clearing for the 21st Century Act partially computerized the check-processing system, negating the need to physically transfer checks from place to place.

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