Many people do not understand how to write a check1 when they have to do it for the first time. Though there is nothing difficult about it, you should pay attention to some things if you want to avoid mistakes.
The short instructions below will explain you, step by step, how to write a check. The pictures will help you to do everything right.
First of all, you should insert the current date in the special field. The date may be written in any format, but you must write in the year, month and date.
Find the line saying, "Pay to the order of", and write in the name of the payee2. If this is a check to a private person, write his/her first and last names. If it is meant for some organization, fill in its name in the way that they asked you to do it.
Amount in Numbers
Now you should write in your payment's amount. It must be in numeric form. Write it as far to the left as you can. It will prevent a swindler from adding some extra numbers.
Amount in Words
Write in the same amount using words. It helps to elude confusion. You just need to mention how many dollars you are going to pay. If you see the word "dollars" typed on the check, do not write it once more.
Use a fraction for writing cents. For example, if the amount of your payment is .25, you should write "Ten and 25/100".
Draw a line through the empty place up to the word "Dollars". It will make it more difficult for anyone to add something there.
Next to the word "For" you can mention what you pay for or write some other information. Your payee can ask you to write an invoice number or your account number in this field.
Sign the check. Your signature must be legible and the same that you have signed in the bank's documents.
Writing a Check Safely
Now that you know how to write a check, we will give you some tips on how to write it safely.
Always use capital letters in your checks when you write the payee's name or the amount. Caps are much harder to alter.
Never sign blank checks.
Never leave space in checks where scammers can add any digits. Draw lines there.
You can demand a carbon copy3 of your check if the bank provides this service.
Always sign checks in the same way. Consistent signatures help banks to identify fraudulent checks.
Never write checks in pencil. Use ink for it.
You should not write out checks which are payable to "Cash", because anyone will be able to use it if the check is lost.
Start using online bill pay services.
We hope that these pieces of advice will be helpful to you.