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
- 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.
- Write the proper date in the space provided on the right hand side of the check.
- Fill in the "pay to the order of" area with the name of the person or company to whom you are sending the check.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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
Prateek Jain from Madhya Pradesh, India on January 19, 2020:
Wonderful article, I am.also.a banker and noticed that many people write checks wrongly and later due to discrepancies it got rejected from clearing process and later they again fill another check with correct whereas this process take alot of time and discomfort the business. Your article will surely help many of the people's around.
MariaDPettiford on September 25, 2017:
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Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on August 20, 2012:
Very interesting! I learned how to write a check in junior high, but I guess some schools have never taught it. Great hub!!
Mohan Kumar from UK on August 20, 2012:
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 on April 30, 2012:
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 different on maximum leaf.
ashraf on March 08, 2012:
how write chequ ask combany name
Seneha on February 20, 2012:
How do I write chq of 1,200
rein on February 13, 2012:
hye, how do i write down the amount of 226,601.00 ?
sathish on December 28, 2011:
How to write indian Rupee cheque
rishan on October 06, 2011:
your demo is helpful
shahnawaz on January 05, 2011:
Thanx n keep it up..
Susan Keeping (author) from Kitchener, Ontario on November 01, 2010:
Actually no, I spelled it both ways :)
Lainey on November 01, 2010:
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 from Karachi, Pakistan on October 14, 2010:
Everyone need check because we cannot give our personal debit card.
LornaP on August 11, 2010:
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 on April 07, 2010:
do people still write checks? LOL the debit card is so much faster
Susan Keeping (author) from Kitchener, Ontario on December 29, 2009:
Thanks Keith :)
Keith Schroeder from Wisconsin on December 29, 2009:
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.
Susan Keeping (author) from Kitchener, Ontario on November 13, 2009:
You would write Three thousand...
carol on November 13, 2009:
how do i write a cheque that reads 3000.00$ in wordss?
Susan Keeping (author) from Kitchener, Ontario on May 07, 2009:
I learned how to do it in grade 9 book keeping :)
Thanks for commenting.
SweetiePie from Southern California, USA on May 06, 2009:
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 from India on May 06, 2009:
We don't have a memo field in cheques in India. And your name is already printed on it.
BristolBoy from Bristol on May 05, 2009:
I might just do that Uninvited Writer!
Ralph Deeds from Birmingham, Michigan on May 05, 2009:
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.
Susan Keeping (author) from Kitchener, Ontario on May 05, 2009:
Thanks for the comments. Why don't you guys answer the request about how to write checks in other countries?
Iphigenia on May 04, 2009:
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 from Bristol on May 04, 2009:
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!