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How to Write a Check

Fill out checks correctly so that the bank and payee can clearly read them.


  • Step 1: Fill in the date Write the date on the line usually located at the top right of the check. Use the current date or a future date to post-date the check.
  • Step 2: Write in the payee Write the name of the payee on the line next to the words "pay to the order of." This is the name of the person or business that will be receiving the check.
  • Step 3: Write in the numerical amount Write the numerical dollar amount in the small box next to the dollar sign.
  • TIP: Write the dollar amount close to the left side of the box to prevent someone from adding an extra number to the amount.
  • Step 4: Write the amount in words Write the dollar amount in words along the line next to the word "dollars." Then write a fraction for cents, with the number of cents over one hundred.
  • TIP: After the last word or fraction, draw a line all the way to the printed word "dollars." This will prevent anyone from adding more to the line.
  • Step 5: Sign the check Sign the check on the line at the bottom right portion of the check. The check will be invalid if it isn't signed.
  • Step 6: Write a memo Write a note on the memo line in the bottom left portion of the check. This is good for any additional information the payee may need, or to clarify the purpose of the check.
  • FACT: Did you know? A study from December 2005 found that 37.5 percent of bills were paid with paper checks.

You Will Need

  • A personal check
  • A pen

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