Writing checks is an easy and important skill every adult should know. To write a check, fill in the current date on the line in the upper right corner, the name of the recipient in the “Pay” field, the numerical amount next to the dollar sign ($), and the written form of the same amount on the line beneath; sign the check on the bottom right line and consider adding a “memo” about the check’s purpose on the lower left line. The more often you write checks, the more natural the process will become.
Writing a Check
Write the date on the line in the upper right-hand corner. There will be a blank space next to or above the word “Date.” Remember that a check is a legal document, and the date written here should always be the day that you sign the bottom of the check.
Write the name of the recipient. Write the name of the person or company you’re sending the check to next to the line that says “Pay to the Order of.” If it’s a company and you’re not sure exactly what it’s called, make sure you get that information right before you write the check. You can also just pay the check to “Cash,” but be careful, because that means that anyone can cash it.
If it’s to an individual, include both their first and last names. If they are a ‘Jr.’ or a ‘Sr.’ you should include this as well.
If the check is going to an organization, write out its full name. Do not use acronyms unless explicitly given permission.
A check is a legal document because it is signed and dated, and the recipient needs to sign it also. The bank is a legal institution that can deny the check being cashed/deposited with missing information.
Write the amount of the check to the right of the dollar sign. Write the exact amount, using dollars and cents. If the check is for twenty dollars, write “20.00.”
Write the monetary amount of the check in word form below the “Pay to the Order of” line. Make sure you also express the number of cents if there are cents, or write “even” at the end of the amount so that another person doesn’t add more money to the amount. If you’ve written a check for $20.00, write either “Twenty dollars and 0/100 cents,” “Twenty dollars even,” or just “Twenty” with a line running all the way from the right of the word to the end of the line.
Sign the check on the line in the bottom right corner. Your check will be invalid if it is not personally signed.
Fill out the memo section on the bottom left of the check. Though this part of the check is optional, it can be helpful to write a note to yourself or the recipient to remember what the check is for. You can write “For May rent” if you’re sending a rent check. Also, many companies or landlords require that you provide some other information in the memo section; some companies require you to write your ID number in the “Memo” section, and if you’re writing a rent check for your apartment, you should write the apartment # right in the memo section.