Despite the fact that checks are not frequently in use as they were a decade ago, having proper knowledge of check endorsement is very important.
Once a check is written, there is an important need for the endorsement. This is because, without endorsing the check, you can’t cash or deposit it.
Truly, check endorsements differ, and depend on why the check is being issued. Therefore, before you deposit or cash out a check, you need to be careful about signing over it.
When endorsing a check, it is important to sign the back of the check. This signifies whether you’re endorsing the check for deposit or to cash the funds with a bank or third-party.
Need help with tips on check endorsement? This article will serve as a guide on what you need to do while endorsing a check. Below is a table of what to expect, while you relax and read.
Table of contents
What is check endorsement?
Check endorsement is when you sing the back of your check.
In some cases, it’s not clear who should sign the check. Notwithstanding, the person receiving the check needs to endorse it. This is because the writer of the check already signed in front of the check.
READ ALSO: 10 Best Joint Checking Accounts In 2023
Why Do You Need to Endorse Checks?
It is difficult to deposit a check in your bank account and get paid without approval. This is majorly why you need to endorse checks. By supporting a check, you authorize the bank to collect payment.
You endorse a check by signing at the back, which indicates “endorse here“.
In addition, endorsing a check makes the recipient the only person who can legally collect money from the checkwriter’s account. Thus, using and endorsing a check has a top security advantage.
Signing the back of a cheque is a security step that helps verify you as the proper recipient of the funds. Also, it helps to authorize the bank to complete the transaction.
Types of check endorsement
- Blank endorsement. This is the most accessible type of check endorsement. The term “blank endorsement” doesn’t mean that an endorsement is blank. Rather, it means the endorsement includes the payee’s signature with no further instructions.
All you need to do is to sign your name in the endorsement area behind your check slip.
- Restrictive endorsement. This type of endorsement helps ensure that a check gets deposited into the right account. It includes your signature and the words, “for deposit only.” A check endorsed this way can be deposited into a bank account but not cashed. If you write “for deposit only” and include a bank account number, the check can be deposited only into that account. Some banks require payees to endorse a check with “for mobile deposit only” to deposit a check remotely with a mobile banking app. This is a safe type of check endorsement. The reason is that even if the check is lost or stolen, it’s more difficult for them to get the money.
- Endorsement in full. This type of endorsement creates a “third-party check” that you can give to someone else, who can then endorse it and cash or deposit it. To create a third-party check, write “Pay to the order of” and the name of the person to receive the funds in the endorsement space, and then sign your name under that instruction.
How do I correct a check endorsement?
Correcting a wrong check endorsement is feasible, but you can still void the check and start a new one.
However, if your mistake is fixable, draw a neat line through your error and write the correction right above it.
Well, it is important for you to note that not all mistakes can be corrected. For instance, if you wrote the wrong amount of money in the written section, then this can’t be corrected. It also won’t be accepted by the bank.
Also, if the amount written in the box is correct, but the amount written in words is wrong, you will need to void the check and write another one.
Here are ways you can correct a wrongly endorsed check:
- If you misspelled a name, wrote a wrong date, or wrong numerical check amount, you can correct it by simply drawing a line across.
This should be done neatly with a blue or black pen, and not a pencil. In fact, someone could easily erase your writing and try to use the check.
- Write the correction above the mistake neatly.
- Write your initials next to the corrected mistake. For instance, if your name is John Smith Maxwell, then, you should write J.S.M above the misspelled name.
- Lastly, if you’re worried your bank won’t accept your check, call or visit them to ask them before submitting it.
How to write/fill a check before endorsing it
Probably, you don’t get to write a check every day, or perhaps, you’ve never written a check before. Checks are an effective and inexpensive tool for moving money; filling it doesn’t take ages.
Don’t sign a check until after you’ve filled it out. Also, use a pen whenever you write a check. If you use a pencil, anybody with an eraser can change the amount of your check and the payee’s name.
If you want a paper record of every check you write, get checkbooks with carbon copies.
READ ALSO: How To Write A Check: Fill Out Check With These Steps
Here’s a guide on how to fill a check correctly:
- Write the date in the top right corner. In fact, it’s better you write today’s date. This helps you and the recipient of the money to keep accurate records. For example: 01/01/2022 or Jan 1, 2022.
- Add the name of the recipient next to “Pay to”. Be sure of who you are sending the money to. This is to avoid making any mistake. For instance: Mary Smith.
- Write the value to be paid in numbers next to the “$” symbol. Write your payment amount in the small box on the right-hand side. There’s no need to write your own dollar sign. Make sure you write out the amount immediately after the $ sign.
Also, if you are paying some dollars and cents, you should add a decimal immediately after you write the dollar amount out. For example: “8.50” meaning eight dollars and 50 cents.
- Write out with words the amount of the payment on the long line. This will be the official amount of your payment. So, ensure it’s the same as the numeric amount you wrote. For instance, you can write “eight dollars and 50 cents”, instead of “8.50” on the line beside the Dollars.
- Sign with your signature in the bottom right. If you’ve correctly filled out the other parts of the check, then, you should sign it. Sign legibly, just as you always do on any legal document.
- Add a note where it says “memo” or “re:” in the bottom left corner. This is not compulsory, but optional. The memo line serves as a reminder of why you wrote the check. Most checks have a line to sign on.
The best places to order checks online in 2023
If your bank does not give you free checks, you need to order them from somewhere else. In fact, you can order personal checks from anywhere you like.
However, before you order your checks, you’ll need some vital information. That includes the account number, routing number, contact information, and some other basic bank information.
You can find the routing and account number at the bottom of any check.
Order your checks online from any of these websites:
How to endorse a check; Do this while endorsing a check
When done correctly, endorsements make using checks easy. On the other hand, when done wrong, endorsements can make using checks difficult, complicated, or even fraudulent.
Check endorsements differ, depending on the reason the check is being issued. Therefore, the steps that you follow to endorse the check correctly will depend on the type of endorsement made.
Nonetheless, some checks just require a signature on the reverse of the check. On the other hand, others require specific language and additional information for a valid endorsement.
To be endorsed correctly, the name signed on the back of the check needs to match the payee name written on the front of the check. If your name was misspelled or miswritten, sign it with the incorrect version, and then sign again using the correct name.
Where to Endorse
Most checks have a 1.5-inch section for you to write in. This section, known as the endorsement area, is marked with lines and instructions saying, “Do not write, stamp, or sign below this line.”
Now that you know what it means to endorse a check, and of course, how to support a check, you have to follow the necessary procedures needed to endorse a check.
Remember, when you have a check that requires you to endorse it prior to depositing, you should always wait until you present the check to a bank teller prior to endorsing it.
If you lose a check after you’ve endorsed it, anyone who finds it can deposit/cash the amount.
- A guide to using checks
- How to Fix Mistakes Made when Writing Checks
- Guide on How to Write a Check
- U.S. News
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