How to Write a Check

Jason Butler
5 min readApr 5, 2022


Do people still write checks? The answer is an absolute yes! Although it is easy to say that people don’t nearly write as many checks as they used to, due to the advancement in technology that has introduced the “card swipe,” system of payment, checks are still very relevant in today’s world of business. The culture of writing checks is still hanging around a bit longer.

With that being the case, if you were to ask a lot of younger individuals, you might be surprised to know that they don’t know how to write a check anymore. Some will even tell you that they don’t know what a personal check looks like. That’s not good because it is still widely accepted in financial institutions. With t hat said, what was once common for everyone now has people struggling.

Thankfully, my mother taught me years ago how to write a check. If you don’t know how to write one, you’re in luck. Today’s post will show you how to write a check. Below, you will see a sample check.


Write Out The Date Clearly

The date line is at the top of each check. That area is for the date. You must include the month, day, and year. You should make sure that you put the current date. An example of how the date would look is 8/26/22.

If you would like your check to have a more personalized feel, you are equally permitted to write in a Month, Day, and Year format. What this means is that unlike the former, you’ll have an opportunity to inscribe the alphabet of the month. An example of this would be “August 26, 2022.”

Writing a date on your check, in any of these formats is so important because, without it, it will not be valid. So, the next time you have to fill a check, don’t be in so much of a hurry that you neglect this essential step.


Write The Name Of The Recipient

You will see an area that says pay to the order of. In this section, you will be required to write out the payee’s name. Make sure you use the person’s official name. Nicknames or other things should not be written on a check at all. That will make the check invalid and the bank teller will not cash it.

If you have to write a check for a business, contact the business to see who you need to make your check out to. With some companies, you can write the owner’s name on the check. While for others, you will have to write it out to the company.

Always ensure that you address the name of the recipient properly and let your writing be legible.


Write The Amount of Money In Numbers

This box is used to write the dollar amount of the check-in numbers. If you are observant enough, you’ll already see that the bank has helped you to indicate the dollar currency sign.

You will need to write out the numerical value. That is to say, if you had an outstanding bill of $500 to pay your trainer, you only need to indicate “500.00” in the check.

Also, make sure you use a decimal place to separate dollars and cents. For example, if you are writing a check for $15.95, it would need to look like “15.95.” In this case, 95 is the cent amount.


Write Out The Amount in Words

In this case, you are expected to write the amount of the check, in words. If you have some cents in your amount, you will put the cents over 100.

Writing the amount this way is like a 2-step verification, and it is required because our writings are all so different. What the cashier might not clearly see if you wrote the amount in numbers, they have a better chance of doing a double check by reading the amount in words.

This section is located below the recipient line, making it very easy to find and fill. A practical example of that is if you are writing a check for $10.20, it will look like this: Ten and 20/100 dollars. If there aren’t any cents, you will write 00/100.


Optional Memo

Next up is the section that is located on the bottom left. This area is for the memo. If you are not sure of what to write here, the good news is, it is optional. You don’t have to add anything to the memo line of the check.

If you do, then it is just a note or description of what the check is for. For example, if you are paying a bill, you would put bill payments on the memo line. If it’s for rent, you can write rent check. It doesn’t need to be a paragraph; it just needs to be a short sentence or a few words.


Append Your Signature

That is the final area of your check. You should sign your name right away because every check needs to be signed. Sometimes people may forget to do it. Without your signature, the check is no good. It can’t be cashed or deposited. You will need to get that check signed by the person who issued it, and if you are the one issuing it, then sign it.

Numbers at the Bottom

The numbers at the bottom of the check are important too. The first nine numbers are the routing number. The routing number is used to identify your bank or credit union. The next group of numbers is your account number. The final numbers are the check number. It can also be found in the top right corner above the date.

There you have it. You now know how to write a check. It wasn’t hard at all, was it? Even though people don’t write checks as often anymore, it is something you should still know how to do. Paper checks are still around. People still use personal checks depending on what the situation is. If you decide to write a check, make sure that you check the information and make sure sure that you fill it out correctly. It’s good to know because you may get that one person who still accepts payments via check.

If you write a check, make sure that you balance your checkbook. Also, make sure that you have the funds in your account. If you don’t you will get a bounced check due to insufficient funds. When a check bounces, it will not process. Also, you may get an overdraft charge. Make sure that you pay attention to your bank account balance.

Do you know how to write a check? Do you still write checks?

Originally published at on April 5, 2022.



Jason Butler

Founder of, which is a website where I discuss side hustles, debt, and travel. Current debt: $38,985.71