How to read a check. How to read MICR codes:
What are the different areas of a check?
How do I read the MICR or check code line?
What are the features of a check.
How can I understand the layout of a check?
how to read a check, understand the check format, and
review the individual parts that make up a typical check?
The example above is a personal check. Each numbered
section is defined below:
1. Account Holder Name, Account Holder
Address, Account Holder Phone number, and Account Holder Email
Address can appear in this section of the check called the
2. The Bank Name, City and State of the processing facility, or
the city and state of the account holder's branch, the bank's
phone number, the banks website address and/or the bank's email
address may appear in this section. This section can also
be located above field 7, the memo field.
3. The check number appears at the top right, shown here as 101.
4. Pay to the order of: This section should have the name of the
person or company that is being paid. The name of the
party getting the money.
5. The amount written numerically. If this check were for
one hundred dollars, within the box labeled "5" in the example
above, it should read, "$100.00"
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6. The amount written in words. If this check were for
$100, in the blank labeled "6" above, you would write, "One
Hundred and 00/100". Many people will then draw a line to
the preprinted "Dollars" to discourage alteration. If the
check were for $101.59, it would be written, "One Hundred One
7. The 'For" or "Memo" blank can be left blank, or you can enter
any information at all. Some people note an account number
or invoice number that is being paid with the check, others may
just write, "For Birthday" or other note to remind them what the
check was for. This field is not read by the bank and does
not change how the check is processed.
8. The signature line. This is where the account holder
would sign the check. On a check draft, the signature is
not required, although it is usual to have a signature
disclaimer in this section.
MICR field is the
Routing Number. This is the 9
digit code that routes the check to the issuing bank. The
routing number should match the bank name and the fraction code.
10. The account number. This field is an MICR field that
lists the account holder's account number at the bank.
11. Fraction Code - this field is the fraction that denotes the
routing for the check. The fraction code is another way to
write the 9 digit routing number. If the MICR line on the
check is mutilated, the fraction code will be used in its place.
12. The date field. Fill this in with the date the check
software will automatically ask the merchant for this
information and will automatically format the
check draft to
comply with all current banking regulations.
Checks by phone:
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