The parts of a check

Review the parts of a check.

A check that contains these areas: your name and address, the date, pay to the order of, numeric amount box, written amount line, bank name, “for” or memo, signature line, account number, and routing number.

Name and address
Your name and address are preprinted on the check for your convenience and tell the person or company to whom you’re giving the check — known as the payee — that you’re the one who wrote it.

This is where you write today’s date.

Pay to the order of
This is where you write the name of the person or company who will be receiving the money. If you’re making a withdrawal for yourself, you will write “Cash” here.

Numeric amount box
The amount of the check is written in this box.

Written amount
The amount in words is written on this line. You start at the left edge of the line and when you’re finished, you will draw a line through the remaining empty space as far as the word “Dollars.”

Bank name
The name of the bank that holds your account appears here.

“For” or memo
To remember what you bought, you can write a brief description in the “for” area — other banks may label this area “memo.”

Signature line
Your signature should be the last thing you complete. It gives the bank permission, or authorization, to release the money to the payee.

Check number
This is the check number. This reference number will help you keep track of your payments by check. Each time you write a check, you should record the check number, date, payee, and amount in your check register, and calculate your new balance.

Account number
This is the 10-digit account number that is unique to your account. This tells the bank which account the money comes from.

Routing number
This is the bank routing number. It identifies the bank that issued the check. You need this number to set up direct deposit at work. Direct deposit allows your employer to electronically deposit your paycheck directly into your account, without giving you a paper check.


  • Write in ink.
  • Write clearly.
  • Record every check in your register.

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