Primarily a negotiable instrument, a cheque instructs a bank or other financial institution to pay a specified amount of money of a particular currency to a particular person or institution. Legal entities or individual persons can serve as payees and makers. From 1600s to 1900s, different kinds of spellings were used to refer to this kind of negotiable instrument. The term ‘check’ is the common spelling in American English, while the word ‘cheque’ is used in Ireland. In addition to these interesting details, it is also good to know the dimensions of a cheque.
The Dimensions of a Cheque
The standard size of cheques is 46 centimeters by 91 centimeters or 18 inches by 36 inches. Based on the Guinness Book of World Records, the largest cheque ever made measured 12 meters by 25 meters or 39 feet by 82 feet. No matter how big or how small it is, the amount of money that can be redeemed depends on the value written on it. It is quite common for some banks to seek additional charges for oversized cheques.
Additional Facts and Other Interesting Details
A cheque is comprised of various elements including the date of issue, the cheque number and the place of issue. Aside from this, it also contains the signature of the drawer, the amount of currency as well as the payee. A routing transit number is also included. In the United States, this element is made up of nine digits. The first four digits are part of the cheque-processing center of the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank.
In the United States, the Uniform Commercial Code states the rules governing the use of the three different types of cheques, namely the counter-cheque, the bearer cheque and the order cheque. Alternatives to cheques include direct credit, direct debit and wire transfer. In addition to these, it is also possible to use a postal payment, a third-party online payment service and an online card payment.
Cheques are susceptible to different kinds of fraud, one of which is identity theft. Every cheque is made up of different kinds of personal details such as the signature, account number and name. Other cheques contain even the phone number, address as well as the driver’s license number.
It is possible for a cheque to be dishonored. In case this happens, it will become worthless. This kind of cheque is called NSF, which stands for non-sufficient funds. In other times, it is referred to as a returned deposit item or simply RDI. In Wales and England, a dishonored cheque is marked with the statement ‘Refer to Drawer.’