Check Printing Requirements


You are about to buy a new supply of bank checks and wonder what information must be included on business and personal checks drawn on United States Banks. Regardless of the design or background artwork on your checks the information that is required on checks is the same for all banks.

Account holder name(s)

  • Your name and the name of any joint account holders, or the business name, must appear on the face of the check. This information is normally located in the upper left hand corner of the checks and is printed in all capital letters in bold-face type.

Address and phone number

  • Your current home or business address is printed directly below your name(s). The address must contain a street address, city, state and zip code. The type for the address will be smaller in size and will not be bold-faced. Most business establishments will not cash your check if it does not bear a telephone number.

Check and bank numbers

  • The individual check number and your home bank location code are printed in the upper right hand corner of the check. An example of the bank code number might look like this: 16-24/1220. The check number will be in bold-face type.

Date line

Pay to: line

  • A line must be printed with the notation “Pay to the order of” preceding the line. You will enter the name of the person or business to whom the check is written on this line.

Bank checks

  • The amount of the check is entered in two locations. At the end of the pay to line, the amount of the check is entered in numbers, for example, $125.50. A clarifying line of text just below the pay to line spells out the amount; for example, One hundred twenty-five and 50/100 dollars.

Issuing bank

Bank reconciliation and sorting line

  • The bottom line on your checks must contain the information used to mechanically sort checks for return to your bank. The numbers will contain the bank routing number, your individual account number and the check number. The printed numbers must be printed in a special ink designated MIRC, for magnetic ink character recognition. A distinctive text font makes the line readable by high volume sorting equipment.

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  • Photo Credit check book image by Rob Hill from address image by Aleksander from numbers image by Amer Delibasic from throw-over calendar image by Aleksandr Ugorenkov from check and pen in close up image by Alexey Klementiev from bank image by Pefkos from
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