Pay a fine for scratching off error on cheque

Mumbai: If you have written hundered instead of hundred on a
cheque, dont just strike off the additional e and issue the cheque.
Use a fresh leaf instead, or it could cost you Rs100-550.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has notified banks in a recent circular
to not accept cheques that have corrections or alterations in anything
but the date. The measure has been taken to help banks identify and
control fraudulent alterations. The banks have started informing
customers about the policy change through mailers.

If you issue a cheque with corrections, you will be slapped with cheque
return charges that are Rs 100-250 for public sector banks and Rs350-550
for private banks.

It is consumer protection that the RBI is looking at. Many a times
cheques are stolen and encashed by other parties by making corrections,
said S Govindan, general manager (personal banking and operations),
Union Bank of India.

He said the move is essential keeping in view the changes in the way
cheques are dealt with now. Earlier, banks used to tell people not to
issue a bearer cheque and about some basic precautions. But now cheques
get couriered. Also, they are deposited in drop boxes. So the
possibility of them falling into the wrong hands is high.

The RBI also wants to reduce and, if possible, eliminate transactions
through cheques. Now that daily interest rate calculation has come in,
it works in your favour to keep money in your account for as long as
possible. At least three days are wasted in the issuance of a cheque.
Whereas netbanking is instant, said a banker.

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