PCHC Advisory on Implementation of New Check Designs and Specifications
The Philippine Clearing House Corporation (PCHC) has moved the implementation of New Check Design from May 02, 2023 to May 01, 2024. This is to allow more time for bank clients to exhaust remaining checks or base stocks of printed checks in their possession.
To recall PCHC’s first Circular on the new Check Design Standards issued on February 11,2019 (CICS Operating Memo No. 19-030), the changes introduced are as follows:
- Standard Issue Date Format adopted is MM-DD-YYYY
- Date Format guide is indicated below the date line
- Individual box is provided for each character of the Issue Date
- Peso Sign is moved out of the box (Amount in Figures)
- Boxed white spaces for writing the date of issue, amount in figures, and signature of Issuer /Drawer (as illustrated in the picture below)
New Check Design as Amended
The foregoing changes are intended to:
- set a standard or uniform format of writing the date on checks in order to avoid misinterpretation of date of issue; and
- enhance check processing capabilities by providing banks better optical character recognition features that are needed for an automated check verification system
Furthermore, please be informed that:
- old format checks (i.e., without boxes) with date of issue written in alphanumeric are acceptable for clearing provided they are dated April 30, 2024 or earlier and they are presented for deposit prior to the 180th day from issue date;
- the issue date in alphanumeric on old format checks may be written in any sequence, i.e., Month-Day-Year or Day-Month-Year or Year-Month-Day. However, alphanumeric Month-Day-Year sequence is preferable for consistency with the MM-DD-YYYY sequence prescribed for issue date in numeric format.”
- notwithstanding the deferment, nonetheless, the date of issue on checks that are in the “new format” (i.e., with boxed spaces) has to be written now in numeric format and strictly in the MM-DD-YYYY or MM/DD/YYYY sequence.
- Clearing banks/participants are likewise enjoined to again remind their respective clients about the new Check design standards and the purpose of the changes being implemented.
- This Operating Memo is effective immediately and supersedes OM No. 21-036 issued April 16, 2021.
All non-compliant checks that don’t fall within the conditions mentioned above when presented for clearing will not be accepted and shall be returned by the Drawee Bank to the Presenting Banks using the reason: Refer to Issuer: Old Format Check.
We’re counting on the cooperation of everyone on this matter. Read the full memorandum here: CICS OM No. 23-040.