Overview of Cheque Bounce

When there are inadequate or no funds in the account, the cheque that has been issued is returned. It is termed as bounced cheque.

In India, cheque bouncing can be deemed illegal and constitute a criminal offense. The issuer may face penalties.

Circumstances of Cheque Bounce

Insufficient Account Balance:

This is one of the most common reasons for a cheque to bounce. When the drawer writes a cheque, they are essentially directing their bank to pay a certain amount to the payee from their account. If the account does not have sufficient funds to cover the cheque amount when it is presented to the bank, the cheque will bounce. The bank will return the cheque to the payee with a memo stating "insufficient funds."

Expired Validity of the Cheque:

A cheque has a limited validity period, usually three months from the date of issuance. If the payee presents the cheque to the bank after this validity period has expired, the cheque becomes invalid, and the bank will not honour it. The payee should ensure they present the cheque for payment within the specified validity period.

Overwriting on the Cheque:

Any alterations or overwriting on the cheque can lead to suspicion and rejection. If there are corrections, changes, or overwriting on crucial details like the payee's name, the cheque amount (in figures or words), or the date, the bank may consider the cheque as potentially fraudulent. Banks prefer clean and unaltered cheques.

Damaged Cheque:

If a cheque is physically damaged or disfigured in a way that essential details are not clearly visible, the bank may refuse to honour it. Stains, marks, or tears that obscure important information on the cheque can result in rejection. It's essential to keep cheques in good condition.

Signature Mismatch:

The signature on the cheque is compared with the specimen signature available with the bank. If the signature on the cheque does not match the authorized signature held by the bank, it raises suspicions of fraud or forgery. In such cases, the bank may reject the cheque.

Mismatch of Amounts or Digits:

Cheques require the amount to be written both in words and figures. If there is a discrepancy between the amount written in words and the amount in figures, it can lead to confusion and rejection. The two amounts should match precisely.

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