GBP Cheques -New Image Clearing System

UK clearing Banks recently rolled out a new image based cheque clearing system. The Image Clearing System speeds up GBP cheque processing for clearance and payment.
Please be aware that if, for whatever reason, the imaging clearing machine cannot read the cheque it will be rejected and returned as an unpaid.
The main reason the image machine rejects a cheque is because the print or writing on the cheque is too faint and lacks clarity.  UK clearing Banks’ criteria for processing a GBP cheque has to be adhered to if the cheque is to be processed for clearing.
See criteria below:
  • Cheques that are future dated, out of date (more than 6 months old) or where the words and figures do not match will be returned unpaid by the paying Bank.
  • Cheques that are not fully completed i.e. are missing a date, payee name, the amount in words, the amount in figures or missing a signature will be rejected.
  • Cheques that have been altered cannot be accepted, even if the alteration has been signed by the drawer. You will need to obtain a replacement cheque from the drawer.
  • All cheques must be written or printed in black ink:
  • Cheques written in red, green or blue ink will be rejected as poor image quality and you will need to obtain a replacement cheque
  • Cheques written with a pencil or marker will be rejected as poor image quality and you will also need to obtain a replacement cheque
  • All cheques must be of good visual quality and intact:
  • Cheques presented torn, damaged or creased or cheques faintly written or printed and lacking clarity or cheques that are illegible in any place will be rejected as poor image quality
POOR QUALITY IMAGE IS A VALID REASON FOR RETURNING A CHEQUE UNPAID.  THIS IS A UK BANK CLEARING RULE INTRODUCED DURING 2018.
If your GBP cheque is returned unpaid or is rejected during the imaging process, you will receive a copy of the cheque rather than the actual paper cheque itself.
A copy of the cheque is a legal instrument.