In the News: “Cheque Imaging”
“Cheque Imaging” is a system which allows individuals to pay in cheques using their smartphone or tablet rather than visiting the bank and this system in moving closer to becoming a reality. To use “cheque imaging” you just need to take a photo of the cheque and send it electronically meaning that, along with most other banking services now, you can update your finances from your armchair!
The idea has been around for a while now, similar technology is being used in USA, France and parts of Asia, but it has now been decided that this method of paying in cheques will be included in new legislation in the UK. This follows a pilot of the system run by Barclays who found that the system is helpful to all ages, the youngest person to use it is 17 and the oldest is 67! Barclays have said that an estimated £300 million in cheques is not paid in each year, hopefully “cheque imaging” will reduce this figure!
What are Cheques?
A cheque is a document which asks for a payment from a particular bank account. The person who is paying using a cheque fills in details such as recipient’s name and the amount to be paid, they then sign it.
The use of cheques was started so that people could make large payments to people without having to carry around the cash. Nearly £840 billion was paid using cheques in 2012 which equates to 10% of all payments that year!
It was announced that plans were being made for cheques to be taken out of use in 2018 but MPs, small businesses, charities and pensioner lobby groups made complaints against the decision as it would affect millions of people who still use cheques frequently.
“Cheque Imaging”: What it Means for You
You will still be able to pay in your cheques through the bank, post office, cash machines or by post when “cheque imaging” is introduced, it will just give you another option. The new system will be very secure and cheques sent using it will clear in two days rather than 6 as currently paper cheques are sent around the country for clearance from both the paying, and receiving, banks before they can be accepted.
The launch date for “cheque imaging” has not been decided yet.
By Sasha Davison
26th June 2014
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