Should you avoid writing the year as ’20’ on checks?

Kaitlyn Bowers, Video Director

It is common practice for most people to date a check or legal document in the MM/DD/YY format, omitting the first two digits of the year, but with the arrival of the new year, is it actually better to write out the full year?

Recently, social media has been abuzz with the warning that if you just write “20” as the year on a check or legal document, you could be opening yourself up to the possibility of fraud. These warnings cautioned that a simple “20” as the year could easily be changed to any other year that starts off with “20.”

In terms of bank checks, this tactic can be used to make an expired check usable again. As for legal documents, this could lead to the documents appearing to go into effect much earlier than they really did.

There are many critics who believe that this warning is useless, as there are many other ways a document can be made fraudulent that have nothing to do with the date. Regardless, it is better to be safe than sorry.

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