To cut a check is to pay someone. Checks are used to conveniently conduct secure financial transactions, where the payer pays the payee. Checks also offer the convenience of tracking costs and expenses by dispersing the exact amount of money intended. Cutting checks adds speed and efficiency to the weekly task of paying employees and service providers.
Check writing was a long and arduous task for those who had to write hundreds of payroll checks each week. When employers needed large-scale check processing or if they decided to outsource their payroll tasks to their local banks, the checks were then printed and processed by machine.
To cut a check is to literally cut it away from the rest of the paper. It means that the amount of the check, the person's name, the proper signature and the current date will be printed on the check, then it is either cut or perforated for easy tearing. When a check is to be cut, the understanding is that the deal is done and the person will be paid soon after the check is ready.
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As far as the machinery, there are check writers that print the data onto the checks, and check signer and endorser machines that add the feature of engraving signatures or stamps onto the checks. Some models process individual check paper sheets, while other machines process a continuous feed of check paper that is then cut into separate checks.
Service companies are available to cut checks and vouchers for businesses. Their services allow the business to simply submit a spreadsheet or document detailing the names, amounts, dates of the checks and the required signature image. They then print and cut the checks, making them ready for easy distribution. Likewise, many businesses have a payroll department or an employee that manages payroll, and they can easily add the check processing machine to their office equipment.
Checks are still cut, even though there are the options of direct deposit into bank accounts, money exchange accounts, such as PayPal and deposits made to card balances. Check processing, however, is a direct note to the financial institution that the account exists in and to the money that is drawn upon. Checks in circulation include personal checks, business checks, bank checks, certified checks, cashiers checks, government checks, travelers checks, school/university checks and money orders. The issuing of any of these checks is to cut the checks.