Demand draft

Demand draft
A demand draft

A demand draft, also known as a remotely created check, a tele-check, or check by phone, check by fax or echeck, is a check created by a merchant with a buyer's checking account number on it, but without the buyer's original signature.

Check drafting is creating a valid legal copy of the customer's check, on the customer's behalf. Because it is created by the merchant, no signature is required. Instead, a signature disclaimer or facsimile is entered in the signature blank.[1] A check draft is typically for deposit only.[2]

The Uniform Commercial Code permits the process of check drafting by defining signature in the following regulation: Uniform Commercial Code, Title 1, Section 1-201 (39).[3]

This regulation only makes check drafting possible, not "required." Your bank may deny your items for deposit if they have reason to be suspicious. Suspicious items are covered in Regulation CC 229.13, Exceptions.[4]

Authorization is indicated on a check draft in the signature blank, usually by a statement such as the following: "This draft is preauthorized by your depositor, no signature required.".

Demand drafts are frequently used to purchase items over the phone, from telemarketers. The checks also allow consumers to pay monthly bills by having them debited automatically out of their accounts, rather than having to write a new check each month.[5]

Unlike ACH transactions that are governed by NACHA regulations,[6] check drafting allows outbound telemarketers to accept these types of phone payments if they comply with the FTC Regulations 16 CFR 310 in regard to proper record keeping.[7]

Demand drafts are frequently used by consumers instead of credit cards, and large companies also commonly use them.[8]

Demand drafts are also a popular method for lending institutions to attempt to collect on overdue loans.[9]

Demand drafts entail a large potential for fraud. Banks report that demand draft fraud is becoming more common.[5] Under the current Federal Reserve Board guidelines the customer has a time frame of 90 days from the time the check was deposited to dispute the transactions. (

Demand draft fraud can be frustrating for consumers, because unlike credit card or ACH disputes, consumers are not often given any funds back until after investigation finds that the draft was unauthorized. In addition, filing a dispute frequently requires a notarized signature, since this is the only way one bank can dispute a paper item with another bank.

In 2005, the US Federal Reserve issued a regulation (effective July 1, 2006) shifting responsibility for payment of fraudulent demand drafts from the bank it is drawn on to the bank that accepts it as a deposit.[10]

Most recent developments in check drafting, which helps to facilitate checks by phone, checks by fax and online check payments is the new "Substitute Check Law" known as Check 21, enacted on October 28, 2004, which has greatly increased the use of check drafting.[11]

Other Items Considered Demand Drafts

Demand Drafts in India

In India, a Demand Draft is a cheque that contains an order of one branch of a bank ( Drawer branch ) directing another branch of the same bank ( Drawee branch ) to pay on demand a certain sum of money to a specified beneficiary ( Payee ) . It is an Account payee instrument, meaning it can only be credited to the account of the payee and cannot be encashed over the counter by the payee.

A Demand Draft is a much safer and certain method of payment than cheques, since in the case of cheques, an individual is the drawer and hence the cheque can be dishonoured by the drawee bank due to insufficiency of funds in the drawer's account. But since in the case of a DD, the drawer is a bank, payment is certain and it cannot be dishonoured.

Suppose a student wants to apply in a course in Delhi University. The university requires payment of the application fee to be done through a secure means, like a DD. In this case, the student would apply to his bank to get a DD issued favouring Delhi University. Suppose the student resides in Mumbai. Suppose he holds an account in a particular branch of SBI in Mumbai. In this case, this particular SBI branch in Mumbai would be the Drawer branch, a SBI branch located in Delhi ( typically the Service Branch ) would be the Drawee branch and Delhi University would be the payee.

Since it is a cheque issued by a bank ( that is, drawer is a bank ) it does not carry the signatures of the customer, unlike the case of ordinary cheques which carry the signature of the customer ( who is the drawer ). Instead, a DD carries signatures of one or two bank officials, depending on the DD amount. The name of the Drawee branch is mentioned on the bottom left hand corner while the name of the Issuing ( Drawer ) branch is mentioned on the top left corner.

Pay Orders, also called Local DDs or Bankers' cheques, are cheques where the drawer and the drawee branch is the same. These are used for local payments ( that is, payments within a city )

An applicant for a Demand Draft is required to fill in a DD Request Slip, mentioning the amount, payee's name, issuing branch, location the draft should be payable at, his name, signature and account number etc. In most cases, the purchaser of the draft is an account holder with the bank, hence he can authorise the bank to debit ( that is, take out funds from ) his account either through a Cheque or a debit mandate. The Cheque should be drawn in favour of " Yourself for the issue of DD favouring XYZ ", where XYZ refers to the payee of the DD.

The bank levies charges for the DD, in the form of a commission. Hence the customer has to pay an amount equal to ( DD amount + Commission + Service Tax ).

DDs can also be issued against the payment of cash by the purchaser, but in this case, the total amount ( inclusive of commission and taxes ) should not exceed Rs. 49,999.

Since a DD is kind of a cheque, the principle of Cheque Clearing also applies to DDs. In the example mentioned above, if the payee, Delhi University does not hold an account with SBI, but with another bank,say PNB, it would deposit the cheque in its PNB branch and the PNB officials would lodge the DD in outward clearing. ( The DD would be sent to the local Clearing House ).


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  5. ^ a b Shonk, Krista J. November 9, 2005. America's Community Bankers. Retrieved on July 11, 2007.
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  8. ^ Prepared statement of the Federal Trade Commission Presented by Jodie Bernstein before the House banking committee. April 15, 1996. Demand Draft Fraud. Retrieved on July 11, 2007.
  9. ^ Association for Financial Professionals. October 5, 2005. Thieves Exploit Demand Draft. Retrieved on July 11, 2007.
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