A new image based system is being rolled out in phases across the banking industry, meaning that you will soon be able to clear a cheque by the next working day.


Paper cheques have to be taken from bank to bank and can take up to 6 working days to clear.

The whole cheque clearing system becomes even more complicated if the cheque turns out to be stolen. If you accept such a cheque in good faith, the money may initially clear, but it could subsequently bounce days or weeks later.  In this case you would lose out.


Under the new process, your bank will instead send an image of the cheque securely and some also plan to let you pay in a cheque by sending a picture rather than going to a branch.

The new system means that if you pay a cheque in on a working day (Monday to Friday), you will be able to withdraw the funds by 11.59pm the next day at the latest (excluding weekends and Bank Holidays).

The system is being rolled out in phases and even Banks that are starting to implement the new system will only use it on a small number of cheques to begin with.

Due to this, you probably won’t notice any difference in the speed of cheque processing for now, but by next summer 2018 all UK banks and building societies will have to be using the system.

This will finally replace what is now seen as an antiquated cheque clearing system that has been in place since around 1770.


It Is difficult not to conclude that most people will be better off accepting money electronically due to the risks involved in accepting cheques that may be stolen with the inherent risk of it bouncing, and cheques should be the payment method of last resort.

It should cut down on bank scams and fraud, which can only be a good thing.

Have you used this new cheque clearing system? Have you had any problems with it?

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