MICR stands for Magnetic Ink Character Recognition, a system used by the banking industry to secure the integrity of printed checks. It is standard for all banks to find a series of numbers and symbols that has magnetic properties. MICR printers and toners make such verification possible.
MICR toners are magnetically charged. This special property allows check scanners from banks and other financial institutions to give a magnetic charge to the MICR printed numbers and view the line in three hundredths of a second. A normal check can be scanned by as many as seven times during the whole process by these institutions. Thus, the MICR printed texts are checked for integrity and accuracy.
The quality of MICR toners is important in printing checks. A low quality MICR toner may not provide the amount of magnetic charge required for bank scanners to read them. If that happens, the code that identifies the check is inputted manually, which is a time consuming and costly process. Imagine having a bunch of your checks being manually inputted by your bank. If this happens you might pay as much as three dollars per check to get them processed. And if you don't correct the problem, your bank might reject the checks altogether. Thus, a quality MICR toner will save you the hassle of dealing erroneously with the bank on such a simple matter.
MICR toners are not as common as the regular printer ink since it is produced under higher standards and quality checking. Even with thousands of printers on the market, MICR is not a mainstream product. Thus, only certain printer brands and models are compatible with MICR ink. If you are a small business who needs an office printer that will print MICR lines, your best bet is to go for HP. However, printer ink manufacturers like Versaink have translated the technology to a wider range of printer ink brands and models. Today, it is easy to find MICR toners for Canon Pixma, Epson Stylus, Lexmark, Xerox, and other brands.
There are special MICR fonts that will make printing checks possible. These set of MICR fonts should meet the ANSI and ABA banking standards. Anyone who works with a printer knows that the font shown in computers may display differently on paper. A small discrepancy in printing may render the MICR prints invalid. Make sure that the MICR fonts meet the ANSI and ABA standards and that your printer is properly adjusted.
Checks should be printed in special safety papers that pass industry standards. This ensures that the MICR prints stick all throughout the scanning process. There are some online stores that will guarantee the quality of their safety papers. It is best to coordinate with your bank regarding their guidelines on MICR printed checks. In the end, your bank will be processing them so you must ensure that your MICR checks work. While you can reap enormous saving with replacement inks, make sure that you buy from a reliable company only.
This Article is written by John C Arkin.
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