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What is MICR?


MICR is an acronym for Magnetic Ink Character Recognition. It describes the special typeface and ink used to encode the numbers and symbols printed on the bottom line of checks and other documents for high-speed magnetic or optical processing.

The United States and many other countries use the E-13B MICR font:

Another MICR font used by several countries in Europe and South America is CMC-7:


Why use MICR in Laser Check Printing?

Computer generating checks with laser printers offers many advantages for businesses that manage multiple bank accounts:

  • Avoids the expense and time delay of purchasing pre-encoded check stock.
  • Eliminates potential for waste when a bank account is changed or closed.
  • Increases security since only non-negotiable blank check paper is stored. 
  • Speeds check processing by reducing the need to change check stock for each account and by using high speed laser printers. 
  • Allows for easy incorporation of signatures and/or logos during check processing.
  • Permits checks to be printed at remote locations.

What Is MICR?