Money order

From Academic Kids

A money order is a check issued by an organization such as the Postal Service or sold by third parties such as grocery stores, convenience stores, or banks and other financial services companies, to allow individuals to make payments to each other or to pay bills such as utilities and rent.

A money order is purchased for the amount desired. In this way it is similar to a certified check. The main difference is that money orders are usually limited in face value to some specified figure (usually under $1,000) while certified checks are not. A money order is usually considered safer for payments from parties unknown to the payee, as opposed to a personal check drawn on the maker's bank account, since a money order is generally guaranteed cashable by the receiving party, unlike an ordinary check. In recent years, partly for this reason, and partly for convenience, money orders have also been much used as payment for goods bought over the Internet; such transactions more often take place between two private individuals than is the case for non-Internet transactions, which are most often between individuals on the one hand and commercial companies on the other.

Security features of U.S. Postal Money Orders

  • PMO's are generally regarded as one of the more difficult financial documents to counterfeit
  • Watermarks. Telltale watermark when held up to the light should reveal images of Benjamin Franklin, repeated on the left side (top to bottom)
  • Dark security strip running alongside the watermark (top to bottom), just to the right. If held to the light, a microfiber strip will show tiny letters "USPS" along its length, facing backward and forward.
  • Rainbow of inked patterns and tones.
  • PMO's are printed in crisp, clean, textured paper stock.
  • Maximum value of $1000 for domestic (US) postal money orders, and $700 for International Postal Money Orders.
  • Denominations appear in two locations. If the denomination amounts are discolored, that indicates that they have been erased.

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