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Deposit Visual Reference Guide

Introduction

This guide is a supplement to the Cash Services Manual of Procedures (PDF) (CSMOP) and is not all inclusive of the requirements. If a deposit does not comply with these guidelines, it may be rejected by the servicing Federal Reserve Bank and returned to the depositor at their expense, or differences associated with these errors may be charged to the depositor.

The Deposit Visual Reference Guide is also available in a printable format (PDF).

Revised 1/30/2017 to reflect updates to the contaminated currency section

Currency

Currency within a Strap

All Notes:

What to do

  • All notes in a deposit must be clearly more than 50% of a note to receive credit.
  • Unfit currency, currency that is not suitable for further circulation due to its physical condition (torn, dirty, limp, worn or defaced), should be included in your regular deposit(s).
  • Notes should be straightened, and all corners and edges should be aligned.

Denomination $1-$20

  • Notes within the strap may be packaged without regard to direction or facing.
CORRECT—For denominations $1-$20, notes within a strap can be arranged without regard to facing or direction
CORRECT—Notes within a strap can be arranged without regard to facing or direction.

Denomination $50-$100

  • Notes must face portrait side up.
  • The face-forward orientation of the portrait may be right-side up or upside-down.
CORRECT—For denominations $50-$100, notes within a strap must face portrait side up, but can be in one direction or in mixed directions.
CORRECT—Notes within a strap must face portrait side up, but can be in one direction or in mixed directions.
CORRECT—For denominations $50-$100, notes within a strap must face portrait side up, but can be in one direction or in mixed directions.
CORRECT—Notes within a strap must face portrait side up, but can be in one direction or in mixed directions.
Incorrect - All notes within the strap are not facing portrait side up, which is incorrect for denominations $50-$100.
INCORRECT— All notes within the strap are not facing portrait side up, which is incorrect.

Straps

What to do

  • A strap is a package of 100 notes.
  • All straps must contain 100 notes of the same denomination and must have only one band around them.
  • Include only U.S. currency. Under no circumstances should coin or other valuables be included.
  • All paper clips, staples and/or rubber bands must be removed.
"
Yes
CORRECT—This strap is properly and neatly assembled and includes the teller’s name or initials and date of verification.

What NOT to do

  • Sub-straps, which are a strap of 100 notes subdivided by multiple straps, are not permitted.
  • Currency identified as mutilated or contaminated must NOT be included in same straps with fit currency (refer to Cash Services Manual of Procedures (PDF) for instructions on sending mutilated currency to the Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) and depositing contaminated currency with the Federal Reserve).
No
INCORRECT—This strap contains sub-straps, rubber bands and paper clips.

Bands

What to do

  • A band is a strip of paper material used to bind or hold together a strap.
  • Each strap must be bound by only one band.
  • Bands must be color-coded (along the edges) to conform to existing standards of the American Bankers Association ("ABA").
  • Band material must be between 1.00 to 1.57 inches wide with an approximate weight of 100 g/sqm, made of paper and not synthetic materials.
  • Bands should indicate the dollar amount of currency in the strap, the date of verification and the initials or names of the persons who verified the strap.
  • The length of the band must be such that the band wraps the strap once with minimal overlap, so no loose flaps are remaining beyond the adhesive. Loose flaps cause processing machine jams.
  • For correct placement of bank stamps, refer to section “Stamps” below.
Yes
CORRECT—The strap has a single band of proper color-coding and material, and includes the teller’s name or initials and date of verification. In addition, the band has no excess flap.
No
CORRECT—This band has no excess flap.

What NOT to do

  • Do not use bands with loose flaps to help avoid processing machine jams.
  • Do not use brown paper bands, that is, those bands made of recycled stock paper, as they do not image well. We strongly encourage the use of white paper bands to ensure information is clearly captured when imaged.
No
INCORRECT—Do not use bands with loose flaps to help avoid processing machine jams.

Stamps

What to do

  • Each band must be stamped with the following information:
    • Institution's name;
    • ABA routing number; and
    • Four-digit endpoint number (branch number) of the depositing office (a band without an office identification number is deemed to be from the institution’s head office).
  • Use black ink on the stamp to help ensure good quality images.
  • Use large and easy-to-read font on your stamp and
  • Refresh ink pads frequently.

All Notes

Yes
CORRECT—The stamp is in black ink, shows the required deposit information, and includes the teller’s name or initials and date of verification.
No
INCORRECT—The stamp shows the use of red ink.
No
INCORRECT—The stamp shows a blurred stamp that is unreadable.

What to do

Denomination $1-$20

  • The bank stamp on the band must be placed on either side of the strap, without regard to the portrait; however, straps within the bundle must be arranged such that all bank stamps face the same direction. (See pictures in section “Straps within a Bundle.”)
Yes
CORRECT—The bank stamp is placed on either side of the strap without regard to facing.

Denomination $50-$100

  • The bank stamp must be placed on the back outside of the band, not the portrait side.
Yes
CORRECT—The stamp is placed on the back outside the band, not the portrait side.
No
INCORRECT—The stamp is on the portrait side of the band.

Bundles

What to do

All Notes

  • A bundle consists of 1,000 notes of the same denomination in ten equal straps of 100 notes each.
  • Straps must be bound together, for example with two tight-fitting rubber bands.

Denomination $1-$20

  • Deposit(s) must contain full bundles.

Denomination $50-$100

  • Deposit(s) must be in full straps or full bundles.
Yes
CORRECT—The bundle is properly and neatly prepared.

What NOT to do

All Notes

  • The bundle must not contain mixed denominations.
  • Rubber bands used to hold the straps together should not be so tight as to cause damage to the notes.
  • Use zip-ties or Tyvek to secure bundles of currency.
Yes
INCORRECT—The bundle includes multiple rubber bands and straps.
No
INCORRECT—The straps are bundled so tightly it is causing damage to the notes.

Straps within a Bundle

What to do

Denomination $1-$20

  • Straps within the bundle must be arranged such that all bank stamps face the same direction.
Yes
CORRECT—All the stamps in the bundle face in the same direction.
No
INCORRECT—The stamps in the bundle face in multiple directions.

What to do

Denomination $50-$100

  • The bank stamp must be placed on the back outside of the band, not the portrait side.
  • Straps within the bundle must be arranged such that all bank stamps face the same direction.
Yes
CORRECT—The straps are arranged with all bank stamps in the same direction, with stamps on the back outside of the straps.
No
INCORRECT—The bank stamps are on the portrait (wrong) side of the straps even though the straps are all arranged in the same direction.

Currency Bags/Containers

What to do

  • Only clear plastic bags or clear plastic/metal containers may be used for deposits.
  • Plastic bags must be at least 5 mils thick or the equivalent in strength and durability.
  • The bags/containers of deposits must be securely sealed with a tamper-evident seal, so that any unauthorized access is easily detected, and the bags must be free of holes and tears.
  • The bags/containers must bear the institution’s identification (logo and/or name).
  • If using plastic seals, each bag should have a bag tag attached to the seal or within a compartment of the bag separate from the currency.
  • The tag must indicate ABA number, bank/branch name and dollar amount of the contents on each bag.
  • The tag should indicate the bag number (e.g. “Bag___of____”).
  • If using a large-capacity currency bag for a small deposit, please be sure to cinch or seal the bag in such a way to prevent tearing of the straps or breaking the bundles in transit.
  • Containers must be secured with tamper-evident seals that have unique seal numbers; the seal numbers must be provided to your servicing Federal Reserve Bank, see CSMOP Section 4.1.

Your servicing Federal Reserve Bank requires you to include a deposit document or ticket with your deposit. Consult with your servicing Federal Reserve Bank for specific policies and procedures.

Yes
CORRECT—The currency bag is properly labeled with a typed or handwritten institution’s identification and deposit information.
Yes
CORRECT—The currency bag is secure with a tamper-evident plastic seal, and the tag is attached to the seal. In addition, the currency bag is properly and tightly cinched based on the size of the deposit.
Yes
CORRECT— The deposit is properly prepared and placed in a container and is securely sealed for delivery.
Yes
CORRECT— The deposit is properly prepared and placed in a container and is securely sealed for delivery.

What NOT to do

  • A full bag must not contain more than 16 bundles of currency.
  • The bag tag should not be placed inside the bag.

Your servicing Federal Reserve Bank requires you to include a deposit document or ticket with your deposit. Consult with your servicing Federal Reserve Bank for specific policies and procedures.

No

INCORRECT
—The currency bag contains loose notes/straps, or a small deposit is placed in a large bag with the tag inside the bag.
No
INCORRECT—The currency bag contains loose notes/straps, or a small deposit is placed in a large bag with the tag inside the bag.
No
INCORRECT—Small deposits are placed in large bags that are not cinched properly, and the tag is placed inside the bag.

Contaminated Currency

Contaminated currency is currency that has been damaged by or exposed to contaminants, poses a health hazard or safety risk, and cannot be processed under normal operating procedures.

Institutions should obtain as much information as possible from their customer regarding the type and extent of the contamination before contacting the servicing Federal Reserve Bank to deposit contaminated currency.

Note: Currency which has been damaged to the extent that its value is questionable is not handled by the Federal Reserve Bank. These notes, which are commonly referred to as mutilated currency, should be sent to the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Mutilated Currency Division, Office of Financial Management for validation and redemption

What to do

  • Separate contaminated currency from normal deposits.
  • If contaminated notes are old U.S. currencies or high denomination notes ($500 and above), they must be packaged separately.1
  • Contaminated currency must be prepared by denomination, in straps of 100 notes and in bundles of 10 straps.
  • Rubber bands must be used to secure multiple full straps and, contrary to normal deposit procedures, should be securely placed around the middle of the bundle.

1All large size currencies; National Bank notes, small size; Federal Reserve Bank notes, small size; and Gold certificates, small size, series 1928 only.

Yes
CORRECT—The contaminated deposit is separated from a normal deposit, properly double bagged and is marked with the word “contaminated” on the outer bag. The straps are secured with rubber bands placed around the middle of the bundles.

What is considered contaminated currency?

Currency may become contaminated due to:

  • Prolonged exposure to water or other liquids that results in the existence of mold. (Note: Wet currency that does not show signs of mold is not considered contaminated and should be dried and deposited under the normal process.)
  • Exposure to blood, urine, feces, or any other bodily fluids, including removal from any body cavity, corpse, or animal.
  • Exposure to sewage.
  • Exposure to any chemical, liquid, or foreign substance that may pose a health hazard or safety risk.
  • Exposure to tear gas used in most dye packs. (Note: The dye used in dye packs is not considered a contaminant. Notes stained from the dye alone should be deposited normally.)

What to do

  • Partial straps of 50 notes or less of a single denomination must be fanned in a way that allows for more than 50 percent of each note to be clearly visible through all of the packaging material. Staples should be used to secure the fan before the notes are placed into the bag.
  • Partial straps containing between 51 and 99 notes of a single denomination must be wrapped with a paper band. The band must be marked with the piece count and dollar amount.
  • Contaminated currency must be double- bagged, and the bags must be large enough to permit movement of the currency inside the bags for initial visual inspection.
    • The inner bag must be a strong, tamper-evident, clear plastic currency bag purchased by your institution for depositing with the Federal Reserve. Do not use store-bought Ziploc style bags for the inner bag.
    • The outer bag must also be a strong, tamper-evident, clear plastic currency bag used by your institution for depositing with the Federal Reserve.
  • The word “CONTAMINATED” must be written in permanent marker and large letters on the outside of the outer bag. Any exterior printing on the bags must not inhibit the view of the bagged contents.
  • Provide advance written notification to your servicing Federal Reserve Bank by completing the FedCash Services Contaminated Currency form and sending it via email or fax to the Federal Reserve Bank prior to sending contaminated currency to the cash dock. Be sure to provide as much information as possible regarding the type and extent of the contamination.
  • Complete a separate Federal Reserve Bank deposit document or electronic deposit notification form that includes the denominational breakdown and total of the contaminated currency. The ticket should accompany the deposit.
Yes
CORRECT—Partial straps of 50 notes or less of a single denomination are stapled in a fan shape in such a way that each note can be clearly denominated and piece counted.
No
INCORRECT— The notes are not fanned in a way that allows for more than 50 percent of each note to be clearly visible.
Yes
CORRECT—Partial straps of 51 – 99 notes of a single denomination are wrapped with a paper band and marked with the piece count and total dollar amount.
Yes
CORRECT—Partial straps of 50 notes or less of a single denomination are stapled in a linear fashion where each note can be clearly denominated and piece counted.

What NOT to do

  • Do not include any extraneous items inside or between the inner and outer bags. Extraneous items include paper clips, deposit documents, bag tags, or dye pack mechanisms. The presence of extraneous items will result in your deposit being returned.
  • Double-bagging must not inhibit the view of the bagged contents.
  • If proper advance notification of a contaminated currency deposit does not occur, or if proper packaging requirements are not met, the Federal Reserve Banks reserve the right to return the deposit to the institution. For more information, contact your local Cash office.

Review the Contaminated Currency and Coin Policy for complete details and a video on handling contaminated currency and coin.

No
INCORRECT—The contaminated deposit is not double bagged in a manner that the contents of the bag are visible.
No
INCORRECT—In the image on the left, the contaminated deposit is not double bagged or marked with the word “contaminated.” In the image on the right, the contaminated deposit is not double bagged in a manner that the contents of the bag are visible.
No
No
INCORRECT—The bundles are not double bagged in bags large enough to permit movement of the currency inside for initial visual inspection.

Mutilated Currency

The Federal Reserve DOES NOT accept deposits of mutilated currency.

What to do

  • Mutilated currency is currency that has been damaged to the extent that one-half or less of the note remains, or its condition is such that its value is questionable and special examination by trained experts at the Department of the Treasury or the (BEP) (Off-site) is required before any exchange is made.
  • Burnt currency that is clearly less than one-half a complete note and cannot be handled without compromising its integrity is considered mutilated currency.
  • Mutilated currency must be sent directly to the BEP’s Mutilated Currency Division with a letter stating the estimated value of the currency and an explanation of how the currency became mutilated.

What NOT to do

Unfit contaminated, but not mutilated, currency should not be sent to the BEP’s Mutilated Currency Division. The Federal Reserve processes this currency; however, currency that is both contaminated and mutilated should be sent to the BEP’s Mutilated Currency Division.

  • Currency that is clearly more than one-half, but less than a complete note, heavily soiled, limp, worn or torn, is not considered mutilated, and should be included in a normal deposit.
  • Do not send suspect counterfeit currency to the BEP’s Mutilated Currency Division as a mutilated claim. For more information on counterfeit currency, visit Handling Counterfeit Currency.

You may call the BEP's toll-free number, (866) 575-2361, or visit the BEP website (Off-site) to obtain more information on shipping instructions for mutilated currency, and to see photographic examples of mutilated currency.

buried currency
EXAMPLE — This example shows buried currency.
burnt currency
EXAMPLE — This example shows burnt currency.
liquid damage currency
EXAMPLE —This example shows liquid damaged currency.

Coin

Coin Deposits

What to do

  • When preparing a coin deposit, make sure to piece count and verify the coin and not mix coin of different denominations in the same bag. Bags found to have mixed denominations may be rejected by the servicing Federal Reserve Bank and returned to the institution at their expense, or differences associated with these errors may be charged to the institution.
  • Susan B. Anthony, Native American and Presidential dollar coins may be bagged together, but they must be bagged separately from Eisenhower dollars.
  • Sack loose coin by denomination in plastic or canvas bags.
Yes
CORRECT—The currency bag is correctly secured with a tamper-evident plastic seal and a correct color-coded tag, based on denomination, containing institution identification.
Yes
CORRECT—The tamper-evident plastic bag is correctly labeled with the institution identification based on the denomination, with the dollar amount.

What NOT to do

  • If using canvas bags with a tamper-evident plastic/string tie and lead seals, attach the tags, showing the denomination, dollar amount, institution’s name and four-digit endpoint number to the seal; do not place the tag inside the bag.
  • Deposits of boxed or wrapped coin are not accepted.
  • If using plastic bags, each bag must be tamper-evident and have a label on the opposite side of the handle showing denomination, dollar amount, institution’s name and ABA with four-digit endpoint number.

Your servicing Federal Reserve Bank may require you to include a deposit document or ticket with your deposit. Consult with your servicing Federal Reserve Bank for specific policies and procedures.

No
INCORRECT—The canvas bag is incorrectly sealed with a non-tamper evident seal, and the seal was applied loosely. The bag also doesn’t contain a tag.
No
INCORRECT—Different denominations of coin cannot be mixed in the same bag. For one dollar coins, Eisenhower dollars must be separated from all other dollar coins.
No
INCORRECT—Different denominations of coin cannot be mixed in the same bag. For one dollar coins, Eisenhower dollars must be separated from all other dollar coins.
No
INCORRECT—Rolled coin and boxed coin cannot be deposited.

Plastic Coin Bags

What to do

  • Coin deposits may be made in either traditional standard canvas bags with tamper-evident seals or tamper- evident clear plastic bags.
  • Clear plastic bags must meet the following requirements:
    • Must possess a tamper-evident seal;
    • Reinforced handle able to withstand hang test with +100 lb. load or the equivalent in strength and durability;
    • Material must be 6.5-mil gauge or the equivalent in strength and durability;
    • Size must approximate that of a standard canvas bag;
    • Contents must be clearly visible through the packaging material; and

Each bag must have a label on the opposite side of the handle showing the denomination, dollar amount, institution’s name and ABA routing number (with four-digit branch code).

Yes
CORRECT—The plastic bags are stacked on the pallet with all labels facing out.
No
INCORRECT—The plastic bags are stacked on the pallet with all labels facing inward.

Canvas Coin Bags

What to do

  • Canvas bags must meet the following requirements:
    • Each canvas bag must have a color-coded tag, in accordance with the ABA standards based on denomination;
    • The tag must contain the denomination, dollar amount, institution’s name and ABA routing number with four-digit branch identifier; and
    • A tamper-evident seal with the institution’s identification must be used.
Yes
CORRECT—The canvas bags are stacked on the pallet with all labels facing out.

What NOT to do

  • Bags should not be torn or damaged.
  • If depositing in pallets, bags should be neatly stacked.
No
INCORRECT—The canvas bags are stacked on the pallet with all labels facing inward and some bags show evidence of holes and tears.

Bent or Partial Coin

The Federal Reserve DOES NOT accept deposits of bent or partial coin.

What NOT to do

  • Bent or partial coin is not redeemable at face value; it is redeemable only at its bullion (metal) value as established by the Director of the U.S. Mint.
mutilated coin
EXAMPLE —This example shows bent or partial coin.
mutilated coin
EXAMPLE —This example shows bent or partial coin.

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