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Soiled and mutilated banknotes

What are soiled, mutilated and imperfect banknotes?

  • Soiled note means a note which, has become dirty due to usage and also includes a two piece note pasted together wherein both the pieces presented belong to the same note, and form the entire note with no essential feature missing.
  • Mutilated banknote is a banknote, of which a portion is missing or which is composed of more than two pieces.
  • Extremely brittle, burnt, charred, stuck up Notes Notes which have turned extremely brittle or are badly burnt, charred or inseparably stuck up together and, therefore, cannot withstand normal handling.

Where are soiled/mutilated banknotes accepted for exchange?

  • All banks are authorized to accept soiled banknotes for full value. These notes should be accepted over bank counters in payment of Government dues and for credit to accounts of the public maintained with banks. All branches of commercial banks are authorised to adjudicate mutilated banknotes and pay value for these, in terms of the Reserve Bank of India (Note Refund) Rules, 2009.

How much value would one get in exchange of soiled/mutilated bank notes?

Soiled bank notes and mutilated banknotes are exchanged for full value.

  • For denominations of less than Rs 50, the area of the single largest undivided piece of the note presented is more than 50 percent of the area of respective denomination, rounded off to the next complete square centimeter.
  • For denominations of Rs 50 and above, the area of the single largest undivided piece of the note presented is more than 80 percent of the area of respective denomination, rounded off to the next complete square centimeter. If the undivided area of the single largest undivided piece of the note presented is equal to or more than 40 percent and less than or equal to 80 percent of the area of the respective denomination rounded off to the next complete square centimeter, half the value of the note is payable.
  • A mutilated banknote in denominations of Rs 50 and above, can be exchanged for full value, if, denominations consist of a note composed of two pieces of the same note and the two pieces, individually have an area equal to or more than 40 percent of the total area of the note in that denomination.
  • Banknotes in denominations of Rs 1, Rs 2, Rs 5, Rs 10 and Rs 20, cannot be exchanged for half value.

What types of banknotes are not eligible for payment under the Note Refund Rules?

The following banknotes are not payable under the Reserve Bank of India (Note Refund) Rules 2009.

A banknote for which:

  • For denominations of less than Rs 50, if the area of the largest undivided piece of the note presented is less than or equal to 50 percent of the area of the note, the claim shall be rejected..
  • For denominations of Rs 50 and above, the area of the single largest undivided piece of the note is less than 40 percent, no value shall be payable.

A banknote which:

  • Cannot be identified with certainty as a genuine note for which the Bank is liable under the Act,
  • Has been made imperfect or mutilated, thereby causing the note to appear to be of a higher denomination, or has been deliberately cut, torn, defaced, altered or dealt with in any other manner, not necessarily by the claimants, enabling the use of the same for making of a false claim under these rules or otherwise to defraud the Bank or the public, carries any extrinsic words or visible representations intended to convey or capable of conveying any message of a political or religious character or furthering the interest of any person or entity,
  • The coins of 25 paise and below, issued from time to time, ceased to be legal tender for payments as well as account with effect from June 30, 2011 in terms of Gazette Notification No. 2529 dated December 20, 2010 issued by the Government of India.
  • Has been imported into India by the claimant from any place outside India in contravention of the provision of any law.

Process for exchange of soiled/ mutilated/ imperfect notes

Notes presented in small number: Where the number of notes presented by a person is up to 20 pieces with a maximum value of Rs.5000 per day, banks should exchange them over the counter, free of charge.

Notes presented in bulk: Where the number of notes presented by a person exceeds 20 pieces or Rs.5000 in value per day, banks may accept them, against receipt, for value to be credited later. Banks may levy service charges as permitted in Master Circular on Customer Service in Banks (DBR.No.Leg.BC.21/09.07.006/2015-16 dated July 1, 2015).

Source: RBI



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