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How to Find a Bank Branch Number for Direct Deposits

Ruchi Gupta - Author
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Jun. 13 2022, Published 9:53 a.m. ET

If you’re setting up a direct deposit, there's a good chance you’ll need the bank branch number in addition to your personal bank account number. The numbers work together to ensure that your money ends up in the right place. You should know your bank account number, but you may need help finding the bank branch number.

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The branch number functions as an address for your bank. It shows the branch at which you opened your account or the home branch. The bank branch number can also be called the routing number or transit number.

Why do you need the bank transit number?

The banking system is always busy and things can go wrong when transferring or depositing funds if accounts aren’t properly identified. Banks started using routing numbers around 1911. They initially used the number to clear checks. In those days, check deposits were sent back to the bank at which they were first issued. The routing number helped ensure that checks were sent back to the right banks as part of check processing.

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banks routing numbers
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Now, the transit number supports many functions in the banking system beyond its original purpose. Apart from direct deposits, the routing number is also used for fund transfers and bill payments to help identify the correct bank to send the money to.

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There are thousands of banks out there and they process thousands of transactions every single day. Without the transit number, it would be a huge challenge for banks to route money to the right place. People trying to complete transactions would face problems such as transfer delays and payment cancellations. Therefore, you will need your bank branch number to complete many basic transactions.

Here's how to find a bank branch number.

For U.S. banks, the transit or branch number is a nine-digit figure. If you have personal checks, the bank branch number (routing number) should be listed at the bottom of each check along with your account number. If you can’t find it on the check, you may look at your bank statement or check your bank’s website.

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The routing number or bank branch number located on a check
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Where to find the routing number on the check

The bank transit number typically appears on the bottom left corner of the check. It often sits alongside your personal account number and the check number. If the numbers appear on the same line at the bottom of the check, the routing number usually comes first, followed by the account number immediately to the right.

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Where can you find the transit number without a check?

If the bank didn’t issue you with a checkbook, there are a number of ways you could find the bank branch number to help you complete a transaction that requires it. Check the bank statement report to see if the number is shown there. You can also check the bank’s website or call or visit the bank in person and ask for the routing number. They should provide it to you without questions.

Finally, make sure to double-check your entries to ensure that the bank branch number is correct to avoid problems like having money sent to the wrong account. If you made a wrong entry, contact your bank immediately to reverse the transaction and provide the correct routing number.

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