Do You Have Damaged Banknotes? Here’s What You Can Do With Them

Do You Have Damaged Banknotes? Here’s What You Can Do With Them

Last week, a Facebook post went viral after showing the state of a grandmother’s savings that was eaten by termites.

In the post, Khairul Azhar said that the money was carefully and meticulously accumulated by his grandmother in Kelantan as her savings to perform the Hajj. He also said that although some of it was handed over to Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), the rest was unsalvageable.

So this raises the question, what can you do with damaged banknotes? Is it really unsalvageable or is there any way you can save your hard earned money?

The good news is that there is a way to salvage the money. The bad news however is that there are some conditions attached to it.

You can salvage damaged banknotes, but..

According to Bank Negara’s (BNM) website, you should seek to exchange your banknote if it’s no longer fit for recirculation.

But how do you know when your banknote is no longer fit for recirculating? Here are the criterias that makes a banknote fit for recirculation;

  • Genuine and not counterfeit
  • Free from holes, tears, tape or missing portion
  • Has uniform brightness and is free from excessive soiling
  • Free from ink-wear, particularly on the portrait of SPB Yang di-Pertuan Agong
  • Free from defacement

So if any of your banknotes do not fit all these criteria, then you should seek to exchange the money with BNM. Here are a few examples of banknotes that are no longer fit for recirculation as provided by BNM.

1. Notes that are too crumpled or have excessive shrinkage due to heat exposure.

damaged RM notes 1

2. Notes that are partially burnt or eaten away by termites.

damaged bank notes 2

3. Notes that have tears, hole punctures and notes that are made up of composites of different notes.

damaged bank notes 3

damaged bank note 4

4. Notes that have scribbles, writing or show signs of faded ink.

damaged bank notes 5

Can you replace or exchange damaged Ringgit notes?

But what if your notes are damaged? If your banknotes are damaged, you can also exchange them with BNM, but with a catch.

The level of damage or defacement should be within BNM’s acceptable level to be replaced with the full value of the banknote.

For notes that are damaged beyond the acceptable level however, here’s what BNM’s Guidelines On Quality Standards Of Malaysian Currency have to say about it;

Defaced Banknote

A banknote containing words, signs, symbols, drawings and caricatures which are either written or inscribed on its surface deliberately.

  • Full value shall be awarded to any piece of banknote which has minor defacing
  • No value shall be awarded to any piece of banknote which is defaced in any significant way (that is, markings done on the portrait of the Seri Paduka Baginda Yang di-Pertuan Agong, writings depicting political slogan and religious element or using the banknote as an invitation card/writing pad)

Mutilated Banknote

Value shall be given to any torn, burnt and termite infested banknotes subject to the following conditions:

  • Full value shall be awarded to any piece of banknote which is more than two-thirds (2/3) in size of the original banknote
  • Half value shall be awarded to any piece of banknote which is more than half (1/2) but less than two-thirds (2/3) in size of the original banknote
  • No value shall be awarded to any piece of banknote which is less than half (1/2) in size of the original banknote

Take better care of your banknotes

So now you know that although you can exchange your damaged banknotes with BNM, it is not without any questions asked, as your damaged banknote has to fulfill a specific criteria for you to get full value replacement.

Which means that you should take care of your banknotes, and never keep sizable amounts of money in your house.

You can easily keep your cash safely by opening a savings account. Compare and find the best savings accounts that suits your needs with iMoney.

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