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What to do with soiled, unfit peso bills and coins

by Leila Salaverria

ARE your peso bills and coins looking old and grubby and no longer fit for use? 

Don’t throw these away. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said unfit legal tender banknotes, whether made of paper or polymer, could still be deposited or replaced at the bank. 

The BSP also said business establishments are supposed to accept unfit legal tender banknotes during their everyday transactions. They could still have these deposited in the bank.

Banks must also accept mutilated banknotes. 

They should then deposit these legal tender bills to the BSP. 

If you happen to chance upon a BSP Piso Caravan booth in your area, you could also exchange your unfit banknotes for digital cash in these booths.

The BSP held a currency exchange program in Tagbilaran recently where it replaced unfit money by depositing the equivalent amount to clients’ e-wallets. 

The BSP’s Visayas Regional Office staff also helped those without e-wallets to set this up in their devices. 

How to tell if your money is unfit for use

You can tell if your bills should already be taken out of circulation if these have any of the following characteristics: 

  • Soilage or accumulated dirt or any substance across the surface that results in the discoloration or aging of the substrate
  • Obvious markings or writings
  • Limpness or rag like quality, meaning it cannot sustain an upright position when held on one of the shorter edges
  • Stains
  • Heavy folds or creases
  • Faded print

These unfit banknotes could be exchanged with the bank.

Mutilated banknotes

Mutilated banknotes, or those with tears, holes, or missing or damaged parts, should be submitted to the bank for analysis of the BSP. It would determine the redemption value of the bill. 

Banknotes are considered mutilated if these have any of the following:

  • Charred or decayed portions
  • Adhesives, staple wires, or any material not originally part of the note 
  • Tears, holes, or missing parts
  • The splitting of substrate or the separation of the front and back side of the note 

Mutilated notes could only be valid for redemption if:

  • The remaining surface area is no less than 3/5 of the original size of the banknote
  • A portion of any one of the signatures of the President of the Philippines or the Governor of the BSP remains 
  • The presence of the embedded security thread or windowed security thread remains, unless these were lost to or damaged due to fire, water, chemical, or bitten by termites, rodents, or the like. Notes whose security threads were willfully removed are no longer valid for redemption 

Unfit coins 

Coins showing any of the following characteristics are considered unfit and could be exchanged with the bank:

  • Signs of corrosion or darkened portions on the surface of the coin
  • Markings 
  • Mutilated coins 
  • Mutilated coins could still be redeemable if these are:
  • Burned
  • Corroded 
  • Have reduced Weight
  • Still identifiable

Mutilated coins are no longer be redeemable and have no value if these are: 

  • Perforated 
  • Filed 
  • Clipped 
  • Unidentifiable

Banner photo credit: BSP website



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