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Presumably counterfeit banknotes and coins

General information

It is important to verify the authenticity of the banknote by examining the security features. If after having evaluated the banknote, you are not sure about its authenticity, you can go to any bank and request that bank personnel evaluate it.

If the cashier determines that the banknote is presumably counterfeit, based on articles 19 and 20 of Mexico's monetary law, the following actions will be taken:

  • The cashier will retain the banknote to prevent its circulation. It is important to mention that no one is allowed to destroy, perforate or put a mark on a banknote because it is presumably counterfeit. The only entity allowed to issue a definitive decision on authenticity is Banco de México. However, as far as national banknotes are concerned, they might be sealed by the cashier in front of the customer. Such seal must fulfill the conditions established by Banco de México(*).
  • The cashier will give you a receipt(*) on which data on the banknote should be recorded (denomination, folio number, series, and date of issuance), as well as information on the person handing it in (name, address, telephone number), in order to notify him or her of the result of the evaluation.
  • The cashier will send the banknote to Banco de México for an evaluation.

Banco de México will deliver the results in writing to the bank that retained the banknote, with two possibilities:

  • If the banknote is authentic, its corresponding value will be reimbursed through that institution.
  • If the banknote is counterfeit or has been altered, it will remain in the custody of Banco de México, and you will not recover its value, because the note is actually a piece of paper with no monetary value.


In any case, the credit institution is required to inform you of the result of the process.

Do not attempt to put the banknote into circulation. The manufacture, warehousing, and distribution of counterfeit money is a crime that is punished with up to 12 years of imprisonment (Articles 234 al 238 of the Federal Penal Code).

For more information on presumably counterfeit money, dial 01-800-BANXICO (01 800 226 9426) or send an e-mail to dinero@banxico.org.mx

* Available only in Spanish.

Background information