The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) warns the public that the willful defacement, mutilation, tearing, burning or destruction of Philippine banknotes and coins are punishable by a fine of not more than PhP20,000.00 and/or imprisonment of not more than five years, under Presidential Decree No. 247. It also states that Philippine “banknotes and coins are issued for circulation as medium of exchange and to utilize them for other purposes does not speak well of the due respect and dignity befitting our currency.”
The following are among the prohibited acts of defacement and/or mutilation of Philippine currency:
- writing or putting marks on banknotes;
- willful tearing, burning, or destruction, in any manner, of Philippine currency;
- willful and excessive folding or crumpling that results in a breakdown of the structure and limpness of the banknote;
- willfully causing multiple random folds across the entire banknote that toughly affect its visual appearance; and
- willfully exposing banknotes or coins to chemicals or other materials resulting in the acceleration of the defacement, destruction, or natural wear and tear of the note or coin.
The public is also discouraged to staple banknotes and/or use adhesives to put on banknotes and coins as these will compromise their structural integrity.
The BSP encourages the public to report any information on improper handling of Philippine currency to the nearest police station or law enforcement agency, for appropriate action, or contact the Currency Management Sector for assistance at Tel. Nos. 988-4833 and 926-5092.