Automated Clearing House (ACH) is an electronic network for financial transactions in the United States. Many checks are now being converted electronically and run through as an ACH. This is called electronic check conversion, this is the process in which your check is used as a source of information – for the check number, the account number, and the routing number (which identifies your financial institution). The information is then used to make a one-time electronic payment from your account; the check itself is not the method of payment. The financial institution will not return a copy of the check with your monthly statement. Consumer customers have protection under Regulation E if errors or unauthorized amounts have posted to their account. You have the right to file a dispute for 60 days after your statement has printed, which contains the error. The dispute could be as a result of being charged the wrong amount or charged more than once for the same item (duplicate posting or the original check and the electronic debit might have both been processed).
One type of an ACH is an ARC, which stands for Accounts Receivable Conversion. This would be a check that you mail directly to a biller. Many times your credit card company or utility company converts the check you mail them into an ARC electronic item.
Another type of ACH is a BOC, which stands for Back Office Conversion. This would be a check that you signed and they scanned it and gave it back to you. This normally happens at a store, such as Wal-Mart.