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Currency Image Use

Illustrations of U.S. Currency

Federal law permits color illustrations of U.S. currency only under the following conditions:

Diagram of two partial $20 bills
  • the illustration is of a size less than three-fourths or more than one and one-half, in linear dimension, of each part of the item illustrated; 
  • the illustration is one-sided; and
  • all negatives, plates, positives, digitized storage medium, graphic files, magnetic medium, optical storage devices and any other thing used in the making of the illustration that contain an image of the illustration or any part thereof are destroyed and/or deleted or erased after their final use.
    18 U.S.C. § 504(1), 31 CFR § 411.1.


Black and White Reproductions

Title 18, United States Code, Section 504 permits black and white reproductions of currency and other obligations, provided such reproductions meet the size requirement. 


Use and Reproduction of U.S. Currency for Advertising Prohibited Under Law

Under section 475 of the U.S. Criminal Code,  “whoever designs, engraves, prints, makes, or executes, or utters, issues, distributes, circulates, or uses any business or professional card, notice, placard, circular, handbill, or advertisement in the likeness or similitude of any obligation or security of the United States issued under or authorized by any Act of Congress or writes, prints, or otherwise impresses upon or attaches to any such instrument, obligation, or security, or any coin of the United States, any business or professional card, notice, or advertisement, or any notice or advertisement whatever, shall be fined under this title.”  18 U.S.C. § 475.


More Information

For additional information on crimes related to U.S. currency you may visit, UScurrency.gov.