Coins as legal tender

Dear Atty. Chris Liquigan,

Since the start of the pandemic, my son has been saving in his piggy bank. Last week, he decided to open it after two years. My son managed to save a total of P14,000, with P6,000 in coins and the remainder in bills.

He wanted to use his coins to buy a skateboard but I’m afraid that it might take too long to count and no store will accept our money.

I need your thoughts on this, attorney. Thanks!



Dear Rose,

Section 52 of the New Central Bank Act (Republic Act 7653), as amended by Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Circular 537, Series of 2006, the law provides:

“All notes and coins issued by the Banko Sentral shall be fully guaranteed by the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and shall be legal tender in the Philippines for all debts, both public and private. Provided, however, that, unless otherwise fixed by the Monetary Board, coins shall be legal tender in amounts not exceeding P1,000 for denominations of one peso (P1) and above, and in amounts not exceeding P100 for denominations of 25 centavos or less.”

So as you intend to use the coins saved by your son for payment, please consider that the law merely says that as a general rule, all notes and coins issued by the BSP have a legal tender power, which means they can be used as payment and must be accepted as such. However, there is a limit to the legal tender power of coins.

Coins in denominations of P1, P5 and P10, are considered legal tender if used in amounts not exceeding P1,000. While coin denominations of one centavo, five centavos, 10 centavos and 25 centavos, are considered legal tender if used in amounts not exceeding P100. Thus, if you opt to pay in coins, you have to make sure that your payment in coins does not exceed the aforementioned amounts, or else they will not be considered legal tender for payment. Thus, it might be more prudent for you to exchange the coins for bills in your preferred bank prior to purchasing your son’s skateboard.
Hope this helps.

Atty. Chris Liquigan

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *