› an examination of something in order to make certain that it is correct or the way that it should be: give sth a check Give the invoice another check before you seal the carton.carry out/do a check (on/of sth) They carried out a check of all the electrical equipment. regular/routine check A regular check is done on all our equipment.quick/thorough check All these documents will need a thorough check before you send them off.keep a check on sth It's my job to keep a check on stock levels. Security checks at airports have become very strict.
› an examination of somebody to see if they are healthy or have a medical problem: health/medical check Purchasers of the policy will be required to undergo a medical check.
› US (UK bill) COMMERCE a piece of paper given to you when you have finished eating at a restaurant, showing how much money you owe: Can we have the check, please?
› something that stops something else from increasing or getting worse: keep a check on sth The new administration is expected to keep a tight check on inflation.act/serve as a check on sth These controls are designed to act as a check on fraud.
hold/keep sth in check › to put a limit on something so that it does not increase or become worse: We must find ways of keeping our expenditure in check.
checks and balances › GOVERNMENT rules intended to prevent one person or group from having too much power within a country or an organization: A system of checks and balances exists to ensure that our government is truly democratic. Many executives amassed enormous power by ignoring the normal checks and balances of the financial world. → See also background check, credit check, sales check, spot check