BAD CHECK PROCEDURE
FIRST STEP: A letter must be sent by certified mail to show receipt. Upon return of the receipt from the post office, ten days must pass before the next step is taken. If the return receipt shows that the individual has moved, you cannot go to the Second Step until a correct address has been determined. The merchant is responsible for obtaining the correct address.
SECOND STEP: The merchant must call for an appointment. Bad checks are normally taken care of between 8:15 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. The merchant must bring the check and green certified receipt to the office at the time of the scheduled appointment. Office personnel will examine the check and return receipt and determine if a notice will be sent. A 15 day Notice will be sent to the individual who has issued the bad check. The merchant will take the check and return receipt back to the store on this step as the individual will pay the merchant during the 15 day period. A copy of the notice will be sent to the merchant. To determine the 15 days, a date is listed at the top of the Notice. Count 15 days from that date.
THIRD STEP: After the 15 days are up, the merchant must call the Boone County Attorney’s Office to set up an appointment. At the time of the appointment, the merchant must bring the check, certified return receipt and the copy of the 15 day Notice with him/her. These documents will be left in the Clerk of Court’s Office with the Complaint which is filled out by this office and the Magistrate Judge will determine the amount of bond on the arrest warrant.
IF THE MERCHANT APPEARS AT THE COUNTY ATTORNEY’S OFFICE WITHOUT AN APPOINTMENT ON EITHER STEP, HE/SHE WILL BE SENT BACK TO THEIR ESTABLISHMENT. NO INFORMATION WILL BE LEFT WITH THE COUNTY ATTORNEY’S OFFICE FOR PROCESSING. APPOINTMENTS ARE REQUIRED ON BOTH STEPS.
BAD CHECK GUIDELINES
- Two party checks will not be processed.
- Three month deadline on all checks. This is from the time the check is written to the merchant. The merchant is responsible for seeing that the three steps above are completed within three months from the date of the check.
- One notice and complaint per customer. This office is not a collection agency. Example: John Smith writes a bad check to your business in November, 2009. The County Attorney’s Office sends a notice or files a complaint against John Smith in January, 2010. John Smith comes into your business and writes another bad check in May, 2010. You cannot bring this check to the office for processing. The merchant knew or should have known that John Smith was a risk in the area of bad check writing. If your business takes another check from John Smith in the future, you are responsible for that check.
- Be sure you have correct addresses before coming for your appointment. If the address is not correct and the Notice is returned to this office from the post office, we will not proceed any further.
- Make sure someone from your business can identify the individual who passed the check. This is important in that if the individual should deny the allegations, a trial will be scheduled. At the time of the trial, the employee from your business who took the check will be called to testify as to the identity of the individual who passed the check.
- If you take partial payment from an individual for a bad check, the intent of theft no longer exists. Example: Jane Doe wrote a check in the amount of $50.00 which did not clear at the bank. Jane comes into your business and pays $25.00 towards the bad check and does not pay the balance of $25.00. This check will not be processed by this office since the merchant has taken a partial payment.
- Bad checks cannot be processed through this office for payments on accounts established by the business. This is a small claim matter to be processed through the Clerk of Court’s Office.
- Obtain check writer’s social security or driver’s license number and date of birth at the time the check is written. This is required for issuance of the arrest warrant entered into the state computer. Without this information, step three cannot be done.
FOLLOW THE ABOVE STEPS AND INSTRUCTIONS TO AVOID YOUR BUSINESS FROM BEING REFUSED ASSISTANCE FROM THE COUNTY ATTORNEY’S OFFICE IN PROCESSING BAD CHECKS.