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Monday, October 23, 2017
Divisions/ProgramsSubmit Dishonored Check

How to Submit a Dishonored Check

Always Demand Identification

Requiring identification minimizes the chance of receiving a bad check. A driver’s license number written on the front of the check allows us to obtain a copy of the license. The driver’s license provides a photograph, a handwriting sample, a birth date, and a description of the check writer. All of these are needed for successful prosecution. Other useful information found on checks includes names, addresses and telephone numbers. Vehicle license plate numbers can also be helpful.

Primary Identification

Primary identification is an Arizona Driver’s License and should be used in all cases. Look to see if the person in the photo and the person standing in front of you are the same. Then compare the name and address on the license to those on the check. If only a PO Box is shown, ask for their physical address. If it’s a street address, ask if that is their mailing address. Also, compare the signature on the license to that on the check. Make sure their driver’s license has not expired. Do not accept a check with expired identification.

Secondary Identification

Secondary identification includes Military ID or a credit card with the name matching the one on the driver’s license. Other acceptable identification is an “official” issued identification card with picture. Social Security cards are not appropriate I.D. and should not be accepted.

Two Steps for Bad Check Collection

STEP 1. The Demand Letter

Make an effort to contact the bad check issuer. A Demand Letter sent to the bad check writer is one way to do this. This letter may be sent by first class or certified mail. It can also be hand-delivered directly to the bad check writer. If mailed, you must wait 21 days after mailing before submitting the check to the Bad Check Program. If the Demand Letter is hand-delivered, you must wait 16 days before submitting the check.

A sample Demand Letter is provided with this handbook. Use it to make copies for future use.

Instead of writing or typing out the check description (the area in the middle) you may wish to place the check within the lines, face up, and staple it to the Demand Letter. You may then photocopy the letter with the check attached. Remove the check. Mail only the photocopy to the bad check writer.

When you are trying to collect the check yourself do the following: Accept only cash, money order or cashier’s check. Be certain to collect reasonable costs such as bank fees and mailing charges. Return the check to the individual after you have received full payment.

STEP 2. The Check Transmittal Form

If your collection efforts have failed, submit the check to the Bad Check Program. Use a separate Check Transmittal Form for each check. Please provide as much information on the form as possible. Sign and date the form. The accuracy and completeness of this form determines whether or not we can prosecute, if necessary.

Be sure to include documentation of any additional fees (bank and certified mailing charges only) along with each form.

**For electronically transmitted checks, you must submit the bank issued Substitute Check and bank documentation showing the reason the check was dishonored.

A Check Transmittal Form is provided with this handbook. Use it to make copies for future use.

  • Once you send a bad check to The Bad Check Program, do not accept payment for the check from anyone except the Yavapai County Attorney’s Office. All monies must be collected through The Bad Check Program. If you do accept payment from anyone other than the County Attorney’s Office, immediately contact the Bad Check Program Office.
  • Please wait at least 60 days before requesting the status of a case. Case status is provided to victims upon request.
  • When the bad check writer makes restitution, you will receive a check from the Bad Check Program. The check will include the bad check writer’s name, check number and the amount of restitution.
  • If the bad check writer does not make restitution, the case will be reviewed for criminal misdemeanor charges by the Yavapai County Attorney’s Office.
  • Be sure to include documentation of any additional fees (bank and certified mailing charges only) along with each form.
  • **For electronically transmitted checks, you must submit the bank issued substitute check and bank documentation showing the reason the check was dishonored.
  • A Check Transmittal Form is provided with this handbook. Use it to make copies for future use.

NOTE: Make sure the check writer does not write their ID numbers on the check. Ask for the ID and write it yourself. This prevents a false number from being provided. Be sure to initial the entry.

If you have any doubts, don’t accept the check. You are not required by law to accept checks.

Matters Not Handled by the Bad Check Program

  1. “Held” checks (Post dated checks are accepted)
  2. Checks returned by the bank due to “Uncollected Funds”
  3. Checks that have been reported lost or stolen*
  4. Forged checks*
  5. Checks given to a private collection agency for action before submission to this Program
  6. Checks written more than six (6) months prior to submission to the Program may be rejected due to lapsed time span
  7. Bad checks passed on an Indian Reservation by a Native American or to a Native American, because we do not have jurisdiction
  8. Warrants and checks issued by a government or governmental agency because of governmental immunity from suit

* Contact your local law enforcement agency for these criminal offenses.

DUE TO STATUTORY AND LEGAL LIMITATION, THE YAVAPAI COUNTY ATTORNEY’S OFFICE BAD CHECK PROGRAM MAY NOT BE ABLE TO HANDLE OR PROSECUTE SOME CHECKS. IN THESE SITUATIONS, THE CHECKS WILL BE RETURNED TO THE VICTIM.

Sheila Polk

County Attorney

Elected 2000

Bio 

Primary Business Address:
255 E Gurley Street
Prescott, AZ 86301
Phone: (928) 771-3344
Fax: (928) 771-3110

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