Worthless Check Policy
- Insufficient identification was obtained at the time the check was passed and/or the individual accepting the check is unable to positively identify the check passer.
- The check is written for less than $10.00 and no other checks were submitted which would make the combined total exceed $10.00.
- Legal notice was not properly given. Notice is presumed to have been given when a certified, restricted delivery, return receipt requested letter is mailed to the check passer at the address appearing on the check. Notice must indicate that if the check is not paid within seven days, the check will be submitted to the County Attorney for prosecution.
- The service charge in the letter of legal notice exceeds $30.00 per checks which is allowable under Kansas law.
- The address on the check is missing or incomplete.
- The information in the report you submitted does not indicate who accepted the check.
- The check was returned marked, "Uncollected Funds" or "Refer to Maker." This usually means that the bank has put a hold on the checking account. Contact the bank concerning the reason for return.
- All items necessary for criminal prosecution of a worthless check have not been submitted. We must have the actual check, a copy of the letter sent, the signed green receipt or return envelope, the completed Affidavit for Worthless Check and the Offense Report.
- The check was not submitted within 120 days from the date it was written.
- The identification information appearing on the check indicates it was passed by someone other than the signer of the check.
- The issuance of the check must have caused you to give up something of value. It cannot be for payment of an antecedent debt.
- Bankruptcy has been filed. Contact the bankruptcy report to advise that you are a creditor.
- Criminal charges have already been filed and the case has been resolved.
- Two party checks and Stop Payment checks are exempt from criminal prosecution.
- You do not provide our office with identifying information on the check writer such as social security number or driver's license number and date of birth so a criminal history background check can be run on the check writer.
Worthless Check Process
Pursuant to K.S.A. 21-3707, before we prosecute someone for writing you a bad check, you must send a letter to the check writer, notifying him/her of the bad check (Notice of Bad Check). The notice letter must be mailed to the check writer at the address listed on the check. Notice must be mailed in the U.S. mail certified - return receipt requested - restricted delivery. The approximate cost is $7.00 - $8.00 for this type of mailing. If the postal service charges you much less, please double check to make sure the letter is being mailed properly.
Within fourteen (14) days of sending the notice letter, you will either receive the green card showing that your letter was picked up or you will receive the entire envelope marked "Unclaimed, Refused, Attempted, Not Known," etc.
Once you receive either of the above from the U.S. Postal Service, please bring the following items to our office: (1) either the green card or the returned letter in its envelope and (2) the original check - no photocopies accepted.
Filing Affidavit: Complete the Affidavit and Offense Report and return to the County Attorney's Office to be sworn. The affidavit must name the person who accepted the check from the check writer, the identification that was obtained from the check writer, and who sent notice to the check writer.
Do not accept any payment from the check writer after submitting the Affidavit and Offense Report. If payment is accepted from the check writer prosecution is no longer possible. Send the check writer to the County Attorney's Office to handle the situation.
Franklin County's policy, which is consistent with most other jurisdictions, is to send a courtesy letter giving the check writer 10 additional days to pay the check at the County Attorney's Office. The letter will explain in detail what the check writer needs to do to pick-up the check and make payment prior to the filing of a criminal complaint.
It is the complainant's responsibility to contact the County Attorney's Office to determine whether payment has been made in office. If payment has not been made in the County Attorney's Office, usually within 90 days (due to high volume of check cases processed) and all criteria has been met to pursue, the County Attorney's Office will file a criminal complaint against the check writer. If the check has been paid by the check writer and/or the above criteria has not been met by the complainant, the request for prosecution will be denied.
Once the County Attorney's Office has filed a criminal complaint against the check writer, either a summons or a warrant will be issued for the check writer. You will be notified by subpoena if a trial is scheduled. The individual who accepted the check, the person who wrote the notice letter, and the individual who mailed the notice letter will all be subpoenaed.