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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
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Experience:  Numerous criminal trials ranging from traffic to murder, practicing Criminal Law for 20+ years.
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Statute of limitations for check fraud.

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Statute of limitations for check fraud in Washington State.


Could use a bit of insight on how to help a friend of mine. She called me panicking this afternoon. She got a call from an attorney back east, telling her that they were going to be sending the Everett police out to her to read her her rights and arrest her for check fraud. This is the background:


In 2004 she wrote checks on an account her husband at the time had closed. There was a miscommunication and she continued to write checks on the wrong account. As soon as they realized this, they went down to the bank to try and rectify it. As far as they knew, they thought everything was resolved. Now, almost nine years later, she gets this call from an attorney’s office trying to collect and telling her that if she doesn’t make payment today, they are going to send the police over in the morning to arrest her for check fraud. It was a misunderstanding, yet they are trying to make her sound criminal.


I’m guessing that it is just scare tactics as it sounds like a collection agency, but need to know if there is any truth to their threats.

It can vary depending on the amount but it wouldn't be more than six years even in a worst case scenario.

Also, no attorney is going to say "pay today or we turn it in to the police". That would be a serious ethical violation and could get them and their license into trouble. It is probably a bottom feeding collection agency pretending to be a lawyer's office, which is actually common lately.

The civil statute of limitations is six years as well, so they are using the threat because they know they can't sue and recover.

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