Ask a Lawyer and Get Answers to Your Legal Questions
Hi and welcome to JA. Ray here to help you today.Please bear with me a few moments while I review your question and respond.
bad check is a check that you cannot cash because the person who wrote the check: 1) doesn't have sufficient funds to cover it; or 2) told the bank to stop payment on it without having a valid reason for doing so.
Writing a bad check is a crime if the check writer knew that there were insufficient funds to cover the check and intended to defraud someone. (California Penal Code section 476a.) It is also a crime to forge a check or write a fake check. If you believe you are a victim of criminal conduct, you should report this to the police department, sheriff's office, or district attorney's office of the county where the conduct took place.
Under California Civil Code section 1719, you can sue to recover the amount of a check if someone writes you a bad check without having a valid reason for doing so. You may also recover damages equaling three times the amount of the check, up to a maximum of $1,500, if you meet certain conditions:
You would take the check to your local District Attorney here and file charges on this, it is a hot check.
There are two SOLs in this situation, first the civil SOL (which I believe is four years in Cal.) and the criminal SOL which is 5 years.
If you pass bad checks totaling nine hundred fifty dollars ($950) or less, and you do not have certain prior convictions on your record, then you are guilty of a misdemeanor.
A misdemeanor conviction subjects you to up to one year in a county jail and a maximum $1,000 fine. A felony conviction subjects you to up to three years in the California state prison and a maximum $10,000 fine.
And in addition to these criminal penalties, the payee could sue you in civil court to recoup the full amount of the check as well as additional damages that could total up to $1,500.
I would try to prosecute them here first you are way more likely to collect as a crime and restitution here is possible.
I appreciate the chance to help you today.Thanks again.