Dont Pass Bounced Checks!
Be careful of bouncing a check, it could subject you to civil and criminal penalties. If not properly dealt with, bouncing checks could become very costly and land you in jail!
CIVIL: Per California Civil Code 1719, an NSF check creates a new liability in the amount of the check plus $25.00. Moreover, if the check is not paid within 30 days of demand, then it also creates treble damages. Accordingly, writing a $1000.00 NSF check could cost you $4,000.00, or more depending upon an attorney provision and cost clause!
CRIMINAL: Passing a NSF check is also a violation of Penal Code Section 476a. The provisions of that section provide that a prosecutor could move for the conviction of a misdemeanor or felony. 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.
In most cases, bankruptcy will eliminate bounced checks. Nevertheless, bankruptcy is a civil matter and will not alleviate criminal prosecution. Generally speaking, small checks are not prosecuted, but larger ones such as $100 or more, may be prosecuted. Debtors prosecuted are encouraged to enter the check restitution program.
Written by Michael G. Doan–
Owner of the Oceanside Bankruptcy Attorney office, Michael not only manages his business, but is also a highly skilled San Diego Bankruptcy Attorney with over 20 years of experience. He specializes in many fields, such as: insolvency, bankruptcy, consumer rights, debt negotiation, creditor collection abuse, estate planning, contracts, real estate, and tax. Michael is currently concentrating his practice solely in Bankruptcy Law and is a Board Certified Specialist in Consumer Bankruptcy Law by the American Board of Certification, one of only fourteen such attorneys in all of California. Mr. Doan also practices on the cutting edge of bankruptcy law, and was the first attorney in the entire Southern District of California to file the very first Chapter 7 Bankruptcy and very first Chapter 13 Bankruptcy under the new Bankruptcy Laws which went into effect on October 17, 2005.
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