When a person receives
a bad check, they are required by New York Statutes to notify the
check writer. If the check writer resolves the check at this
point, it is no longer an issue.
However, if the
check writer refuses to make restitution, the check can be turned
over to this Check Enforcement Program. The check writer now
has two choices: to comply with the requirements of the Program or
face possible criminal prosecution.
Because this is
a pre-filing diversion program, there is a strong incentive for
check writers to comply - they pay full restitution and the required
fees or face possible prosecution. For the victim the process
the original check attached to a completed Check Complaint Form.
Multiple checks (from the same check writer) may be attached to the
From that point,
the Program works directly with the check writer to obtain
restitution. Besides paying the full amount of the check, the check
writer is required to pay a service fee to the victim as well as pay
the administrative cost of the program. Finally, they are required
to complete a Check Writers Educational Course.
check writer does not comply with the requirements of the Program,
prosecution proceedings can begin or, if the case is not
prosecutable, we notify you with an explanation of why. You
may then wish to turn the matter over to a private collection agency
or pursue it through a small claims court.
Benefits for the entire community
While the primary goal
of the program is returning more to businesses and individuals who
have lost money to bad check crime, there are aspects of the program
that help all of us.
Check offenders pay all the
costs of the program, so victims pay nothing. And no
county money or tax money goes to pay for this program. That means
no costs for merchants, other taxpayers or county government.
Fewer bad checks
Another important goal
of the Program is fewer bad checks being issued in the first place.
Prevention is preferable to prosecution. Prevention takes several
forms in the Check Enforcement Program.
Click on those links to learn more about how we work to help
merchants and other victims avoid accepting bad checks and how we
work to help bad check offenders avoid writing them.