What is a Bad Check and Which Bad Checks can you submit to the District Attorney's Office?
A bad check is a check that is not honored when presented at the bank. The bank may indicate that the check was not honored due to "insufficient funds", "account closed", "stop payment" or some other reason. If the bank returns the check to you or informs you that the check was not honored, then you can submit the bank copy of the check to our unit for review, and we will identify whether or not we can help you obtain restitution.
There are some circumstances where a check bounced that we generally do not accept submissions for review. The following is a non-exhaustive list:
• Checks that are not in exchange for goods or services.
• Checks that do not show payee, date, amount or signature.
• Checks that are pre-dated or post-dated, or where an agreement was made to hold the check for later payment.
• Checks, other than to a licensed gaming establishment, for which you have later accepted partial payment.
• Checks for which identification of the check writer and person accepting the check cannot be ascertained.
• Checks not written or passed within Clark County.
• Checks to pay a pre-existing debt such as a loan.
• Checks that are altered or suspected of being forgeries or counterfeit.
• Checks written for less than $50.00
• Two-party checks.
If we are unable to help you because of the particular facts of your case, we will return the check with an explanation.
First steps to take if you get a Bad Check
In order to submit a check to our office to obtain restitution or prosecute the writer, you must first send a written notice of dishonor to the person who signed and passed the bad check to you or your business. This notice must be sent by certified mail. The notice must be sent to the address printed on the check and should inform the maker that the check was dishonored. Retain a copy of the notice for future use. Sample form letters are included on the website.
If the maker fails to pay the value of the instrument in full within ten (10) days after the written notice is mailed, the law presumes the check was passed with the intent to defraud. If you have not been paid for the check by the end of this ten-day period, you may request that this office commence a procedure to obtain restitution or prosecute the writer of the check. This is done by completing a Bad Check Complaint Form (copy provided). Attach a copy of the check returned by the bank, a copy of your 10-day notice sent to the check writer with the certified mail receipt.
If the offender contacts you after you have sent the bad check to our office and wants to pay off the check, you must refer him/her to the Clark County District Attorney's Office. Accepting full or partial payment on the face value of the check will result in the District Attorney's Office ceasing efforts to collect restitution for you.
What you must send to the Bad Check Unit
1. A completed complaint form for each check submitted.
2. A copy of the 10-day letter that you sent to the offender with the receipt for certified mail.
3. The copy of the check returned by the bank.
4. A copy of the picture identification, if presented at the time the check was written.
The Bad Check Unit will not accept your case if you fail to provide all of the items listed above. Please take care to compile all of the items necessary prior to submission.
What actions does the District Attorney's Office take?
The job of the District Attorney's Criminal Division is criminal prosecution. However, Nevada Revised Statutes allow us to set up a Bad Check Diversion Unit in lieu of that prosecution if so desired by the offender. The primary goal of the Bad Check Diversion Unit is to expedite the process of obtaining 100% of the face value of the check(s), in addition to any "returned item" charges assessed to the victim's bank account and certified mail expenses incurred when attempting to notify the check writer. The maximum amount for these additional items is $25.00 per check. The offender shall also be required to pay an administrative fee to the District Attorney's Office as provided by law.
If your bad check case is accepted, the District Attorney's Office will send a letter alerting the check writer that the case has been presented for prosecution. If the offender fails to contact our office and does not arrange to pay restitution, then we will review your case for possible criminal prosecution.
Only the District Attorney's Office can determine whether the evidence is sufficient to file criminal charges, or whether the circumstances merit the expenditure of the resources necessary to pursue prosecution. If the District Attorney's Office decides to file criminal charges, you will be advised in writing.