Bad Check Program

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Welcome To the County Attorney's Bad Check Program Page 

Program Guide & Forms

It's a Crime:

Writing a bad check in Arizona is a crime and for first time offenders the crime may be charged as a Class 1 misdemeanor. In some cases, first time offenders may be charged with a class six felony depending on the amount the check was written for. Those who have a history of passing dishonored checks may face felony prosecution for crimes such as theft or fraudulent schemes.

The Penalty:

Arizona Revised Statute 13-1802(A) reads “ A sentence to pay a fine for a class 1 misdemeanor shall be a sentence to pay an amount, fixed by the court, not more than two thousand five hundred dollars.” In addition to the fine imposed the court may order restitution and other fees.

A.R.S. § 13-1810(A) Provides the Consequences of nonpayment of fines, restitution or incarceration costs. If an order of restitution is not paid the court may require the defendant to show cause why his/her default in payment should not be considered a contempt of court and may issue a summons or warrant for the defendants appearance.

Penalties for a conviction of a felony vary depending on the crime charged. However, a conviction of a felony may expose the offender to all or any part of fines, fees, restitution, imprisonment in the County Jail or the Arizona Department of Corrections, probation and/or community service.

Yuma County Bad Check Enforcement Program:

The Yuma County Attorney's Office offers its Bad Check Enforcement Program to individuals and businesses alike. There is no cost to use the program which will attempt to collect the full face value of the check(s) and any reasonable costs incurred by the holder. In addition, the program holds the check writer responsible for costs for collecting and processing the check(s) as provided by A.R.S. § 13-1809(C)(D)(E).

What You Should Do If You Receive a Bad Check:

If you or your business receives a bad check, send a notice to the check writer, informing them that the check has been returned unpaid. If you hand deliver the notice, the check writer has 12 days to submit payment to you. If you mail the notice, the check writer has 17 days from the mailing date to make full payment. You may add a reasonable fee up to $25 per check for returned check costs. If the fee is more than $25.00 you will be required to explain why if the court inquires. If you intend to add a fee in excess of $25.00 you are encouraged to keep all receipts you may have to justify the extra charge. Please do not accept a partial payment, as this may be considered a loan by you and will nullify criminal prosecution of the check writer and expose you to civil litigation to collect any unpaid balance.

If, after giving proper notice, you do not receive payment within the required time limits and the check meets program guidelines, you may submit the check to the Bad Check Program for enforcement. You should read and become familiar with the requirements for submitting the dishonored check to us.

We invite you to use the links provided below for additional information, program guidelines and forms, or you may also contact the Bad Check Program Coordinator at (928) 817-4300 weekdays (except legal holidays) between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Program Guide & Forms     


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