If you’re often getting paid through a check, sometimes bounced checks happen. And while bounced checks might feel like you are being tricked or scammed, the customer might have made an honest mistake.
It’s, therefore, crucial to contact the customer and try to resolve the situation as soon as possible.
However, if the customer is adamant about cooperating and resolving the issue, you should contact a professional to help you recover your losses. Here is what you should know about a bounced check recovery and the best way to face it.
Statute of Limitations on Bounced Checks
Under section 600.2952 of the Michigan Legislature, the statute of limitation on a bounced check in Michigan is six years. Michigan prosecutors are required to file charges on bounced checks within six years of the commission of the offense.
And like any criminal offense, prosecutors must present proof and evidence beyond a reasonable doubt. Before then, the charged customer is innocent until proven guilty.
How Much Are You Entitled To Collect on a Bad Check?
If you are owed money because of a bounced check, you are entitled to collect the total face value of the bounced check and any additional damages you have incurred. If the customer resolves the check within seven days from the signing date, they should add a $25 fee.
If it’s resolved within 30 days, you are entitled to a fee of $35. However, if the customer fails to resolve the bad check, they are responsible for civil damages of up to twice the check’s amount or $100, plus additional costs of $250.
So You’ve Received a Bad Check… Now What?
After receiving a bad check, it’s critical to know what you should do to avoid cash delays, scammed, and overdraft fees from the bank. Here are several steps you should take:
Step 1 – Identify the Reason It Happened
The first step is to identify why the check bounced. Call the customer and ask them if there is any issue that might have caused the check to bounce. In most cases, bounced checks occur when the customer has insufficient funds available to cover the full payment on the check.
Other common reasons include illegibility or lack of a signature, incorrect information, and stale dating. By contacting the customer, you can quickly resolve the matter. However, if they are unreachable or unwilling to cooperate, it’s time to move on to the next step.
Step 2 – Contact the Bank
It’s essential to contact the bank and find out why the check bounced. Bounced checks attract enormous fees, which might place you in a financial crisis. Bounced check fees vary depending on your bank’s policy, but they can be as much as $35.
Bounced checks also cause considerable delays in your financial transactions, which might lead to more overdrawn fees. By contacting the bank and explaining the situation, you can potentially avoid more charges.
Step 3 – File a Police Report
Writing a bad check is illegal in Michigan. This means that you can file a police report, and the customer might face criminal charges if they refuse to cooperate. Bounced check cases are generally misdemeanor offenses, which means that there is no mandatory jail time.
However, if they are convicted of writing bad checks, they can face up to 93 days in jail and up to $1000 in fines. Involve the police when you can’t reach the customer. Don’t threaten the customer as that is considered extortion, verbal abuse, and harassment.
Step 4 – Get Professional Help
A debt collection attorney or a collections agency can help you recover your losses from the bounced check.
They collect the money on your behalf but take a percentage of the money recovered as a fee. Hiring a debt collection lawyer or a collections agency will reduce your workload and increase your chances of getting back your money.
Do You Need a Bad Check Collection Agency?
Hiring a bad check collection agency is an excellent option if you want to recover your debts quickly and effortlessly. While debt collection agencies have the necessary expertise to recover debts they cannot represent you in a courtroom.
Hiring a debt collection attorney is the best action to take if you want a complete, hands-free, experience including legal advice and representation during debt collection.
Debt collection attorneys understand the legal system, which means they know the proper steps to take when filing an official complaint.
Why You Should Hire a Debt Collection Attorney & When To Do So
A debt collection attorney will help you take the necessary legal action against the customer. Debt collection attorneys are experts in debt recovery and know the proper steps to take when filing an official complaint.
You should hire a debt collection attorney when you want to pursue debts through the court system, need to recover large debts, or need legal advice or assistance with debt collection. Benefits of hiring a debt collection attorney include:
- They are legal experts with extensive knowledge of debt recovery.
- They know what you should and shouldn’t do to recover your losses.
- They use the legal system to your advantage, which might help you resolve the open case faster.
- Hiring a debt collection attorney will help you recover your losses and get the money that is rightfully yours quickly.
Need Help With Bounced Check Recovery? Contact Hanna & Jarbo.
Hanna & Jarbo, PLLC achieves debt collection of 85% in every case. You won’t find better debt collection services anywhere in the Midwest. We apply principled fundamentals and creative solutions to help our clients recover a seriously delinquent, charged-off, or past-due debt.
Our firm is fully compliant with several data protection laws, including HIPAA, FCRA, GLB, TCPA, and FDCPA, to handle highly sensitive debtor information like financial and medical records.
Our Specialty Practice Areas
Hanna & Jarbo is a leading debt collection, recovery, and creditor law firm. We help creditors recover debts owed to them by consumers and companies through highly effective, ethical, and respectful debt collection practices. Our services include:
- Supplier Account Receivables
- Returned Checks (including charge-back credit card payments)
- Landlord-Tenant Debt & Money Judgments
- Charged-off or non-paying commercial credit portfolios
- Construction debts
- Auto loan and deficiencies
- General loans, notes, and credit lines in default
- Secured and unsecured judgments or liens
- Foreign (non-Michigan) judgments
- Mortgage/Land Contract deficiencies
- Other commercial paper receivables
What Does Working With Us Look Like?
- Set up a free consultation call. We’ll explain everything you need to know about debt collection.
- Give us your debtor’s information. We need to know what to collect. Invoices, IOUs, leases, or promissory notes. Whatever you’ve got, we can use it.
- Sit back and relax. You don’t have to do anything further while we track down and collect your debt. We’ll do whatever is necessary to get your money back.
Why Work With Us?
Some of the distinct benefits of working with Hanna & Jarbo include:
- Our debt collection services are hands-off – we take the burden off your shoulders from the first step. We will take care of everything from A to Z as you concentrate on your business.
- Affordable – engaging us to handle your debts collection won’t be expensive since we only charge on debts recovered and not out of pocket.
- Hanna Jarbo achieves debt collection 85% of every case – you won’t find better debt collection services anywhere in the Midwest.
- We do things right the first time – it will save you money. We don’t charge out of pocket, only on debts recovered.
Don’t let your hard-earned cash slip away. Contact Hanna & Jarbo today to get started on your debt collection. We don’t charge out of pocket, and we collect debts in 85% of all cases.