Bad Checks

Sheriff's Office

For a check, or checks, that add up to an amount in excess of $500, please contact the Mille Lacs County Sheriff's Office at 320-983-8250.

Multiple Checks Passed by the Same Person

Only checks received from the same person can be added together to determine a total value ($499 or less, $500 or greater) and only checks presented within 6 consecutive months can be included in a single aggregated total.

Suggestions to help from being the victim of a Bad Check include:

  • Accept no "Posted Dated" checks. These are checks that are accepted prior to the date on the check. Under some circumstances, this may not be a criminally prosecutable offense because the check is accepted knowing there is no money in the bank.
  • Accept no "Third Party" checks. These checks are written by one person to another person and cashed by a "third" person or business. These are extremely difficult to prosecute.
  • Do not accept checks without proper identification. This means a state driver's license or a state identification card (picture identification). Under no circumstances accept Social Security cards as identification. Social Security cards can be obtained by anyone in any name. You may wish to write down the customer's driver's license number on the check.
  • Maintain records about prior bad checks. Keeping accurate records of people who have passed bad checks in the past may prevent accepting another bad check from the same person again.

Law Enforcement

Information Law Enforcement can use to help prosecute a Bad Check case includes:

  • The check should be completed and signed in the clerk's presence. The clerk must be able to testify that the passer actually signed the check.
  • Deposit all checks within 30 days of receipt. The shorter the time between an event and prosecuting an offender, the easier it will be for witnesses to remember the facts and secure helpful evidence.
  • Deposit all checks within 30 days of receipt. The shorter the time between an event and prosecuting an offender, the easier it will be for witnesses to remember the facts and secure helpful evidence.
  • In addition to verifying a person's identity, record other information about the person presenting the check. Make sure the customer's phone number and address appear somewhere on the check. If the customer has an address that the not appear permanent or that would make it difficult to trace him or her later on, e.g. a hotel room or a post office box, think carefully before accepting the check.
  • The person accepting the check must initial the check indicating they have matched the picture identification with the person writing the check. It must be established who took the check at your place of business. The passer of the check must be identified, and the first step in this process is to identify the person who accepted the check.
  • Set a store limit on the amount of the check the cashier can accept. If it is over the amount, call for a supervisor. This will allow two people to identify the check writer and approve the check.