The Bad Check Unit was created to assist the business community and private citizens of Calvert County in obtaining money lost as a result of the writing of bad checks. The program operates as follows: When a business or private citizen receives a bad check, they must notify the individual who wrote the check, via certified letter, that the check has been returned by their bank unpaid. The letter should indicate the reason for the return of the check (insufficient funds, closed account, stop payment, etc.). The business/citizen must allow the individual ten days to make the check good. If the writer of the bad check does not make good on the check within that timeframe, the business or private citizen should provide the State’s Attorney’s Office with a copy of the bad check (front and back) which includes the bank’s notation regarding the reason for nonpayment, a copy of the letter sent to the individual and a copy of the certified mail return receipt. This office will send a letter to the individual demanding that they make the check good within ten days. If this request is not met, the business or private citizen must file for criminal charges with the District Court Commissioner at 200 Duke Street, Prince Frederick, MD. Once the charges are filed, the State’s Attorney’s Office will handle the prosecution of the case. After a conviction, the defendant will be ordered to pay restitution to the victim in the amount of the bad check.
NOTE: The State’s Attorney’s Office cannot accept third-party checks for criminal prosecution. The statutory language of Criminal Laws Article, Section 8-103, severely limits the ability of this office to successfully prosecute a third-party drawer.
1. MAIL CERTIFIED LETTER TO THE CHECK WRITER GIVING THEM 10 DAYS TO MAKE PAYMENT.
2. IF THE CHECK WRITER DOES NOT PAY YOU WITHIN 10 DAYS, SEND COPIES OF THE FOLLOWING ITEMS TO THE STATE’S ATTORNEY’S OFFICE AT 200 DUKE STREET, SUITE 2500, PRINCE FREDERICK, MD 20678 (or email to CalvertSAODistrict@calvertcountymd.gov):
- COPY OF THE BAD CHECK (WITH THE BANK’S NOTATION STATING THE REASON FOR NONPAYMENT OF THE CHECK)
- THE COMPLETED BAD CHECK UNIT FORM
- CERTIFIED POSTAL RECEIPT
- COPY OF YOUR DEMAND LETTER
3. THE STATE’S ATTORNEY’S OFFICE WILL SEND A LETTER INSTRUCTING THE CHECK WRITER TO MAKE PAYMENT WITHIN 10 DAYS. YOU WILL RECEIVE A COPY OF THAT LETTER FOR YOUR RECORDS. IF YOU DO NOT RECEIVE PAYMENT AFTER TEN DAYS YOU MUST GO TO THE OFFICE OF THE DISTRICT COURT COMMISSIONER AND TAKE OUT CRIMINAL CHARGES. MAKE SURE YOU BRING COPIES OF THE ABOVE NOTICES WHEN YOU GO TO SEE THE COMMISSIONER.