Check fraud is when an individual attempts to or actually makes a purchase, finances a transaction or obtain bank funds using a counterfeit check. Common forms of check fraud including check kiting, forgery, paperhanging, and altering a check.
How is Check Fraud Defined in Washington State?
Washington State defines check fraud as the intent to defraud or issue a while check knowing there are insufficient funds or credit to cover the amount.
Are There Different Types of Crimes Considered Check Fraud in the State?
Yes. The State of Washington has different types of charges for check fraud. For instance, the charge of unlawful issuance of a bank check makes it illegal to intentionally issue a check, then stops payment on the check without arranging alternate payment within 20 days. It is also illegal to issue a bank check if the check writer knows there are insufficient funds or cried to cover the check when it was issued.
Does the Dollar Amount of the Check Make a Difference in What I’m Charged with?
Yes. Unlawful issuance of a bank check is punishable by a misdemeanor or felony depending on the amount. If it’s less than $750, then it’s a misdemeanor. But if it’s more than $750, then it’s a class C felony.
What is the Punishment for Check Fraud in Washington State?
The punishment for unlawful issuance of a bank check for more than $750 is up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000. If the amount is under $750, a defendant faces less than 1 year in jail and a fine of $5,000. If a series of bad checks were written exceeding $750, then it is considered a class C felony and is punishable with up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
Can a Criminal Lawyer Help Me with My Check Fraud Charge?
Yes. Contact a Washington criminal lawyer to learn more about the possible defenses you can use to fight your check fraud charge.