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Florida has established laws to prevent and prosecute the distribution of bad checks. It is a criminal offense to issue, create, or distribute a check or any other written money order for payment when at the time the issuer knows there are no adequate funds to cover the payment but issues them anyway.
These laws not only apply to paper checks but they also apply to debit cards. Any offense which involves a bad check may be serious, especially when the intended victim of the offense is the Internal Revenue Service, Department of Revenue, or any other government agency. It is illegal as well to cease payment on a check with the intent to defraud the person or entity to which it was issued.
Penalties for Using Worthless Checks in Florida
- Issuing a worthless check for less than $150 is a first-degree misdemeanor with fines up to $1,000 plus court costs and up to 1 year in county jail.
- Issuing a worthless check for $150+ is a third-degree felony with fines up to $5,000 and up to 5 years in state prison.
The issuer can also face civil charges. If convicted in civil court, they may encounter paying up to three times the amount of the check in addition to attorney fees and additional costs. These penalties are extremely severe, which is why it is important that you hire an experienced worthless checks attorney in Miami if you are facing these charges.
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