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Maryland Fraudulent Checks Lawyer

Bad Checks Include:

  • Check from a closed account
  • Check from a fake bank account
  • Stopping payment before check is cashed
  • Writing a check without sufficient funds

Title 8, Subtitle 1, of the Maryland Criminal Code covers laws related to bad checks.  In simple terms, it is against the law to issue a check with the knowledge that the account does not contain sufficient funds to clear.  Essentially, if you issue a check knowing that the payment for the check is likely to be refused when the recipient of the check presents it to a bank, then you are breaking the law and may be charged with writing a fraudulent check.

Additionally, if your intention is to stop payment on the check before it can be cashed, but after you have received the goods or services for which you issued it, or if you write a check on a nonexistent or a closed account, then you may be similarly charged.  As with all criminal charges, you should not face the possibility of conviction alone.  If you have been charged with a fraudulent checks–related crime or believe a charge against you may be forthcoming, it is important that you contact an experienced fraudulent checks attorney in Maryland.  A Maryland fraudulent checks lawyer can help build a strong defense on your behalf.

Fraudulent Checks Offenses

Probably the most important element to understand in relation to a bad check charge is the legal concept of “mens rea” (Latin for “guilty mind”), which means that you have knowledge or intention of the crime you are committing.  In the case of writing a bad check, this means that you must know that there are insufficient funds to cover the check, or that you have the intention of stopping payment, at the time you write it.

There are various methods the state can employ to establish that you did have such knowledge, even if you claim that you did not.  A Maryland fraudulent checks attorney who is familiar with this area of law can analyze the facts of your case and establish a strong defense for you.  If you go to court unprepared, you could very likely be convicted and receive the maximum penalties for the crimes with which you are charged.

Penalties for Bad Checks In Maryland

The value of the goods or services you have used a bad check to obtain generally determine the severity of the charge.  It is also important to remember, however, that depending on the details of your case, the state may also charge you with additional offenses, such as identity theft.  Maryland Criminal Code Section 8-103–106 outlines the maximum penalties for bad check and fraudulent check-related crimes:

  • CR 8-103 – Obtaining property or services with a value less than $100 by bad check: misdemeanor, 90 days in jail and a fine of $500
  • CR 8-103 – Obtaining property or services with a value less than $500 by bad check: misdemeanor, 18 months in prison and a fine of $100
  • CR 8-103 – Obtaining property or services with a value of $500 by bad check or more: felony, 15 years in prison and a fine of $1,000
  • CR 8-108 – Paying court fines or costs with a bad check: misdemeanor, 60 days and $100

In addition, if convicted, you will be required to pay restitution to the party or parties who had an interest in the goods or services provided, which were obtained by the fraudulent check you wrote. For this reason it’s important you contact a Maryland fraudulent checks lawyer as soon as you are accused.

Hiring an Experienced Maryland Fraudulent Checks Lawyer

Whether the fraudulent check charge you are facing is a misdemeanor or felony, a conviction can have serious consequences on your future.  Our Maryland fraudulent checks lawyers work closely with our clients in order to carefully analyze all sides of their case, with the goal of aggressively defending them in court.  Therefore, if you or a loved one are facing a fraudulent check charge, please contact our Maryland office today to arrange a free consultation.