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Worthless Checks

The Attorney General for the State of Tennessee has ruled that “The Worthless Check Law (TCA 39-14-121) can only be invoked when the bad check is given for a current or future item or service”. “A worthless check given for labor, materials, and services after the job is completed” would subject the drawer to being arrested and prosecuted for Theft of Property or Theft of Services. The questions listed below must be answered to ascertain whether the check will be prosecuted under the Worthless Check Law or Theft of Property or Services law.

  1. Was the check written for services that were already completed?
  2. Was the check written for goods or merchandise, and payment was not required at the time of delivery?
  3. Was the check written as a payment on a pre-existing account or contract?
  4. Was the check post-dated, even by accident?
  5. Has the check been reported stolen by the account holder?
  6. Are you willing to go before a Judge to sign an arrest warrant?

If the answer to questions 1 through 4 is “yes” the drawer can be prosecuted for Theft of Property or Services. A “yes” to question 5 may be a Forgery or Identity Theft. A Memphis Police Department (1) Incident Report and (2) an investigation conducted by an Economic Crimes Bureau investigator is required before (3) an arrest warrant can be signed. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.