Bad Check Unit

                                                           Lieutenant Juan Diaz


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The Process

After the merchant has exhausted their own collection efforts, the check(s) are referred to the B.C.U. (Bad Check Unit). They in turn attempt collections through a series of letters and phone calls. If the check writer responds and either pays in full or sets up a payment plan, they are placed in a diversion program and avoid prosecution. The final step in the diversion program is attendance in a four hour Financial Management class. If the check writer refuses collection/diversion attempts, an investigation is initiated for possible criminal prosecution. If convicted, the check writer faces incarceration, additional court costs and restitution for all bad checks.


The DA/B.C.U. collects:
  - Face Value of the check (s) and
  - Out of pocket bank fees up to $10.00
If collected, all of the above is sent to the merchant. The program is entirely funded through fees charged to and collected from the check writer. No cost to the citizens of Butte County.


Anyone receiving a bad check in Butte County is eligible to participate in the program if the following conditions are met:
  - The check must have been accepted in Butte County
  - The victim (acceptor) must submit the check to the bank before referring it to the program
  - The victim will not accept any payment on checks referred to the DA/B.C.U.

Ineligible Checks
  - Post or Pre dated checks
  - Checks held for an agreed time period

We Work With Local Police on the Following
  - Forged Checks
  - Stolen Checks
  - Counterfeit Checks



For More Information Call: (530) 538-7089 or write:   


Butte County District Attorney
Bad Check Unit
3-B County Center Drive
Oroville, CA 95965







Michael L. Ramsey
District Attorney




The true costs of crime are often hidden. Nowhere is this more apparent than with the problem of bad checks. Bad Checks cost everyone money. Businesses in Butte County lose hundreds of thousands of dollars each year as a result of these bad checks. When businesses are forced to raise prices to cover such losses, we, the consumers, bear the cost of this criminal activity. In an effort to stop the bad check writer, return money to the victim and, whenever possible, rehabilitate the offender, my office has developed the Bad Check Restitution/Prosecution Unit. This Unit, staffed by attorneys, investigators and clerical support, vigorously pursues restitution owed to victims of bad checks and offers the bad check writer an alternative to prosecution. Those who do not, or will not, respond to incentives provided by the program and who have violated the bad check laws will be prosecuted.






Listen To Mr. Ramsey




Download Bad Check Brochure

 by clicking link below:


Bad Check Unit vs Collection Agencies

Collection Statistics


How to Apply

The victim must complete a Preliminary Bad Check Report for each check. This form takes less than a minute to complete and is easily obtained by mail, email, fax or in person. Or download it from this website from the links below in your word processor's format.


Bad Check Form - Adobe PDF



How to Check ID

Following these steps can provide a high level of confidence in accepting personal and payroll checks. Always insist on identification. Either California drivers license, California ID card or Military ID.
  - Compare signatures. This is more of an art than science but once you do it a few times,   recognizing inconsistent handwriting becomes reasonably accurate. Ask your customer to provide their CDL. Hold the check above or below the license. If not similar, ask for another form of picture/signature ID.
  - Compare the picture. While the license is out, look at the picture and at the customer. You would be surprised how often this simple task is not done.
  - Review the check! Make sure the information on the check matches the information on the identification. The check must have a current address, phone number, Driverís License Number and the acceptorís initials.


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