While all states may differ in the details when it comes to classifying the level of crime that is associated with writing bad checks, they all agree that knowingly writing a
bad check is a crime. As such, it is liable to civil penalties. In all states it is considered a crime to tender a check with full knowledge that there are insufficient funds to pay the check. States
also consider a crime has been committed when a person deliberately defrauds the payee.
New Hampshire in particular presumes that ten days after non-payment, a bad check is either evidence of insufficient funds, or evidence that the person who wrote the check had intent to defraud. As well, New Hampshire law states a bad check is a felony offense if the check amount is greater than $500. If it is less than $500, the law states it is a misdemeanor crime.
If convicted, New Hampshire law states a person is liable for the full amount of the original check, plus any interest accrued, all costs related to court fees, the cost of collection (within reason), and any extra fees. If a check is written to a city, the original amount is due, as well as a $15 fee. In addition, protest, legal, and bank fees will be included. Bad checks written to any state agency will oblige the payer to recompense the full amount, and in addition, bank and protest fees, as well as a $5 fee.
These laws do not apply to post-dated checks, as a post-dated check is considered to be a future promise to pay a debt, rather than a check in its own right. This technicality causes the post-dated check to remain outside the scope of bad check laws. The post-dated check is not considered to deprive a payee of goods or services, which is the definition of the crime associated with bad checks.
Below are the civil and criminal penalties for writing a bad check in New Hampshire under TITLE LV – PROCEEDINGS IN SPECIAL CASES, CHAPTER 544-B CIVIL LIABILITY FOR BAD CHECKS, 544-B:1 Civil Penalties for Bad Checks.
If the amount of the check, together with all costs and protest fees, is not paid to the person to whom it was due, within 14 days after received notice that the payment was refused then the defendant may face the following civil and criminal actions:
Civil Penalties: Amount due, interest, court costs, reasonable costs of collection, and $10 per day (maximum is $500).
Criminal Penalties: Issuing a bad check in New Hampshire is a class A felony if the face amount of the check exceeds $1,000, A class B felony if the face amount of the check exceeds $500 but is not more than $1,000, A class A misdemeanor if the face amount of the check does not exceed $500 and the defendant has been convicted of a previous bad check offense within the last 12 months, all other cases are considered a class B misdemeanor.
For more information on bad check laws and for criminal and civil penalties in other states for writing bad checks, please read Bad Check Laws
Check with your state statutes for the most current information on New Hampshire bad check laws.
You may want to also read Getting A Checking Account While On The Chex System
Learn how to Prevent Overdraft And Bounced Check Fees
Although all information has been written in good faith and has been reviewed, please email us at [email protected] to report any inaccuracies.