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  1. #1
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    Default Verifying ID of Check Writer

    I've given up hope of being able to resolve a bad check I received in 9/2006 on my own so I resigned myself to going through the PA Delaware County Bad Check Restitution Program. One of the things the paperwork I need to send in asks is how I verified the ID of the check writer (ie - drivers' license, photo ID, other, etc). I of course did none of this but am sending eveything in to the program hoping for the best but expecting to be shot down.

    How many of you get the check writer to provide a photo ID along with their check for verification? I know now that I need to do this.

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  2. #2
    James Duffin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Do you have his/her signature on your contract? Maybe you could use that for verification.


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Nick,

    Ever heard the old say. "In God We Trust, but all others pay cash"

    That would be nice if we always received cash but we don't.

    In todays society with the low lifes we have that don't think a thing about writting out a bad check or using someone else credit card, we have to ask for identification nowadays.

    I get upset now when I use my credit card and no one asks for ID. Thats because we're all in a rush and it slows down the movement of the lines in the stores, so now ID is a thing of the past I think.

    But back to your dilema, I think asking for ID on checks is a have to.

    Heck, I have recently started even shooting a picture of the clients car and license plate when there not looking just to have a back up if I need to trace them down. Actually I have already tracked someone down just using their license plate to get their address because the one on the check was bogus.

    Maybe we could start carrying around one of the smaller ink pads and start asking for a fingerprint on their checks now like some of the banks do when you cash a check.


  4. #4
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Rick,

    I have started doing the same thing with shooting a pic of the license plate. I've even tried to work in a picture of the client into the photo somewhere in the home.

    The question of how to verify this individual, now becomes moot.
    (still holding a $445.00 check after 3 years).

    Rich


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    If you have their signature on the contract you can file a small claims suit agaisnt them.

    There was another similar thread where I explained my routine for this in detail... In 4 years I've never been burned for a job but I've had to threaten suit agaisnt about a dozen people.

    Send a certified 10-day demand letter with a copy of the contract enclosed. 95% of the people pay once I do that because they realize if it goes to court they have no defense... they signed the contract and didn't pay.... plain and simple.

    If you get one that still won't pay just file a small claims suit. If they show up they really have no defense... if they don't show up you automatically win and get all your costs plus a prevailing fee (all areas are different as to how much, if any, that you get - mine is $75 I think). This is in addition to all filing costs, service fees, etc. Make sure and tell them you will seek these costs in the demand letter. I've heard that a judge could deny you these costs if you don't tell them they may have to pay them.

    I learned this from a friend I used to work with. He does PI work, collections and information searches. The court system (smalll claims espcially) is really easy once you learn your way around.

    When I get a bad check I always give the people a chance to make good on it without charging them anymore than it cost me through my bank... when they ignore me they pay for it in the end.

    The system is in place to help you in these instances, not get in your way. I almost get a little excited when someone tries to stiff my company for a job.


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    if they don't show up you automatically win and get all your costs...
    Well, yes and no.

    All you really get is a judgement against the other party. They still can ignore the judgement and never pay you the amount.
    Ask me how I know. !


  7. #7
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Sometimes education is expensive without much value. It never feels good being cheated, but we all eventually get over it. I have a judgement against a Client and don't ever expect to see it. I know where he is living (he didn't buy that house), and could have him arrested. I haven't. I could report the judgement to his credit report. I may, but I haven't.

    I refuse to let the few bad guys in life make me work harder to live a simple life. I've had two dead beats in over 4000 jobs. I won't let them change how I treat everyone else. If I do, they win.

    If you know how to contact the person, Nick, it may make you feel better just to go see him and tell him exactly what you think of him. Do it in public if possible.

    Okay, now that I got that off my chest, you could also find his car and do damage just under what you imagine his deductible to be. Wait until you see it repaired and do it again.

    Either way, you'll feel better. I know.

    The only reason some people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory.
    - Paul Fix

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Having taken someone to court for non payment, I can say it is time consuming and may not be worth the time and effort.

    Thom,
    I hope you are joking about doing damage to a car (I have a feeling you're not). Sounds like a good way to end up on the wrong end of a lawsuit or maybe a spot in the back seat of a police car.

    I have been blessed with very few collection problems over the years. I guess the biggest problem could be from out of town (State) clients that sign the contract by fax or e-mail, and mail a check.

    Taking credit cards has taken some of those worries away, but of course there is a cost associated with that.
    JF


  9. #9
    James Duffin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    I'm at the final stage of the small claim process for a bad check I got in January. I sent the two certified letters which were not picked up up. Then I went to small claims court and he did not show so I won $835 plus court cost for a $300 check. If he does not pay in 10 days then the next step is to file with the court to have some of his property seized to be sold to pay me. I am going to file these papers tomorrow. Don't know what will happen next but I guess I'll see.


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    All this pertains to my area so yours may be different....

    Once you get a judgement there any number of things you can do. I usually just sit on them and make 9% per year... not a bad rate of return these days. I also do what's called transcript the judgement which attaches it to their credit report and to the property they own. The house can't sell and they will likely not be granted any credit until they pay you. Getting calls at 830 at night from a past client sitting in a car dealership is just priceless....

    You can also garnish their checking account or their paycheck from a place of work... Most of the stuff is too time consuming so I just wait for them to come to me. They have to someday... especially if it's attached to a real piece of property... even if they die you'll still get the $$.


  11. #11
    Joseph P. Hagarty's Avatar
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    I've given up hope of being able to resolve a bad check I received in 9/2006 on my own so I resigned myself to going through the PA Delaware County Bad Check Restitution Program. One of the things the paperwork I need to send in asks is how I verified the ID of the check writer (ie - drivers' license, photo ID, other, etc). I of course did none of this but am sending eveything in to the program hoping for the best but expecting to be shot down.

    How many of you get the check writer to provide a photo ID along with their check for verification? I know now that I need to do this.
    A Bad Check is a Bad Check.

    Does not verifying an Address by a means of ID Negate the Criminal Intent to defraud by an Individual in the deliberate passing of a Bad Check? (Theft of Service)

    NO.............

    Send the paperwork in and follow up with the DA in 1 Week to verify his Action (Inaction) on this matter with update and/or explanation required.


  12. #12
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Quote Originally Posted by Joseph P. Hagarty View Post
    A Bad Check is a Bad Check.

    Does not verifying an Address by a means of ID Negate the Criminal Intent to defraud by an Individual in the deliberate passing of a Bad Check? (Theft of Service)

    NO.............

    Send the paperwork in and follow up with the DA in 1 Week to verify his Action (Inaction) on this matter with update and/or explanation required.
    The DA's in my area are so over run with high dollar ID theft and financial fraud that one bad check isn't even a blip on their radar. The sad reality is that banks don't even bother to try the criminal route (calling/filing with the DA). Their money is better spent going after people in civil court which is the route I described above.

    The system is not difficult... you just can't expect 'them' (meaning the DA's, public people, etc.) to do ANYTHING for you.... you have to do it on your own. The system is setup to be accessible to the people, meaning the common people like you and I. The problem is that most of us get intimidated or lazy and don't follow through. You don't need an attorney, you don't need to call the DA... you need to learn your rights and exercise them.

    The world is setup for us, the honest hard working people. You just have to sift through the BS sometimes to get what's rightfully yours....

    I know what I'm talking about... In 7 years of doing this (and other related things before) I've NEVER been stiffed for a fee. I currently have two judgements outstanding which are gaining 9% interest per year. I could find the people and garnish a bank account or paycheck anytime I want... but why? It's gaining 9%. It's like money in the bank. The property CANNOT sell without me getting my money.


  13. #13
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    I sent everything in and do intend to follow-up with the DA office as that is what the program recommends if you have not received your money within 60 days of filing. I'm with you Joe in that non-verification of ID should not trump criminal intent to defraud. But things just have not gone my way with this deadbeat so I'm not getting my hopes up. If payment comes through, I'll consider myself lucky.


  14. #14
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    UPDATE - Shockingly, I actually received a partial payment of the debt owed by the deadbeat I mentioned in the initial post in this thread. The check came in the mail yesterday from the county and the amount of the check is roughly 12% of the total amount owed. Since no other info came with the check, I called the Delaware County Bad Check Program and they confirmed the deadbeat is on a payment program and is due to make a total of 6 payments on the 10th of every month. Now he still needs to make all those installment payments for me to get all my money but at least the ball is rolling. I don't know if I'll see the total amount due to me but this is a start.


  15. #15
    David Banks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Good for you Nick. He probably got stopped for violation and got arrested for your bad check. You can probably use the cash during these slow times.


  16. #16
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Nick,

    The system works but it can be slow. Glad to hear the sucka finally is having to pay up. We had a burgulary once years ago and the guy was caught and had to make such payments (restitution) as you mentioned. He paid us every dime of the value of the stuff he stole, but took him 3 years to do so.

    As far as other deadbeats I went this past weekend to Norstrom's dept store and tracked down a lady who owed me 500.

    She had decided to back out of buying a house after the inspection and decided she didn't owe me or anyone. She cancelled payment on my check.

    Rick don't play that way.

    I traced her auto tag number with the help of a friend and also found out where she worked. I now try and take a picture of the clients car tag if they show up just for these types of things. They never suspect because I act like I'm taking a pic of something on the exterior of the home.

    I walked right up to the counter at her job with her cancelled check and when she asked if she could help me I said "Yeah, you could make this check good for me."

    The look on her face was priceless.

    A couple of her co-workers asked what was going on and I told them that she had stiffed me after I completed a inspection for her. They blasted her also and she went down to a ATM in the mall and got my money. I thought maybe the store security would run me off, but he just smiled and walked off.

    rick


  17. #17
    David Banks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Rick. I did the same thing for the Inspector I trained with. Walked right into restaurant where she worked and confronted her. Things like that do not bother me when you know you are in the right.


  18. #18
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Must be the times, I just collected on an inspection last month that was from a year and a half ago.
    This was an out of state customer and I billed through the local title company.
    (This WAS a common practice for me before I relocated and I never had a problem getting my money.)
    Long story short, the title co. dropped the ball and the customer kept ignoring my letters and certified letters were never claimed.
    Fortunately, this was only about a mile form my house and I made up my mind to catch him in person.
    I finally caught them at home after half a dozen attempts and he had the deer in the headlights look when I hold up a copy of the report with the glamor shot on the front page and told him I was there to settle up.
    He writes a check and I deposit it the same day.
    I find it is hard for people to ignore you when you are looking them in the eyeballs.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Luttrall View Post
    He writes a check and I deposit it the same day.
    I find it is hard for people to ignore you when you are looking them in the eyeballs.
    Jim,

    I would have took it to the Bank it was Drawn on (paid the non-customer fee HOW CAN YOU CHARGE A FEE TO CASH YOUR OWN INSTRUMENT!

    Cash in hand.

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Yeah, I thought of that, but since it is a check made out to a company, my understanding is the banks won't cash without an account in the companies name, which leaves me back at the same place.
    Bottom line is I got the money.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Jim,

    I've been told by BofA and Chase that any check made out to a business name has to be deposited into an account and cannot be cashed per new banking guidelines.

    It doesn't matter if you have an account on the bank the client check is drawn upon, it still has to be deposited.

    rick


  22. #22
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hurst View Post
    Jim,

    I've been told by BofA and Chase that any check made out to a business name has to be deposited into an account and cannot be cashed per new banking guidelines.

    It doesn't matter if you have an account on the bank the client check is drawn upon, it still has to be deposited.

    rick
    I was always told it was that way, even years ago, but ...

    That does not stop you from (say you have an account with B of A and they do too) asking them to verify the funds in the other account and to put a hold on those funds. They have done that in the past for me, and then that night the check I deposited clears (regardless of how many other came in after that) and the money is now in my account - basically the same as cashing the check. If you try to hold the funds and the funds are not there, well ...

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Jerry,

    On really large checks drawn on other banks, I've asked the bank on the check to issue me a cashiers check to my company name so I can deposit it into my business account at another bank.

    The reason doing so is to keep the client from possibly changing their mind once they get the report and stop payment on it thinking they are not paying out any money on a house their not buying.

    I think we have all seen this happen before.


  24. #24
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    YES!!! The mail came today with a check from the county DA Bad Check Program for the full outstanding amount owed to me by the deadbeat. It only took 1.5 years but I finally collected. Just in time to buy a bunch of green beer for St. Patty's Day.

    SWEET VICTORY IS MINE!!! DOWN WITH THE DEADBEATS.......DOWN WITH THE DEADBEATS!!!!!


  25. #25
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    Default Re: Verifying ID of Check Writer

    Congrats Nick!


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