Friday, August 14, 2009

Going After Bad Checks

The ExploreHoward blog says the HoCo school system has hired a collection agency to chase after people who pass bad checks for less than $300, which is apparently becoming a growing problem.

If you have insufficient funds, you'll also be charged a $35 fee.

The system receives more than 800 bad checks each year, according to school system Director of Finance Beverly Davis. About 90 percent of those checks are for small dollar amounts and are written to individual schools for everything from field trip fees to yearbooks to summer school tuition.

Here's how one school described the change to parents:

Effective immediately, a new policy about check payments has been put into place. When providing a check as a payment, you not only authorize the school system to process the payment, but you also authorize us to collect a fee of $35 from your account IF your payment is returned unpaid. A $35 fee is allowed by Maryland State Law and is charged as an electronic fund transfer.

Please be aware that a check payment authorizes us to use information from your check to make a one-time electronic fund transfer from your account OR to process your payment as a check transaction. To help us to process your payment, please include the following information on your check:

Full name
Street address
Phone number

Thank you for your cooperation!

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