Can a payee be held civily or criminally responsible for a check returned to a check cashing facility?

Restaurant issues a non-payroll check to part-time employee for services rendered. Because it is the weekend and banks are closed, payee cashes check at a check cashing facility. Several days later, check is returned to check cashing facility marked “payment stopped”. Just a few days later, restaurant goes out of business.

Asked on December 6, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Virginia


Michael D. Siegel / Siegel & Siegel, P.C.

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

While there can be criminal liability for intentionally passing a bad check, under the circumstances you have posted, that did not happen here.  Thus, it is a civil case.  However, wages, even part time, can be the responsibility of the owner, even if the corporation is bankrupt.  Thus, in addition to suing, you should contact the State Department of Labor.

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