Is it illegal to put a stop payment on a post-dated check?

I gave my landlord post dated checks for the last 5 month of my lease. Unfortunately, my wife got ill and could no longer work. I had to move out 1 month prior to the end of the lease. I gave the last month’s rent at the begnning of lease. So I put a stop payment on the last 2 month’s checks. He is saying that is a felony and is threatening me by calling the sheriff. Is he correct?

Asked on May 31, 2012 under Criminal Law, Florida

Answers:

Kevin Bessant / Law Office of Kevin Bessant & Associates

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

A stop payment is different from a charge of check fraud or uttering and publishing. Check fraud exists when you present a check for payment knowing that you do not and will not have the funds to cover the amount of the check. A person who accepts a post dated check accepts it on their own will and accord. A stop payment is where you contact your bank (who will charge you) and request a stop payment of a check. Unless there was some form of misrepresentation, fraud, or false pretenses in your dealings with the checks, then I see no criminal liability.


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