I recently got a letter/summons to appear in court because I was being charged with a Class A misdemeanor in the state of Indiana. I immediately called the court to find out who was charging me. I had no recollection of writing a bad check to this place, as I have written many checks to them with no problem. I looked at my bank record and a few months ago a check did bounce. I didn't even realize it until now. I also noticed that this same place cashed two more checks after the one bounced. So my question is, should I get a lawyer? I was told by the court to go pay the check off at the place it was written to and then appear at court, and if I don't a warrant will be issued for my arrest. I have never been in trouble with the law and this is freaking me out a bit. I did not realize the check would bounce or I wouldn't have written it in the first place.
Here is what I am being charged with:
Sec. 5. (a) A person who knowingly or intentionally issues or
delivers a check, a draft, or an order on a credit institution for the
payment of or to acquire money or other property, knowing that it
will not be paid or honored by the credit institution upon presentment
in the usual course of business, commits check deception, a Class A
misdemeanor. However, the offense is a Class D felony if the amount
of the check, draft, or order is at least two thousand five hundred
dollars ($2,500) and the property acquired by the person was a motor
(b) An unpaid and dishonored check, a draft, or an order that has
the drawee's refusal to pay and reason printed, stamped, or written on
or attached to it constitutes prima facie evidence:
(1) that due presentment of it was made to the drawee for
payment and dishonor thereof; and
(2) that it properly was dishonored for the reason stated.
(c) The fact that a person issued or delivered a check, a draft, or
an order, payment of which was refused by the drawee, constitutes
prima facie evidence that the person knew that it would not be paid
or honored. In addition, evidence that a person had insufficient funds
in or no account with a drawee credit institution constitutes prima
facie evidence that the person knew that the check, draft, or order
would not be paid or honored.
(d) The following two (2) items constitute prima facie evidence
of the identity of the maker of a check, draft, or order if at the time
of its acceptance they are obtained and recorded, either on the check,
draft, or order itself or on file, by the payee:
(1) Name and residence, business, or mailing address of the
(2) Motor vehicle operator's license number, Social Security
number, home telephone number, or place of employment of the
(e) It is a defense under subsection (a) if a person who:
(1) has an account with a credit institution but does not have
sufficient funds in that account; and
(2) issues or delivers a check, a draft, or an order for payment
on that credit institution;
pays the payee or holder the amount due, together with protest fees
and any service fee or charge, which may not exceed the greater of
twenty-seven dollars and fifty cents ($27.50) or five percent (5%)
(but not more than two hundred fifty dollars ($250)) of the amount
due, that may be charged by the payee or holder, within ten (10) days
after the date of mailing by the payee or holder of notice to the
person that the check, draft, or order has not been paid by the credit
institution. Notice sent in the manner set forth in IC 26-2-7-3
constitutes notice to the person that the check, draft, or order has not
been paid by the credit institution. The payee or holder of a check,
draft, or order that has been dishonored incurs no civil or criminal
liability for sending notice under this subsection.
(f) A person does not commit a crime under subsection (a) when:
(1) the payee or holder knows that the person has insufficient
funds to ensure payment or that the check, draft, or order is
(2) insufficiency of funds or credit results from an adjustment
to the person's account by the credit institution without notice
to the person.
As added by Acts 1978, P.L.144, SEC.6. Amended by Acts 1981,
P.L.303, SEC.1; P.L.268-1983, SEC.2; P.L.328-1983, SEC.1;
P.L.298-1989, SEC.1; P.L.42-1993, SEC.96; P.L.300-1995, SEC.1;
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