Bad Check Program

Bad Check Education

Bad checks cause an unnecessary expense for everyone. Merchants and many other citizens in Coconino County lose thousands of dollars each year. The Bad Check Program, through the County Attorney's Office, provides a public service that allows for the collection of bad checks, and/or the prosecution of bad check writers.

Our Purpose

We are here to enforce the law for both organizations and individuals within Coconino County and collect restitution and a victim fee for those who have suffered a loss because of receiving a bad check. We also now offer a mandatory Bad Check Education Program for all check writers so they can receive the training necessary to prevent future offenses.


Our Bad Check Program Guidebook assists merchants and others in minimizing their losses due to bad checks. It explains specific procedures to use when accepting checks that will help reduce the number of bad checks received.

Tips for You

Certain types of checks are not handled by the Bad Check Program. Most checks that fit into the following categories may be pursued in a civil action, and you are advised to seek private legal counsel. Do not submit such checks to this office. For more information, refer to the Bad Check Program Guidebook, page 8.

How to Minimize Losses from Bad Checks

Follow these tips to minimize losses from bad checks:
  • Identification
    • Always ask to see the check writer's driver's license or state ID card.
    • Compare the signature on the ID to the signature on the check.
    • Make sure you are the one who writes the driver's license number on the check, not the check writer. This prevents a false number from being provided. Be sure to initial the entry.
  • No Identification
    • If they don't have a driver's license or state ID card, you should not accept the check.
    • There is no requirement for you to accept the check.
    • At worst, you lose a sale, but you do not lose merchandise and get stuck with a bad check.
    • If you have any doubts, don't accept the check. You are not required by law to accept checks.

When You Receive a Bad Check

The process is as easy as 1-2-3:
  1. Prepare a check intake form.
    Use one check intake form for each check you are submitting.
  2. Submit items to the Bad Check Program.
    Send or deliver the check intake form and original check or the original bank legal copy to:
    Bad Check Program
    Coconino County Attorney's Office
    110 E. Cherry Ave.
    Flagstaff, AZ 86001-4627
  3. Keep records.
    For your purposes, it is a good idea to keep copies of checks, forms, and any correspondence to and from the check writer. Once the check has been submitted to the Bad Check Program, it may be necessary to contact you for further information about the check and the check writer.
Note: Once a check has been submitted to the Bad Check Program, you are not to accept payment or partial payment on that check. The check writer must make payment directly to the Bad Check Program. If the check writer attempts to pay you directly, you will need to refer them to our office. Failure to do so will result in your being held responsible for the payment of any unpaid fees to our office.

Merchants & Business Owners

Get a Bad Check Writers or Identity Thieves poster to display in your place of business.

For More Information

Please contact the staff of the Bad Check Program with the information provided if you have any questions or would like to obtain additional information.