Check Division

The Check Division of the District Attorney's Office is responsible for investigating and prosecuting the offense of “Theft by check”. It is one of the divisions at the District Attorney's Office that is able to take reports of criminal conduct directly from the victim of the crime. The Check Division conducts an investigation that ordinarily involves obtaining documents and analyzing them, and, as necessary, interviewing witnesses. If the case is one that involves checks, but cannot be prosecuted as a theft by check, the complainant will be referred to the police agency with jurisdiction of the case.

Is it a theft or a bad check?

Under penal code section 31.03 Theft, a person commits an offense if he unlawfully appropriates property or secures performance of a service from the owner by deception. The key under the law is that the owner must give the merchandise at the time the check writer renders the check. Furthermore, inducing a provider of services to provide services by giving the provider a check which the issuer knows will be dishonored by the bank qualifies as deception. Again, the key under the law is that the owner must provide the service at the time the check writer renders the check.

Please note that the following types of checks do not qualify under this criterion:

POST-DATED CHECKS:

If you willingly accepted a post-dated check in exchange for merchandise or a service, you extended credit to the check writer.

THIRD-PARTY CHECKS:

Those kinds of checks often prove to be impossible for us to establish which of the other parties involved possessed the intent to commit the theft.

CHECKS FOR DEBTS OWED:

In most cases checks given to pay pre-existing debts do not meet the requirements for a theft charge.

DRAFTS:

If you willingly accepted a draft for merchandise or a service, you have extended credit to the check writer.

How do I file a criminal complaint?

In order to file a check complaint with the Check Division of the Bexar County District Attorney's Office you must:

How can I minimize my business losses to bad checks?

Never accept a check without checking and writing down the ID of the person signing the check. Always be sure to compare the picture on the ID of the check writer to the person standing in front of you offering the check as payment. Never allow the check writer to tell you the ID number, always look at it yourself and record it carefully. Always obtain and verify a physical address for the check writer. If you file a complaint on the case with the District Attorney's Check Division, you will be required to swear that the person who stood before you was the same person whose ID number you recorded.

HIGH RISK CHECKS

You are safer if you avoid the checks listed above altogether.

How can I recover losses from checks that do not qualify for criminal filing?

You can attempt to recover losses suffered by contacting the Bexar County Dispute Resolution Center located in the Bexar County Justice Center, 300 Dolorosa St., suite 1102, San Antonio, Texas 78205-3009. You can email the center here.

For further information on how the Check Section can be of assistance to you, contact the District Attorney's Office at 210.335.2415

Have you received notice from the D.A.?

Individuals who have received notice of a hot check or feel they may have a check outstanding due to non-sufficient funds and/or account closed contact this office immediately at 210.335.2415 or make restitution on the 1st floor of the Paul Elizondo Tower, 101 W. Nueva, Rm. 110.2, San Antonio, Texas, between the hours of 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday. A drop box is available from 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM for money orders and cashier's checks only.