Code of Virginia

Code of Virginia
Title 18.2. Crimes and Offenses Generally
11/14/2019

Article 4. Bad Check Law.

§ 18.2-181. Issuing bad checks, etc., larceny.

Any person who, with intent to defraud, shall make or draw or utter or deliver any check, draft, or order for the payment of money, upon any bank, banking institution, trust company, or other depository, knowing, at the time of such making, drawing, uttering or delivering, that the maker or drawer has not sufficient funds in, or credit with, such bank, banking institution, trust company, or other depository, for the payment of such check, draft or order, although no express representation is made in reference thereto, shall be guilty of larceny; and, if this check, draft, or order has a represented value of $500 or more, such person shall be guilty of a Class 6 felony. In cases in which such value is less than $500, the person shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

The word "credit" as used herein, shall be construed to mean any arrangement or understanding with the bank, trust company, or other depository for the payment of such check, draft or order.

Any person making, drawing, uttering or delivering any such check, draft or order in payment as a present consideration for goods or services for the purposes set out in this section shall be guilty as provided herein.

Code 1950, § 6.1-115; 1966, c. 584; 1975, cc. 14, 15; 1978, c. 791; 1981, c. 230; 2018, cc. 764, 765.

§ 18.2-181.1. Issuance of bad checks.

It shall be a Class 6 felony for any person, within a period of 90 days, to issue two or more checks, drafts or orders for the payment of money in violation of § 18.2-181 that have an aggregate represented value of $500 or more and that (i) are drawn upon the same account of any bank, banking institution, trust company or other depository and (ii) are made payable to the same person, firm or corporation.

1988, c. 496; 2018, cc. 764, 765.

§ 18.2-182. Issuing bad checks on behalf of business firm or corporation in payment of wages; penalty.

Any person who shall make, draw, or utter, or deliver any check, draft, or order for the payment of money, upon any bank, banking institution, trust company or other depository on behalf of any business firm or corporation, for the purpose of paying wages to any employee of such firm or corporation, or for the purpose of paying for any labor performed by any person for such firm or corporation, knowing, at the time of such making, drawing, uttering or delivering, that the account upon which such check, draft or order is drawn has not sufficient funds, or credit with, such bank, banking institution, trust company or other depository, for the payment of such check, draft or order, although no express representation is made in reference thereto, shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor; except that if this check, draft, or order has a represented value of $500 or more, such person shall be guilty of a Class 6 felony.

The word "credit," as used herein, shall be construed to mean any arrangement or understanding with the bank, banking institution, trust company, or other depository for the payment of such check, draft or order.

In addition to the criminal penalty set forth herein, such person shall be personally liable in any civil action brought upon such check, draft or order.

Code 1950, § 6.1-116; 1966, c. 584; 1975, cc. 14, 15; 2005, c. 598; 2018, cc. 764, 765.

§ 18.2-182.1. Issuing bad checks in payment of taxes.

Any person who shall make, draw, utter, or deliver two or more checks, drafts, or orders within a period of ninety days which have an aggregate represented value of $1,000 or more, for the payment of money upon any bank, banking institution, trust company, or other depository on behalf of any taxpayer for the payment of any state tax under § 58.1-486 or § 58.1-637, knowing, at the time of such making, drawing, uttering, or delivering, that the account upon which such check, draft, or order is drawn has not sufficient funds or credit with such bank, banking institution, trust company, or other depository for the payment of such check, draft, or order, although no express representation is made in reference thereto, shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

The word "credit," as used herein, means any arrangement or understanding with the bank, banking institution, trust company, or other depository for the payment of such check, draft, or order.

1992, c. 763.

§ 18.2-183. Issuance of bad check prima facie evidence of intent and knowledge; notice by certified or registered mail.

In any prosecution or action under the preceding sections, the making or drawing or uttering or delivery of a check, draft, or order, payment of which is refused by the drawee because of lack of funds or credit shall be prima facie evidence of intent to defraud or of knowledge of insufficient funds in, or credit with, such bank, banking institution, trust company or other depository unless such maker or drawer, or someone for him, shall have paid the holder thereof the amount due thereon, together with interest, and protest fees (if any), within five days after receiving written notice that such check, draft, or order has not been paid to the holder thereof. Notice mailed by certified or registered mail, evidenced by return receipt, to the last known address of the maker or drawer shall be deemed sufficient and equivalent to notice having been received by the maker or drawer.

If such check, draft or order shows on its face a printed or written address, home, office, or otherwise, of the maker or drawer, then the foregoing notice, when sent by certified or registered mail to such address, with or without return receipt requested, shall be deemed sufficient and equivalent to notice having been received by the maker or drawer, whether such notice shall be returned undelivered or not.

When a check is drawn on a bank in which the maker or drawer has no account, it shall be presumed that such check was issued with intent to defraud, and the five-day notice set forth above shall not be required in such case.

Code 1950, § 6.1-117; 1966, c. 584; 1975, cc. 14, 15.

§ 18.2-184. Presumption as to notation attached to check, draft or order.

In any prosecution or action under the preceding sections, any notation attached to or stamped upon a check, draft or order which is refused by the drawee because of lack of funds or credit, bearing the terms "not sufficient funds," "uncollected funds," "account closed," or "no account in this name," or words of similar import, shall be prima facie evidence that such notation is true and correct.

Code 1950, § 6.1-117.1; 1970, c. 695; 1974, c. 322; 1975, cc. 14, 15.

§ 18.2-185. Evidence and presumptions in malicious prosecution actions after issuance of bad check.

In any civil action growing out of an arrest under § 18.2-181 or § 18.2-182, no evidence of statements or representations as to the status of the check, draft, order or deposit involved, or of any collateral agreement with reference to the check, draft, or order, shall be admissible unless such statements, or representations, or collateral agreement, be written upon the instrument at the time it is given by the drawer.

If payment of any check, draft, or order for the payment of money be refused by the bank, banking institution, trust company or other depository upon which such instrument is drawn, and the person who drew or uttered such instrument be arrested or prosecuted under the provisions of § 18.2-181 or § 18.2-182, for failure or refusal to pay such instrument, the one who arrested or caused such person to be arrested and prosecuted, or either, shall be conclusively deemed to have acted with reasonable or probable cause in any suit for damages that may be brought by the person who drew or uttered such instrument, if the one who arrested or caused such person to be arrested and prosecuted, or either, shall have, before doing so, presented or caused such instrument to be presented to the depository on which it was drawn where it was refused, and then waited five days after notice, as provided in § 18.2-183, without the amount due under the provisions of such instrument being paid.

Code 1950, § 6.1-118; 1966, c. 584; 1975, cc. 14, 15.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of these sections may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.

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