Attorney's Office FAQs

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What can I do if I received a worthless check?

Merchants or citizens who have received worthless checks can turn them in to the City Attorney's Office for prosecution.  The check must meet the following criteria:

  • It must be at least $30 and no more than $2,500.
  • It must have been either written or received in the City of Janesville.
  • It must returned and marked by the bank as any of the following:
    •     Non-Sufficient Funds
    •     Account Closed
    •     Return/Refer to Maker
    •     No Account Found
    •     Account Not on File
  • We cannot prosecute "Stop Payment" checks.  For questions please call the City Attorney's Office.
  • It must have been written within the past two (2) years.
  • You will need to bring in a photocopy of the front and back of the check and complete an affidavit stating that you have made an attempt to collect on this check without success.  Please bring a photo ID so that your affidavit may be notarized.  The affidavit form is available on this website under the Worthless Check tab. 
  • If the check is satisfied by the issuer, you must notify the City Attorney's Office immediately.
  • Checks over $2,500 may be referred to the Rock County District Attorney's Office at the Rock County Courthouse.
  • Forged checks may be referred to the Janesville Police Department.

I have paid off my worthless check.  What happens now?

If you have received a complaint letter from the City Attorney's Office, you need to bring in your proof of payment or make sure that the merchant notifies our office of your payment.  It is best to bring in the proof of payment to the City Attorney's Office.  A money order receipt is NOT PROOF OF PAYMENT.  Satisfying the check does not guarantee that you will not be prosecuted for a violation of Janesville's Worthless Check Ordinance.  Paying off the check does not guarantee that the matter will not be prosecuted. 

If the check is not paid and proof is not received within five (5) days of issuance, a summons may still be served.  If the summons is in the process of being drafted, signed, or served, the violation may still be prosecuted.  If you have been served with a summons, you should appear in court with proof of payment.

Once the summons is served, the penalties for this violation may be reduced but not dismissed.  The reduction will be based upon the facts and circumstances.  It is in your best interest to pay the merchant as soon as you are notified that your check has been turned in to our office for prosecution.  If you have received any letter from the City Attorney's Office or papers from the Court, you need to ensure that you follow through and appear in court.

The procedures may change from time to time so make certain you follow through with any document you receive from the City Attorney's Office.  Failure to do so may have unanticipated consequences.