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Deborah Edmondson
Deborah Edmondson, Central Desktop
Partner, VP Marketing
Tel: 843-368-2483

Worthless Check Unit


We at the Mission Resources Group constantly look for good ideas that will help Lowcountry businesses improve their operations. So, I’m glad to report that I recently learned about the 14th Circuit Solicitor’s Office Worthless Check Unit at the Bluffton Networking Group forum conducted monthly by the Beaufort Regional Chamber of Commerce. This valuable program provides a great example of how government can play a useful role assisting business without becoming overly intrusive. The program works. It’s free and self-sustaining via costs recovered by offenders.


Solicitor Duffie Stone spoke and did a nice job introducing and explaining the free program, which helps businesses and individuals collect bad checks and prosecutes the check kiters. 


Businesses will find the program very easy to use. When a bank returns a check for NSF, the business fills out a very basic form and sends the form with the attached bad check to the Worthless Check Unit, and they take it from there. The Unit contacts the check writer and collects and disburses restitution to the business that accepted the check. It takes about 60 days and has about an 80% success rate. If the Unit can’t get restitution, they prosecute. They’ve recovered more than $350,000 in the two years that the program has operated in the 14th Circuit counties.


Because the Unit handles all the dirty work, the business doesn’t have to chase down and confront the check writer, wasting valuable time and taking the chance of alienating a customer.


One critical point that Solicitor Stone several times reinforced… Business owners should NEVER accept partial payment when collecting on a bad check, because that will make it impossible for the Unit to pursue collection and restitution. In fact, once the business submits a check to the Unit, the business should refer all contacts with the check writer to the Unit.


It’s nice to see our local government effectively working with and for small business. And, it’s nice to see the Chamber working with the Solicitor’s Office to get the word out to local businesses.


Contact the Worthless Check Unit at (843) 255-5880 for more information, a useful brochure that explains the program and to get the submission form that starts the process.


Submitted by:

Paul Jacobson, President

Mission Resources Group  

Category: Productivity