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CA forged signature on check sent to wrong place

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Hi there... I am writing this for a friend of mine.

She accidently switched checks when she was paying her bills. The small check that was suppose to go to the CA was accidently sent to another bill that is bigger. and the bigger payment was accidently sent to the CA. Follow me? LOl It's kind of hard to explain... So, the CA receives this BIG payment, and it's addressed to a completely different company has ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with them. CA is for medical, this payment was for a whole different field... Anyways, she checks her bank account and found out she was overdrawn because the large check was deposited (the big check she had agreed with the company to postdate it, very reliable place she wrote the check to). So she's freaking out and wondering how that happened. Come to find out, the CA actually forged the signature of the OTHER company but had the check deposited into their account. So now her and the other person the check should have gone to, who's name they forged have to sign affidavits stating they did not do this. Her question, is there any recourse she can take? This would be fraud and forgery would it not? I know CA's sometimes read this, so I really don't want to post the name of the company in here... She would appreciate any help she can get. Unfortunately, her account is negative and she won't get the money back until the "investigation" is done at the bank. But how wrong is THIS?
thanks for any information!

well, it is fraud, no question there. And forgery as well. She can press criminal charges, but the other company may need to press charges for forgery, since their name was the one that this CA forged...I am not sure about that as it may differ from state to state. The best thing I can recommend is this, in this order:

1--go to her bank and immediately dispute the charge, explaining what happened. Apparently she already did this, thats good--the dispute will also figure in later when she can go after the CA in question to pay any fees that result from their action.

2--contact the police, seriously, and file a criminal report. It may not do much good, since the CA might be in another state--in that case, contact the police where the CA is. It still might not do much good, but the report may help and certainly couldnt hurt.

3--contact the attorney general's office in the state where the CA is and file a formal complaint. She will have to provide documentation to them about this, and it sounds like that wont be a problem from what you've said thus far. But filing a complaint will prompt the AG's office to investigate, and they are most likely the agency that will do the most on this one.

She can also file complaint with the better business bureau, but in many cases that is actually a waste of time, and I suspect that this CA is probably not a BBB member anyways.

Sub: #1 posted on Tue, 08/12/2008 - 16:24

skydivr7673 skydivr7673
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No it is not fraud at all, and definately not criminal. AG will laugh. CA's receive payments en masse everyday that are made payable to a third parties. CA's have signatory rights , which means they can cash checks for third parties.

At most this is a clerical error. Call the CA.

Another thing...under banking law there is no such thing as a post dated check. Legally they can cash any check regardless of date. The only exception is a CA and how they handle post dates but that is under the fdcpa.

Sub: #2 posted on Tue, 08/12/2008 - 17:06

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Don't they have to have certain places they can sign for the 3rd party checks for? Or can they sign any and every check that they receive?

Sub: #3 posted on Tue, 08/12/2008 - 17:30


Come to find out, the CA actually forged the signature of the OTHER company but had the check deposited into their account.

OK, so the check was made out to the ABC Company, and the CA endorsed the check Joe Smith of ABC Company, and deposited into their account?

I believe that if a check is written out to a company, that legally in can only be deposited into an account that reads the same way.

Sub: #4 posted on Tue, 08/12/2008 - 19:09


I know they process many, many payments - and maybe they don't look at the payee when they're posting payments. But generally their bank should not have let them deposit the check if they weren't the payee. I know if I walk into my bank and try to cash someone else's check, they wouldn't do it.

Your friend should get copies of the front and back of the cancelled check. See how the CA actually endorsed the check. If they endorsed as the CA, then it is not forgery. Really it would just be a false endorsement. In that case, if the endorsement does not match the payee, then your friend should dispute that with the bank. The CA's bank should refund the money to her bank and issue a debit memo against the CA's account.

If the CA actually endorsed the check in the name of another company, then that is forgery. Either way, talk to a bank manager about getting the funds returned.

Sub: #5 posted on Tue, 08/12/2008 - 19:14

DebtCruncher DebtCruncher
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Do you really think anyone at the bank is actually looking at the checks?? Processing is now automated...they have machines now that read the amounts on the checks and encodes it....then it goes to another machine to sort and transmit. People are not looking at checks any longer
(My husband repairs these machines plus my mum used to be a data center manager for a large bank)

Any refund will more than likely be done as a refund check from the CA .

Sub: #6 posted on Tue, 08/12/2008 - 20:37

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Come to find out, the CA actually forged the signature of the OTHER company but had the check deposited into their account. So now her and the other person the check should have gone to, who's name they forged have to sign affidavits stating they did not do this.

this is forgery, no doubt when you read that part

Sub: #7 posted on Tue, 08/12/2008 - 21:19


To me, this is a clear case of fraud on the part of the CA. If someone had to manually endorse that check, then they had to realize it did not belong to them.

And yes, due to automated check processing, most banks will not notice this when a large amount of checks are deposited into a company's account; however, when your friend raised the alarm at her bank, then her bank has a duty to investigate/resolve this issue. I'm sure if your friend contacted the CA asking for the money back, that was sent to them in error, she'd get about the same response as if she addressed this situation to a brick! So she needs to take this up with her bank.

Yes, you should tell your friend to contact their bank and let them know this check was improperly endorsed. Might be forgery, might not be; however, the CA knew the check didn't belong to them and they falsified a signature and deposited it regardless.

Your friend's bank should give her provisional credit while they conduct their investigation. She may need to ask for the bank's fraud department, though, as a front line bank rep. or teller might not "go the extra" mile to resolve this.

Sub: #8 posted on Wed, 08/13/2008 - 03:46

FloridaRon FloridaRon

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Thanks for the information. I'll pass it on. And yes, the CA KNEW the check was not for them. It was actually for her daycare. The CA signed the daycare centers name on the back of the check and deposited it in their account. There is NO way that they could have done that "accidently". The check for the CA was supposed to be like $50 and the daycare was about $300, but the daycare has an agreement not to cash until friday which was why she was surprised it had gone through. She has tried to contact the CA, but of course has gotten no where. I think she has the bank on it, but I'll tell her she should go to the branch manager to see about getting a credit on her account until this investigation is over. She is a single mom with NO help so this really caused a hardship. She knows it was her error in mixing up the checks, but never imagined this would happen.
Thanks for all the help!

Sub: #9 posted on Wed, 08/13/2008 - 04:31

lauramw71 lauramw71

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It would not hurt to file the police reports especially as evidence for your dispute with your bank but other than that I doubt it would go anywhere as a fraud case. I would make a formal complaint against that CA with their state AG though because if this CA has commited a bunch of acts similar to this one then the AG could use this as additional evidence. Your bank should give full credit within 24 hours of submitting the complaint. You should not have to wait 60 days for them to investigate to get the credit. Once they complete their investigation they will reissue the charge if they find in favor of the CA though.

Sub: #10 posted on Wed, 08/13/2008 - 09:02

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