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What Can You Do About Bounced Checks?

There are some businesses that still accept checks but a lot of them have stopped accepting them because the fees associated with them can be extremely high. Many businesses find that the fees for bounced checks can make it difficult for you to even accept checks from your customers. If you are unable to collect the money from your customers because they are always writing checks that bounce, it won't be long before you start struggling financially. It is important that you create a program for your company that tells your employees how to deal with bounced checks. Having a returned check policy will allow you to avoid accepting checks from certain customers but it will also prevent you from having to deal with bounced checks.

Post your collection policy and inform the customers up front when they are paying with a check. They need to be informed of the return check fee along with the procedure your company will follow if they bounce a check.

Every business needs to have a collection agency that they can work with in order to help them collect on bounced checks. Typically the collection agency will deal with everything for you, making it easy for you to collect your funds and avoid the frustration of dealing with customers on the phone as well as losing money for several weeks or possibly months.

What are some of the ways you can avoid dealing with bounced checks? It is important to look at the information on the check, like the address. It may be a smart idea to consider only accepting checks that are local. Out of state checks take longer to process and it is concerning that the checks could be fraudulent. A lot of small business owners will only accept checks that are written in their presence and they will also include the driver's license number on the check in order to check on the person that is writing the check. Get their phone number as well in case you need to contact them about their check.

If a check does bounce from your customers, you have to call them. Sometimes checks bounce by mistake and your customers can fix it right away. If it was not an accident, you are going to need to charge them a penalty along with getting the money on the phone right then.

A great way to prevent check fraud is by subscribing to a service that will verify the check for you. Telecheck is a popular service to use. If you do a lot of online transactions you can use PayPal as they have an eCheck service that also clears the check. PayPal is free to use and it's a great way to send and receive money from your customers.

Never take additional orders from a customer that has bounced a check. Only accept credit cards from them or cash to make sure you have the money. If there is a balance on their account, do not sell them anything until they pay it. Tell them of the balance right then and hold firm on getting payment before you sell them anything else.

Hire a collection agency to deal with all the check problems and collections. They can contact your customers and get the money from them for you. They can also make sure that these customers are unable to buy anything else by putting a freeze on their company account with your organization.

If you do have customers that refuse to pay, it may be necessary to take them to small claims court. This is never a fun process and it may be the only solution you have in order to avoid losing all the money that you have out in the accounts receivables.

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