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Dealing with Theft and Counterfeit Presentment

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Question: 
Our customer left her purse in a hotel room and evidently someone came in while she was gone. Two checks came through her account with our routing number and her account number, but everything else is fraudulent. I sent a letter to the bank of first deposit, but they deny paying because of the counterfeit law that I must return by midnight after the banking day following presentment. Since the check itself is counterfeit, can I return through FRB as a draft check? If not, do I have other recourses?
Answer: 

A counterfeit check is treated the same as a check on which your depositor's signature is forged: the midnight deadline applies. The Fed's requirements for returning remotely created checks are specific and refer to the definition of such checks in Regulation CC, which your counterfeit doesn't meet. I'm afraid that, unless you are able somehow to determine who counterfeited those checks, your bank is out the money.

First published on BankersOnline.com 10/04/10

First published on 10/04/2010

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