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Bad Check Prosecution System - FAQ

When I put a new check into the system, do I have to enter it into several different ledgers?
No.   By entering the check information one time, BCPS maintains the data and makes it available for all  aspects of your reporting and tracking needs.

Will the software automatically calculate the prosecutorís fee, or do I have to key it?
The Prosecutor's collection fee is automatically calculated by the program.  You set up a table in the system control file which defines your fee structure and the system refers to it during check entry.  The fee can be a flat amount, or it can be a table based on the check amount. The fee is sometimes referred to as the State Fee, Prosecutor's fee, or office fee, among others.

Can the software automatically calculate a merchant fee (user fee) and include it in the amount to be collected?
Yes.  Just like the prosecutor fee, the merchant fee (aka users fee) is set up in a table and can be a flat amount or a sliding rate.   BCPS also has the ability to override the merchant fee if you need to collect a unique merchant fee for a particular payee.

Can I put more than one check on the letter we send to the check writer?
Yes.  BCPS will put up to 8 checks on a single letter to the defendant.  If the check writer has more than 8 checks in the batch of letters, they'll simply get 2 (or 3, or 4) letters, each with up to 8 checks listed.

What if we donít like the wording of your notice letter?  Do we have to pay you to change the letter?
No.   All "letters" that are generated by BCPS are set up as "merge" documents in either MS-Word (r) or WordPerfect (r).   We provide sample documents with the merge fields already inserted, but the actual wording of the letters is up to your discretion.  And, since they're word processing documents on your system, you can change them when and however you wish.

We collect money orders that are made payable to the merchants.  How does BCPS handle this?  Does it include a restitution letter to send to the merchant advising them that weíve made a collection? 
At the time payments are posted you will designate the payment type as Cash, Check, or Money Order.    There is a Restitution Letter merge with another word processing document that allows you to print a list of payments that you have received for each victim.  The list is pulled automatically based on the payment date range that you provide.

We collect cash and/or money orders that are made payable to our office.  We deposit the money into an account and then write disbursement checks to the merchants.   Will BCPS do this?
Of course.  If your office deposits all payments and then writes checks to the victims, we can do that too.    One nice feature is that when you write disbursement checks, each victim will only receive one check for everything you've collected,  not one check per payment.  The check stub will provide a detailed breakdown of what the check is for, but you'll only print one check per victim.

If a defendantís address changes, do I have to change it for every check?
Absolutely not.  You'll only put the defendant's name/address into the system once,  then each check you have for that defendant is "attached" to that defendant record.  Thus, if you have to change his address (or SSN, DOB, D/L#, etc.) you only change it once.

How hard is it to find out how much a defendant owes?
Very simple.   The very first screen of the defendant inquiry shows the defendant name, address, and balance.  As you drill down and get more specifics, you'll begin to see the balance for individual checks, but the defendant's total balance is also always on the screen.

Can I get a list of all of the checks that we have on a specific defendant?  How hard is it to get?
The defendant inquiry is driven by the name, Date of Birth, Driver's License number, or Social Security number.  Once you find the defendant you're looking for, you've got his list of checks.   You can easily scroll through his/her checks on the screen.  Want the list printed?  Hit the F6 key and it prints.

Sometimes we get calls from merchants who know they brought us a check, but canít remember the name of the check writer.  Is there some way to find a check by the merchant name?
Much like the defendant inquiry we also have an inquiry by Payee.   The search is driven by the merchant (victim/payee) name.    Once you locate the payee you're after you'll see a list of all the checks that they have presented to you, in alphabetical order by the defendant.  In other words, if Jack Duncan has passed 7 bad checks to the AppleMart, they would all be listed together.

What if we never receive payment from the defendant?  Can BCPS help me prepare the charging documents?
When you post a new group of checks into your system, you'll tell the system when they become eligible to prosecute.  For example, even though the law might say "10 days", you may choose to wait 15 days, just to give them a little more time to pay.  But, since the system does know when its time to file charges, it can produce a list telling you which checks you should be filing on.   From there, its a simple matter of you telling the system what type of charge to file (Misdemeanor, Felony, No-Account, etc.) and letting it run.  Once again, the actual charging documents are done in MS-Word or WordPerfect, so you determine the final format. 

What kinds of charging documents does BCPS produce?
We include sample documents for Misdemeanor, Felony, and No-Account, but in reality all  of the charging documents are user defined.    For example, some offices produce an Information and the warrant, while others only produce the Information and the court does the warrant.  This is all a matter of how your merge documents are set up.

When a defendant makes a payment, how hard is it to post?  Do I have to post it to the check file and put it on some kind of payment ledger?
Posting is done by locating the defendant in your files by entering the first part of his/her name, then picking them from an alphabetical list.   Once you have the defendant, you'll see a list of their outstanding checks, where you'll direct how the payment is to be distributed.  Once you post a payment the information becomes available throughout the system - no need to post it to another payment ledger.  

What if the defendant is making partial payments?  Can BCPS handle partial payments?
Because BCPS maintains separate balances on each check record there is no problem accepting partial payments.  In fact, the printed receipt will reflect the payment and  the outstanding balance, so the defendant will know exactly where they stand following their payment.

We have to keep track of the Prosecutor fee separate from what we collect for the merchant.  Any problems?
Absolutely not.   All prosecutor/state fees are tracked separately from the victim balances.  In fact, during the disbursement check writing process, we even write a check to your county treasurer for the amount of prosecutor fees collected.

My auditor is always on us about having sequentially numbered, non-duplicated receipts.  What does BCPS do to help me with receipts?
Every payment that is posted in BCPS is assigned a unique, sequentially numbered receipt.  Even if the receipt isn't printed.  As the receipt number is assigned it is also logged into a receipt history file, which can subsequently be reviewed and printed.   A report is available to list selected receipts, either by date or by receipt#.   Also - if you install our Court Ordered Restitution system is uses the same sequential receipt number file, so your history report would include all payments, whether from BCPS or COR.

What if I don't find a report in BCPS that gives me the information I want?
While we've tried to anticipate most common report requirements, the possibility exists that you'll need something we didn't plan for.  For example, you might want a report of say, "All checks that are over $50.00, written in the month of October, and the defendant name starts with the letter S"   Bad news.  We didn't plan for that one.  However, we try to be as helpful as possible, and if you have a need for something special, or just something that we've overlooked, we try to accommodate whenever we can.

What if I want to know more than what I can find on this website?
By all means, contact us by any of the methods listed below.   We can answer your specific questions or arrange a product demonstration if you'd like.

 
 

Dennis Jones & Associates
825 Country Club Drive
Camdenton, MO 65020

 

Phone:  (573) 346-3101
               800-862-7174
  Fax:    (573) 346-4988
email:  dennis@djonesassoc.com