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Edelman Combs Latturner & Goodwin, LLC Edelman Combs Latturner & Goodwin, LLC
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Q. I have a friend that received a text about a job. They sent her a check that she was supposed to deposit into her bank. They told her to withdraw part of the money and wire it back to some other person so she can receive her working materials. I feel like this is a scam.

A. Assume that it is a scam. A common scam is to send a victim a check and ask them to deposit it and send some of the proceeds to someone connected with the perpetrator. The check proves counterfeit, altered, etc.

There is no legitimate reason why a private individual or employee should be asked to do this by a legitimate company.

Under the Uniform Commercial Code, a person who deposits a check warrants to the bank that it is valid and good. If it isn't, they bear the loss. Many people contact us complaining that the bank accepted the check and made funds available. A bank does not make any representation about the validity of a check by allowing it to be deposited. Funds are required to be made available by federal law within specified periods of time. That funds have been made available does not mean that the depositor is not liable.

Any such offers should be reported to law enforcement -- the Federal Trade Commission, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and state Attorney General.

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