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Altered Government Checks

Sometimes criminals attempt to alter the name of the payee on a government check to correspond to their identification. Or they may alter the amount of a check to raise its value. If legitimate payees alter the amount on a government check, they forfeit the entire original amount of the check and are subject to criminal prosecution.

Government checks are never issued with corrections. If these are present, the check has been altered. Things to watch for include:
  • Erasures, strikeovers or pen-and-ink corrections

  • Bleaching or other color changes around letters or numbers

  • Uneven spacing or misalignment of type

  • Compare the amount of the check with the reason for which it was drawn. For instance, a normal Social Security annuity check would not be issued for thousands of dollars.

Altered Government Checks   Altered Government Checks

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