Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals
Artists doing shows in the Twin Cities Area - don't take a check from a sweet little old lady named Lynn Baker-Handelman-Seigel (just remember 3 hyphenated names). I live in Florida and after spending considerably more time on it than the amount was worth, have found that I can't attempt to collect on it without returning to Minnesota and taking her to conciliation court, where the filing fee is far higher than the amount of the check. I had been under the impression that the States Attorney or someone would prosecute for a bad check but after talking to numerous people in the States Attorney and court systems, have found out that it's not so!
I may have to change my policy and not take checks at all from out of state shows. I have been doing it for years though and this is the only problem I haven't been able to resolve. It wasn't an accidental overdraft, it was a check written on a closed account.
Thanks for the heads up! I have a show in Minneapolis,MN this weekend.
Thanks for the heads-up. I have a show this weekend in MN. But I have changed my policy last year to no longer accept any checks from anyone. Cash or CC only. Burned 2x is 1 too many.
After being burned a couple of times with checks I no longer take them at all and I've never lost a sale because of it. If they have a checking account they should have a debit card.
*sigh* I was hit by her at Uptown. Just got the check returned "stopped payment." Also just realized that 2 of my friends got bad checks by her last year (but hadn't remembered when I went this year). This woman should be arrested. Yes, I remember her, she was VERY nice and innocent seeming. Unbelievable.
I have been accepting checks for years with no problem. Guess I'll be changing my policy.
Thanks for this, Robin. I am amazed that several people here have been burned by her! Small world.
Not sure if this will happen in Minnesota but I do remember taking bad checks in Florida and filing (don't believe there was a fee) with the police there. One happy day my bad check writer was caught for a traffic violation and they found our report and we got the money.
Thanks Connie - knowing that she gets around, I think it's worth my spending some more time on it to try to keep it from happening to anyone else. I'll make some more calls to Minnesota next week.
Melissa - please contact me - maybe we can get together and get a letter to the states attorney and get them to take it more seriously, considering that it's a repeat offense. firstname.lastname@example.org
I wonder if it's valid to get the art show producers in the Twin Cities area to circulate a flyer with the woman's name - to try to keep it from happening to anyone else? Sounds like it's just a game to her.
I've participated in shows where the names of bad check writers were circulated through the show and it was a great favor to have that info. Absolutely I'd contact the show directors an give them the information. Most of them will be pleased to provide this service to their exhibitors.
You want to file a complaint with the County Attorney General's office where the show was held not the State AG. If you all get together and file the separate claims and send them in one envelope and ask that she persecuted for fraud. If she is writing checks on a closed account AND there are multiple claimants on against her on that account then it is pretty clear to the AG that she did this in a premeditated manner and that constitutes fraud. A complaint from an individual results in you being told that this is a civil matter but proof of multiple bad checks, especially in a temporary venue like an art festival may well result in a warrant for her arrest. Just the threat of filing this complaint got a store to pay me with a cashier's check sent overnight!
A phone call to the County AG's office will get you good advice on how to proceed.
There is also something about the UCC (Universal Commercial Code?), maybe a federal law, that requires police dept. to issue a warrant also. My memory is very foggy on the details of this. Perhaps someone else here knows more about it.
She belongs to Temple Israel. Perhaps one of her rabbis could have a heartfelt discussion with her.
I know other members of Temple Israel and will ask if any of them know her personally. Sometimes the knowledge that one's bad behavior is no longer hidden can make a difference.