There is nothing illegal about writing a postdated check.  Writing and sending postdated checks is a fairly common practice however, it is a practice that should be avoided in order to steer clear of any potential for liability.  Liability with a postdated check will generally not arise simply due to the date on the check but may surface should the check not clear the bank as scheduled by the check writer.

Problems with writing a postdated check generally surface if the check is deposited or cashed prior to the date of the check and there are insufficient funds in the account at that time to cover the check.  The check writer will then be responsible to make good on the payment, pay the fees charged by their bank for having either an overdrawn account or a returned item fee and may also be responsible for any fees incurred by the payee if their deposit is retuned by their bank.

The reason why the postdated check may clear before the future date placed on the check is the Uniform Commercial Code adopted by most states allows a bank to process and honor a check regardless of the date.  If an account holder postdates a check, and the payee cashes the check prior to that date, this is the date the funds will be taken from their account regardless of the date on the check.  Unless the bank is notified in advance about a specific check, the bank will process the check without being obligated to verify its date.

State laws regarding passing bad checks generally makes it a crime to intentionally write a worthless check with the intent to defraud a person or business of goods or services.  Since the writer of a postdated check is usually not doing this to intentionally defraud the recipient of the check, postdating a check is not a crime.

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