The Turkish Parliament has recently adopted a legislation that
brings down penalties on bounced checks. Accordingly, contrary to
the former legislation the issuers of bounced checks will only be
subject to administrative fine rather than imprisonment.
During the years of high inflation and the several economic
crises in Turkey, the checks especially by textile and raw
materials sector have been preferred as the payment tool in Turkey.
The economic conditions and the sanctions of imprisonment during
the years that the former laws, Law No 5941 and Law No 3167 were in
effect, has required a new radical approach to check regime due to
many increasing social problems such of increase in prisons, booken
homes, etc. As a reality of patriarchal structure of Turkish
society and perception of "men make houses women make
homes", many women have been stuck in a situation of waiting
their men to be released from the prison.
The parliament has considered such a social reaction and handled
the check legislation and in contrary to the conventional
principles brought new approach to the check regime and proceed
complying with the principle of "No one shall be deprived of
his liberty merely on the ground of inability to fulfill a
contractual obligation." as defined in constitution. The new
law, Law no: 6273 has entered into force by being published in the
Official Gazette of 3 February 2012.
Accordingly, the banks now have the obligation to keep their
check account customers' records by Central Bank of Republic of
Turkey for ten years.
In addition the minimum payment obligation imposed to banks has
increased from TRY 600 to TRY 1000 for each check.
The major chance introduced by new law with regard to the check
regime has been provided by the amendment of article 5 of Law No:
5941 that imposes criminal sanctions to the issuers of bounced
checks. According to the article 3 of new law (Law No: 6273), the
issuer of a bounced check may only be subject to administrative
fine only in cases where the complainant applies to prosecution
offices within six months of submission of check.
The administrative sanctions are also imposed to managing
persons in cases where the issuer of a bounced check is legal
In contrary to the Law No: 5941, persons who issue bounced
checks are still restricted to issue new checks or to open check
accounts however in cases where the check amount and the interest
shall be calculated in accordance to the Law no 3095 is fully paid,
then the restriction is abolished by prosecutors.
The restriction decisions are also recorded by Central Bank of
Republic of Turkey for ten years and charged off ex officio.
Persons who are prohibited from issuing checks or opening checking
accounts is obliged to return any check leaves they have to the
banks. No new checking account may be opened in the name of these
persons. All the information relating to a decision about check
issuance or checking account prohibitions must be declared to the
No postdated check until 31 December 2017
In contrary to the principle of "paid at sight" and in
parallel with the provisions of Law no 5941, the new law, Law No:
6273 also repeals the postdated checks until 31 December 2017.
According to the provisional clause 3/5 of Law No 6273,
submission of a postdated check before the date of 31 December 2017
is null and void that means no legal proceeding shall be initiated
for the postdated checks issued before and until 31 December
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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