The Washington Township Police Department is warning people to beware of an internet scam where someone offers to buy your car with a certified check and comes up with a reason to write the check for significantly more than the asking price and requests the seller wire the difference to someone (most often claimed to cover “shipping” charges). They will send you a counterfeit check and your bank may clear the check, however, in a week or so, the check turns out to be counterfeit and the bank requires the car seller (you) to cover the money for the phony check. Banks will often release funds against your account after 3-5 days, regardless of whether a checks funds have actually cleared and been deposited into your account.
To avoid falling for such a scam call the bank who issued the check prior to depositing it and confirm that it is legitimate, then, wait seven to ten days after deposit to find out if the check has cleared the issuing bank before doing anything with that money or handing over the title to the car. When in doubt, please contact the police department with any questions or concerns.