As a criminal justice professional I would like to tell you emphatically that yes you can get arrested for writing a bad check. This is completely illegal and can lead to very serious charges. Writing a check that you know you do not have funds for or that will attempt to draw funds from an account that does not exist as well as altering any information on the check is considered forgery. The crime that this would be considered is uttering a check. If you then use that check with the intent to get money from it then you would be guilty of publishing that bad check. These are two separate crimes and could each bring about jail time and fines.