What if the OP had spent the money before it was retaken by the bank?
Then it would mean bounced payments, overdrafts, etc., because of a subsequent decision by the bank after accepting the deposit. Cheques are still widely used in the US and for many companies it is the only way they will pay.
But I don't have any clients that send me cheques, I get paid only by bank transfer.
Ben Why didn't you ask for payment via Paypal, Moneybookers, Skrill, etc. It may cost you some money, but it's much easier, faster and more reliable.
The friendly Bank official said it wasn't a bad cheque, there could have just been an error with my name or the date or something.