@mrwormy- I bounced a check one time and had the same problem with cascading fees and penalties. A $15 check to a barber ended up costing me over $150 when everything finally got settled. I asked my bank if there was anything I could do to avoid getting hit with so many bounced check fees. They said they did have some discretion when it came to applying those fees. If someone really did make an honest mistake, like forgetting an old check, then the bank could decide to drop the fine on some bad checks.
The other thing they suggested was to set up a line of credit and connect it electronically to your main checking account. If your checking account ever dropped below a zero dollar balance, the difference would be automatically deducted from the line of credit. It's a good way to prevent all of those fees from kicking in, but the money is still considered a loan, and the interest rate could be fairly high.