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Old 03-11-2008, 11:18 AM
Location: The Big D
14,874 posts, read 38,650,931 times
Reputation: 5787


1. Yep, never hire friends or relatives. I'm "on the books" at our company but I'm ALSO on the board. There is nothing wrong w/ that at all as there are jobs I do so the owners wife is okay for being "on the books" as an employee.

2. ALWAYS sign your own checks AND do your own accounts payables and payroll. Our company is MUCH larger than your friends and there are only two people that can sign checks: my husband and myself. Once my husband forgot to sign one employees payroll check and the bank officer could not get ahold of him so she called me on my cell to verify it was okay. So banking at a LOCAL bank where you get to know your officer is also a great strategy.

3. NEVER use a CPA or Accountant that is related to ANYONE that also works for the company. We have our CPA do all of our books and ONLY discusses ANYTHING that has to do w/ financials with the two of us and NO ONE ELSE!

4. Don't pay cash to employees as their payroll!!! The business owner will come out of this MUCH better than the accountant and the employee. The IRS could nail her for self employment taxes too if he says she was "contract labor". Cash to reimburse them for other expenses as long as a receipt was turned in is totally different.

5. Pressing charges could be difficult. Why? Because she had ACCESS to it. No lie this is what we have been told when a former employee was stealing from us. The police said, "they had access to it so there is nothing we can do" Since the items he stole were hazardous materials and should not be in a residential area and he had them in his garage I called the police AND the fire dept while we sat in the truck blocking their drive. We got our stuff back after the authorities came out. He got fined and a ticket and lost his job.

6. Turn in the accountant for shady business practices for sure.

7. This should be NUMBER UNO...................... FIRE HER ON THE SPOT!!!!! You don't need to contact an attorney to fire someone for theft. He has proof and the records of such should be locked up under his control ASAP! Copies made and turned into an attorney to hold would also be wise. We had the cancelled check from an ex-business partner where he paid his "girlfriend" for "services". He was married.

8. Change the locks on the business.

9. Contact the BANK ASAP and have her removed from the account. Change the mailing address for the statements to be sent to. You can also have the bank have them customer pick up instead of mailing them out IF you work w/ a local bank.

10. Because of situations like this and having dealt w/ a previous business partner............ I don't go into business with ANYONE PERIOD!

11. IRS - the business owner can contact a good attorney that specializes in IRS issues and figure out a way to make amends. I'd do this right off the bat as well to make sure his hiney is covered and anything she or her accountant husband tries to pull is useless.

12. Friends are not always "friends" in the true since of the word. When money is involved one soon realizes who their TRUE friends are.
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Old 03-11-2008, 11:21 AM
Location: The Big D
14,874 posts, read 38,650,931 times
Reputation: 5787
Originally Posted by sskkc View Post
I agree that he should speak with an attorney before proceeding.

To put his mind at ease on one front... his wife being listed as an employee is not an issue. Who is to say the wife did not work for the company... her job description could be "consultant" or whatever. This is something many small businesses do to qualify for health insurance. It's not illegal.
Exactly. One can also keep a former owner "on the books" if an agreement is written up in the documents and the business can still provide them w/ a paycheck for their share of the business they sold AND can still be required to provide them w/ health insurance. I've seen this a million times. No big deal on this front at all. Where he COULD get in trouble is if the wife is working and NOT getting paid. Strange but true. Our CPA AND financial advisors along w/ corporate attorneys advised us TO put me on the payroll. No big deal w/ that at all - this is a non-issue.
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Old 03-11-2008, 11:59 AM
Location: Boca Raton, FL
5,661 posts, read 9,272,627 times
Reputation: 7432
Smile Secretary stealing

The person's husband may not know of this at all. Kind of like in a marriage - sometimes, the spouse is the last to know.

I have hired friends and hired people who became friends. They were my best people but we had controls in place!

I mean, I wish I could lose $4000 per month without noticing! I would notice $250.00!!
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Old 03-13-2008, 09:43 PM
Location: Utah
1,455 posts, read 3,709,754 times
Reputation: 1537
Originally Posted by KevK View Post
It might be hard to make a case like this stick against her. She is going to go to court and tell the judge and jury that he was a friend of hers and that it was her understanding that she could spend the money she spent- that he said it was OK for her to do so because he could write it off as a business expense. And since she was a friend, it will be a hard case to prove because the average Joe on the jury may not be able to tell where friendship ended and the business relationship started. He might have better luck in Civil Court because the standard to win there is much lower- only the weight of the evidence. But as for a criminal case, this would be hard to prosecute and win. That is why I say NEVER EVER EVER hire family or friends to work in your business.

This is EXACTLY what happened to us. After 2 years of persuing criminal prosecution, the DA dropped it because
1. My H has signed my name in the past so it was "inferred" that it is okay with me that someone else signed my check (yeah, sure, would you like to sign one too?)

2. There was one check for less than $50 to an office supply store that I told them I was not 100% sure was forged, and even though there was tens of $1000 more, they said a jury has to know we are 100% sure about everything. It would look like I told her to go ahead.

She's got to be shut down in every way. Some one else said...

change the address-even temporarily
contact the IRS and notify them that she "UNJUSTLY ENRICHED" her income
file a police report
did she tamper with mail? file a report with the PO
take her off any and all accounts and RED FLAG them so she can't sweet talk

Good luck. After this happened to us, I began to realize it happens ALL THE TIME.
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Old 03-14-2008, 05:26 AM
Location: Atlanta
281 posts, read 980,764 times
Reputation: 200
Finally.....do a darn credit check on any employee that will touch your accounts! I have seen this ignored so many times and companies ripped off!
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