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Old 07-17-2020, 06:35 AM
 
9,170 posts, read 5,233,818 times
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I was recently assessed a $32 "returned check" fee by my credit union for a check that bounced. The kicker is...I didn't write the check! It was one made out to me by another party who is responsible for it bouncing. So not only was the amount of money I was given when I cashed the check withdrawn from my account, so was this additional fee. When I questioned it, I was assured that "it's a federal law" and that the other party, who was responsible for it being returned, was charged the same fee (!). Still not satisfied, I asked to speak to a higher-up, who was "happy" to reimburse me that fee. I don't understand why I was penalized for someone else's insufficient funds and/or how both parties are equally responsible for it. Can anyone explain?
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Old 07-17-2020, 06:37 AM
 
80,903 posts, read 79,033,206 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by otterhere View Post
I was recently assessed a $32 "returned check" fee by my credit union for a check that bounced. The kicker is...I didn't write the check! It was one made out to me by another party who is responsible for it bouncing. So not only was the amount of money I was given when I cashed the check withdrawn from my account, so was this additional fee. When I questioned it, I was assured that "it's a federal law" and that the other party, who was responsible for it being returned, was charged the same fee (!). Still not satisfied, I asked to speak to a higher-up, who was "happy" to reimburse me that fee. I don't understand why I was penalized for someone else's insufficient funds and/or how both parties are equally responsible for it. Can anyone explain?
yes . you both get charged ...you can try to collect it back from the other party ...
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Old 07-17-2020, 06:49 AM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
4,021 posts, read 4,678,382 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by otterhere View Post
I was recently assessed a $32 "returned check" fee by my credit union for a check that bounced. The kicker is...I didn't write the check!

Friend of mine picked up a bunch of sandwiches for the folks in the office. One guy gave her a check for $6, which then bounced. She got hit with a $35 bounced check fee. When she asked him about the check, his response was "try cashing it again". Needless to say, she didn't pay for his lunch again.
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Old 07-17-2020, 07:26 AM
 
9,170 posts, read 5,233,818 times
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How is it ethical -- assuming it's even legal -- to charge the victim of a bounced check for the other person's failure? Is the payee supposed to have psychic powers to know whether or not there are sufficient funds in the payor's bank account?
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Old 07-17-2020, 07:32 AM
 
80,903 posts, read 79,033,206 times
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Originally Posted by otterhere View Post
How is it ethical -- assuming it's even legal -- to charge the victim of a bounced check for the other person's failure? Is the payee supposed to have psychic powers to know whether or not there are sufficient funds in the payor's bank account?
"This is a simple matter of contract law. The technical term is “privity”.

Your bank has no contract with the person whose check you deposited.


Now truly, he can be held liable for the damages which you incur, and you are totally within your rights to demand that he reimburse you for this fee, provided it’s actually customary and reasonable. It is really quite ordinary that a business which receives a check that bounces will add a fee (e.g. $25, subject to statutory limits), then that covers the returned item fee they are charged along with their other expenses.

Having said this, when you open your checking account, you should be looking at the schedule of fees (this was in there, or at least it should have been), so the amount of the fee, or the fact that you would be liable for it, should have been no surprise to you. We must assume that you are familiar with the idea that a person cannot be obligated to a contract which they have not entered into, so that “deposited returned item” charge was something you would be liable for."
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Old 07-17-2020, 07:46 AM
 
21,139 posts, read 15,340,596 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by otterhere View Post
How is it ethical -- assuming it's even legal -- to charge the victim of a bounced check for the other person's failure? Is the payee supposed to have psychic powers to know whether or not there are sufficient funds in the payor's bank account?
It’s legal and ethical because you deposited a check at your bank which was not in good standing. Your bank has to do additional work because of this and thusly you get charged because you had a returned check.
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Old 07-17-2020, 07:56 AM
 
Location: Western Washington
10,573 posts, read 9,508,785 times
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Yes, this is legal and happens all the time. This is why stores charge customers a bounced check fee, they are simply trying to recover their costs.
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Old 07-17-2020, 09:20 AM
 
Location: Censorshipville...
3,077 posts, read 6,601,233 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by don6170 View Post
Friend of mine picked up a bunch of sandwiches for the folks in the office. One guy gave her a check for $6, which then bounced. She got hit with a $35 bounced check fee. When she asked him about the check, his response was "try cashing it again". Needless to say, she didn't pay for his lunch again.
Who the heck writes a check for $6 for lunch? What year was this lol.
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Old 07-17-2020, 10:00 AM
 
Location: on the wind
11,075 posts, read 5,038,041 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
"This is a simple matter of contract law. The technical term is “privity”.

Your bank has no contract with the person whose check you deposited.


Now truly, he can be held liable for the damages which you incur, and you are totally within your rights to demand that he reimburse you for this fee, provided it’s actually customary and reasonable. It is really quite ordinary that a business which receives a check that bounces will add a fee (e.g. $25, subject to statutory limits), then that covers the returned item fee they are charged along with their other expenses.

Having said this, when you open your checking account, you should be looking at the schedule of fees (this was in there, or at least it should have been), so the amount of the fee, or the fact that you would be liable for it, should have been no surprise to you. We must assume that you are familiar with the idea that a person cannot be obligated to a contract which they have not entered into, so that “deposited returned item” charge was something you would be liable for."
This. Thinking back, most bank account statements I've gotten have reminders about fees for bounced checks; whether I bounce them or someone I have a transaction with does. Either way, dealing with a bad check costs them time and money. They pass that on to you...the cause of the trouble. I've gotten a fee for depositing a bounced check. It was a matter of bad timing...the check was presented before a deposit the writer was expecting was credited to their account. I went back to the check writer and asked to be reimbursed for the fee. He took me out to lunch to apologize for the hassle too. Problem solved. I suspect when your bank refunded the fee it was because you are not worth the time to quarrel over $36.
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Old 07-17-2020, 10:07 AM
 
3,759 posts, read 1,550,812 times
Reputation: 9740
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Originally Posted by fishbrains View Post
Yes, this is legal and happens all the time. This is why stores charge customers a bounced check fee, they are simply trying to recover their costs.
Their costs and then some. For most banks, these fees are a bonanza- kind of like all the extra fees he airlines charge.

I agree, though- perfectly legal if disclosed up front.
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