#### Keith&Co.

##### Contributor
So, when i was a kid (between the Ice Age and Steam Power), a depatment store suffered a loss of monies owed, right before Xmas.
But the way it was lost was different.
Someone wrote a check on paper that was treated with acid. The check melted. It was squeezed in with the day's receipts and melted most of the checks around it in the deposit bag. They couldn't even identify who wrote them checks that day.

The store took out an ad on the paper, saying if you wrote a check for their store and it didn't clear, please come in and pay them what you owe.

Would you pay them? Why or why not? (Assuming we are NOT in today's world where the funds transfer electronically and instantly, the store just held your IOU.)

Personally, i would not. They got robbed. If i had paid cash, and the cash deposit bag was stolen, they'd be out those funds. I assume they are insured for such losses, and someone, somewhere, wrote down the sum of the bag's contents.

#### Loren Pechtel

##### Super Moderator
Staff member
Different scenario. Had you paid cash you would have already been out the cash. However, with the checks if it doesn't clear you haven't given them the promised money and thus you should.

#### Keith&Co.

##### Contributor
Different scenario. Had you paid cash you would have already been out the cash. However, with the checks if it doesn't clear you haven't given them the promised money and thus you should.
But i have the receipt that says i did. It's no longer my duty to see them paid.

And i have to think, if they file the insurance claim for the amount lost, if i pay the $50 i gave them, they will not tell their insurer to deduct$50 from the claim.

##### Veteran Member
Your bank could stop payment on the old check and you could write them a new check. Then you’ve paid them for the product(s) you received. To not pay them is theft by you.

Loren is right that the cash analogy is not an apt one.

#### thebeave

##### Veteran Member
I'd pay, assuming insurance was not going to cover it. Which is pretty likely for the amount lost back in those days, given the deductible.

##### Veteran Member
I’ve thought about this more and it may not be as clear cut as I originally stated. Though I’d probably pay them back the way I described, so that I still got the product for the money I gave, I can also see the argument that they have the responsibility to handle their money, even checks, so if they bungle that or get them destroyed one could say that that was their problem.

Note that if they got paid by insurance for their loss then it’s not right for them to get paid twice if i wrote them a new check.

#### Politesse

##### Lux Aeterna
So, when i was a kid (between the Ice Age and Steam Power), a depatment store suffered a loss of monies owed, right before Xmas.
But the way it was lost was different.
Someone wrote a check on paper that was treated with acid. The check melted. It was squeezed in with the day's receipts and melted most of the checks around it in the deposit bag. They couldn't even identify who wrote them checks that day.

The store took out an ad on the paper, saying if you wrote a check for their store and it didn't clear, please come in and pay them what you owe.

Would you pay them? Why or why not? (Assuming we are NOT in today's world where the funds transfer electronically and instantly, the store just held your IOU.)

Personally, i would not. They got robbed. If i had paid cash, and the cash deposit bag was stolen, they'd be out those funds. I assume they are insured for such losses, and someone, somewhere, wrote down the sum of the bag's contents.

They were robbed once. If you refuse to pay for your goods because you "have a receipt", even though you know full well they never received your payment and the receipt means nothing, they will have been robbed twice. No one can stop you in this case, but don't pretend you're any better than the common thief, if all you were waiting for was your own opportunity to get something for nothing. In this scenario, you're much like a person who comes across a broken ATM spitting money and makes off with it. You might not get in trouble, but you've done nothing remotely admirable.

#### crazyfingers

##### Supermagnon
Staff member
Your bank could stop payment on the old check and you could write them a new check. Then you’ve paid them for the product(s) you received. To not pay them is theft by you.

Loren is right that the cash analogy is not an apt one.

I'm in agreement. I would not necessarily go as far as calling it theft as I did everything to pay them and paying them was my intent. But I believe that I'd have the moral obligation to make sure that the store got paid for what I purchased.

#### Keith&Co.

##### Contributor
They were robbed once. If you refuse to pay for your goods because you "have a receipt", even though you know full well they never received your payment and the receipt means nothing, they will have been robbed twice.
Not twice. They were robbed once. The acid thief deprived them of the cpntents of the deposit bag, say for argument that's $2000. My$50 check is in that $2000. The amount they report to the cops snd their insurance. I do not rob them a second time. At eorsf i am zn accesdory after the fact to the one robbery. Oh. I am an accessory after the fact. Huh. I would now pick my "organized crime" nickname, like Bugsy or Three-fingered Mike, but in any estimation my nick would be professor. #### Shadowy Man ##### Veteran Member Your bank could stop payment on the old check and you could write them a new check. Then you’ve paid them for the product(s) you received. To not pay them is theft by you. Loren is right that the cash analogy is not an apt one. I'm in agreement. I would not necessarily go as far as calling it theft as I did everything to pay them and paying them was my intent. But I believe that I'd have the moral obligation to make sure that the store got paid for what I purchased. I did soften my response, but I do think there is the moral obligation to pay for what you received and with checks there is an easy way to remedy their loss. Assuming then they don’t get double paid via the insurance. #### fromderinside ##### Mazzie Daius If they have a record of your transaction, their copy of your receipt, that did not travel with the checks they have legitimate claim to payment. #### Loren Pechtel ##### Super Moderator Staff member If they have a record of your transaction, their copy of your receipt, that did not travel with the checks they have legitimate claim to payment. Whether they can prove it or not has no bearing on whether you owe it. #### Keith&Co. ##### Contributor If they have a record of your transaction, their copy of your receipt, that did not travel with the checks they have legitimate claim to payment. If they had a record, they'd be calling me direct. Asking for volunteers tells me they are not able to do that. But i really think this is double dipping. They are going to file a claim on their insurance for loss, including the value of my check. To ask me to pay it, also, is just greed on their part. #### crazyfingers ##### Supermagnon Staff member If they have a record of your transaction, their copy of your receipt, that did not travel with the checks they have legitimate claim to payment. If they had a record, they'd be calling me direct. Asking for volunteers tells me they are not able to do that. But i really think this is double dipping. They are going to file a claim on their insurance for loss, including the value of my check. To ask me to pay it, also, is just greed on their part. If the store really would be paid twice, then I'd ask the store for confirmation. If they are going to be reimbursed in full then I'd say that I'll give them another$50 if they return $50 of the insurance payout. If they would be paid for 75% of the loss then I'd pay 25% of what I'd have paid. That only goes if I paid by check because if the check dissolved into putty, I'm not out anything. If I had paid cash then I'd not pay a second time. #### Keith&Co. ##### Contributor If they have a record of your transaction, their copy of your receipt, that did not travel with the checks they have legitimate claim to payment. If they had a record, they'd be calling me direct. Asking for volunteers tells me they are not able to do that. But i really think this is double dipping. They are going to file a claim on their insurance for loss, including the value of my check. To ask me to pay it, also, is just greed on their part. If the store really would be paid twice, then I'd ask the store for confirmation. If they are going to be reimbursed in full then I'd say that I'll give them another$50 if they return $50 of the insurance payout. If they would be paid for 75% of the loss then I'd pay 25% of what I'd have paid. That only goes if I paid by check because if the check dissolved into putty, I'm not out anything. If I had paid cash then I'd not pay a second time. Well, they chose the insurance plan they wanted to pay for. Full restitution or partial will affect their payments. So, if they lost$2000 and get \$1500 back, thst's between them and their shareholders.
I just really think all this is post-Keith's involvement.

#### bilby

##### Fair dinkum thinkum
It would be the insurance company to whom any money would be owed, and it would be for them to make an appeal for those whose checks were never banked to come forward and pay for the goods received.

The store's dealings would be exclusively with their insurer, not with their customers. The insurer could ask the store to assist, but any appeal by the store should be for money to be sent to the insurance company.

The right thing to do would be to pay the insurance company when they appealed for people to do so.

#### Copernicus

I have no idea what this moral dilemma has to do with secular lifestyles.

The hypothetical scenario made a muddle of the insurance issue, since it is not at all clear what the insurer would do to reimburse the loss. Keith merely made some assumptions at the end, but he wasn't clear whether there was any hypothetical insurance policy or just an assumption by the person who wrote the check. Either way, the person who purchased the goods gave a promissory note of payment, not an actual payment. So either the business or the insurer should eat the loss for the disappearance of a promissory note, not the promiser, according to Keith.

I still think that there is a moral obligation to pay for goods that one purchases with a promissory note, even if the note gets destroyed before it can be cashed. The purchaser may not be legally required to hand over money in the absence of the physical note. That would depend on a court deciding the legal merits of the transaction, given that there would be lawyers arguing both sides of the case. However, it really costs the purchaser nothing additional to make good on his original promise, whether the physical note is present or not. Refusing to honor that original promise of payment would be wrong. The business would likely be obligated to pay back the insurer for any funds that it recovered. The acid vandal should go to jail.

#### Never

##### Super Moderator
Staff member
Thread moved because it is not related to Secular Lifestyle

#### Bronzeage

##### Super Moderator
Staff member
I think the scenario is quite improbable, just based on simple chemistry, but the premise is clear enough.

A person has done all required on their end and concluded a transaction. If the other party has a misfortune and loses their half, what is the proper course. In this case, one loses nothing by doing something, and one benefits by doing nothing. If one paid cash, no one expects to them to pay again for the misfortune. That's pretty clear. The person who paid by check, hasn't technically completed the transaction yet. This result is the same as than stopping payment on the check, which is clearly wrong.

It's a simple decision. Write them another check.

#### none

##### Banned
Banned
Is this about Walmart or Kmart?

#### Alcoholic Actuary

##### Senior Member
It would be the insurance company to whom any money would be owed, and it would be for them to make an appeal for those whose checks were never banked to come forward and pay for the goods received.

The store's dealings would be exclusively with their insurer, not with their customers. The insurer could ask the store to assist, but any appeal by the store should be for money to be sent to the insurance company.

The right thing to do would be to pay the insurance company when they appealed for people to do so.
This one. It is most likely the insurance company who is asking for the merchant's help in subrogating the loss. The insurer also most likely paid for the ad. And finally, the insurer will most likely split any subrogation proportionally between the insured deductible and total amount of loss paid. I'm sure this wasn't the first time an incident like this occurred - "they know a thing or two because they've seen a thing or two"

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