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ripa

My old job overpaid me now want it back

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OK I will try and be as detailed as possible, and would appreciate people read the whole story before commenting. I am seeking outsider's thoughts on the issue, be it a moral, ethical or 'legal' opinion and anything inbetween:

 

- So I am invited to work as the weekend IT help guy, little part time job around uni studies, 38 week contract (February 2008 - November 2008), paid $130 a fortnight to fix and configure student's laptops in the University library 3 hours a week on Sundays..

- My employer is the University which I am also enrolled in full time (and will continue be until November 2010).

- So I start working the first Sunday, very quickly the demand increases and i'm working far more than had been asked of me, but I didn't mind because I actually enjoyed it as I was meeting loads of people and it was a great environment for me to study inbetween configuring laptops. I also notice i'm being paid $130 a week, not a fortnight, though I honestly forgot the contract said differently and I believed that I offered a more than fair service for the money I was getting.

- About half way through the year the other IT guy quit, instead of hiring someone to replace him I was given all his workload ontop of my own. I quickly became disgruntled with them for this but and didn't have the time or effort to look for a better job so stuck it out the end of the university year, November 2008. Then commenced with a different employer.

 

Fast forward to July 2009...

 

Much to my disbelief the university finance department sends me a polite letter informing me i've been overpaid and must return $2470 within fourteen days. No explaination or apology. Bullshit I think, and throw it in the bin. And the subsequent letter. And the next one. The next one is a heavily worded request from a collection agency..

 

Now I admit they overpaid the contracted amount i'd agreed to, but this is my reality:

- I was under the impression I was alwasys ment to be paid the amount that was being put into my bank account. My payslips matched the money going into my bank account, therefore I was given the impression the payments were correct.

- I spent the money believing it was mine, therefore if I had to pay it back this puts me in a worse financial position than before. Had I known I was only earning $130 a fortnight, I would have looked for a second or alternate job. The finance department gave me the impression that the wages were correct, so I could not reasonably be expected to notice anything was wrong, so spent it.

- Had I known I was only meant to be paid half that amount, I honestly would have left the job at the time, or at least put in much less effort (i was working totally unsupervised and honestly did over and above what was originally being asked of me, ie unpaid hours).

- The income ate into my centrelink youth allowance payments (declared income, I probally lost a couple of hundred in centrelink because of the amount University was paying me). Also some of the money went straight to the tax department (they're asking for a return of the nett amount, wtf?) and I filed tax returns based on these amounts.

- Yes, I can easily afford to pay it back.

- They can probally get me kicked out of my degree.

 

What would you do?

Do i have a leg to stand on?

I don't think they did it intentionally but if you think about it this could be used by employers as a kind of loophole, ie overpaying people in undesireable, hard to fill jobs so they stay... then 7 months later asking for the money back.

Edited by ripa

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morally, id tell them to go eat a cock sandwhich with a side of fried balls.

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yeah agreed, tell them to f**k off.

 

its harder now due to the fact that its been handed over to a collection agency, you should have written them a letter as soon as you got the first couple of demands.

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The phrase "nip it in the bud" usually applies with shit like this. when you got that first letter, you should have actually done something about it besides binning it, because now its in the hands of a soulless collection agency that dont have any other questions than 'where is our money' and dont want any other answer other than 'right here sir'

 

 

Do i have a leg to stand on?

 

Now I admit they overpaid the contracted amount i'd agreed to, but this is my reality:

-I was under the impression I was alwasys ment to be paid the amountthat was being put into my bank account. My payslips matched the moneygoing into my bank account, therefore I was given the impression thepayments were correct.

- I spent the money believing it was mine,therefore if I had to pay it back this puts me in a worse financialposition than before. Had I known I was only earning $130 a fortnight,I would have looked for a second or alternate job. The financedepartment gave me the impression that the wages were correct, so Icould not reasonably be expected to notice anything was wrong, so spentit.

 

Not really, IMO.

 

you signed a contract. regardless of the pay error, you agreed to $X for Yhrs per week for Z amount of weeks. they overpaid you, probably a pay office error, and they are entitled to it back. contract is proof that you agreed to it, unless you have proof that you worked more than you were supposed to, and your supervisor/payer agreed to pay you more, then you are out of luck.

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yes you do have a leg to stand on. The error is no fault of your own, the mistake is on their end so you shouldnt you need to foot the bill for that.

 

If you fraudulently took it then your in the shit but after reading through that, wipe your hands clean.

 

The same thing happens if u accidently put money into someone elses account its upto you to double check the details no the bank and therefore legally they dont have to give it back, its only a moral thing.

 

Debt collectors are used as a means of threat, they cannot do nothing about this situation, they are hoping you read it and buckle at the knees and pay it back. The only thing they can try is, as your a current enrolled student is to add the total to your student fees....but even then you can leave and continue studying elsewhere

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yes you do have a leg to stand on. The error is no fault of your own, the mistake is on their end so you shouldnt you need to foot the bill for that.

 

If you fraudulently took it then your in the shit but after reading through that, wipe your hands clean.

 

The same thing happens if u accidently put money into someone elses account its upto you to double check the details no the bank and therefore legally they dont have to give it back, its only a moral thing.

 

Debt collectors are used as a means of threat, they cannot do nothing about this situation, they are hoping you read it and buckle at the knees and pay it back. The only thing they can try is, as your a current enrolled student is to add the total to your student fees....but even then you can leave and continue studying elsewhere

 

Everything in this post is wrong.

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yes you do have a leg to stand on. The error is no fault of your own, the mistake is on their end so you shouldnt you need to foot the bill for that.

 

If you fraudulently took it then your in the shit but after reading through that, wipe your hands clean.

 

The same thing happens if u accidently put money into someone elses account its upto you to double check the details no the bank and therefore legally they dont have to give it back, its only a moral thing.

 

Debt collectors are used as a means of threat, they cannot do nothing about this situation, they are hoping you read it and buckle at the knees and pay it back. The only thing they can try is, as your a current enrolled student is to add the total to your student fees....but even then you can leave and continue studying elsewhere

 

 

You my friend are crazy and a classic example of why you don't listen to advice on NS.

 

Dude first of all go and see your Union. They will give you the best advice and let you know your rights. If you aren't in the Union for your industry, go there and explain your situation and generally they will let you pay an amount for them to help you.

 

I have been overpaid by my employer which are Govt owned and I had to pay the money back. Granted I was offered to pay it back at a % of my wage per week (part of my work place agreement).

 

In the end like it or not, the money that you spent didn't belong to you and it wasn't the amount you agreed on. I personally think that its crap that if you get overpaid you should pay it back.

 

Alternatively you could speak to a HR Manager at the University or whatever. Just remember, document all discussions, keep notes, try to get things in writing where possible.

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You're fine.

 

Their payments match your payslips = too bad for them. I assume they know this and cannot do a thing about except scare you with the hope you might refund it.

 

Particularly as it's after the end of the financial year/s it occurred in means you've submitted your tax including their payments.

 

As for the above about asking a union, bah hahaha. Ask workplaces services instead - they wont have much of a clue either, but they'll tell you what can/can't be done to the best of their understanding of the Act.

 

Also, if they mix this financial situation in with Uni, I suggest you go speak to your program director and get the faculty on your side.

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Sounds complicated, doesn't seem fair, and I feel for you but I'm not sure that you have a leg to stand on. As was said, you should have got onto this a lot earlier and maybe this will be a lesson learnt (I've learnt this type of lesson also). I've also repaid cash after I was overpaid and was told that there was stuff-all I could do about it, although it was only $200 or so.

 

- They can probally get me kicked out of my degree.

They cannot legally kick you out of your degree for an issue of this nature. I also worked at a uni I was studying at and they definitely don't have the power to do something like that. As for adding it onto your uni debt: that bloke is absolutely kidding himself!

 

You my friend are crazy and a classic example of why you don't listen to advice on NS.

Agreed 100%. Free advice is worth what you pay for it (NS.com know-it-alls)

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NSW Solicitor here... Without committing myself to your case, I would recommend you speak to a lawyer. You have a case.

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NSW Solicitor here... Without committing myself to your case, I would recommend you speak to a lawyer. You have a case.

 

are you hot like the one in underbelly?

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its not good advice but my advice might work...

 

plain and simply just don't pay the bill... getting a debt collector on somebody these days is almost as expensive as hiring a solicitor or barrister... in the end a mere $2,000 may be more trouble then its worth... they will send you like 50 letters but just ignore them... push comes to shove and the s**t hits the fan... just say to the debt collectors that you wish to pursue legal action and hire a solicitor that will probably never be used and watch them run like ants in the rain... just be careful because they can blacklist for credit... that = REALLY BAD!!!!

 

disclaimer!!!!! this is not good advice :lol: :lol: :lol:

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NSW Solicitor here... Without committing myself to your case, I would recommend you speak to a lawyer. You have a case.

 

It would appear all has been reveaaalledd!

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