Can I deduct a credit on an account dating back7 months?

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Can I deduct a credit on an account dating back7 months?

My babysitter accepted double payments from both myself and daughter’s grandmother back in 03/10 for payment of my daughter’s daycare. I recently took my children out of daycare due to issues with their babysitter and tried to exercise the credit on account due to the double payment back in March. I noted on account when the situation happened and my babysitter never acknowledged that she received double payment although I have my bank records proving that she received double payment and a signed document from my daughter’s grandmother stating that she paid her for the same time period I did. Am I able to deduct this credit from the final amount due if I have proof of this double payment? My babysitter is stating that I cannot since the double payment happened in March. She is now admitting to the double payment, but says it doesn’t matter since it was in March. She is being totally fraudulent and altering her records.

Asked on September 16, 2010 under Business Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Two different issues are involved here:

First, the law--if there was a double payment or overpayment, the recipient can't simply keep it. She needs to refund it, credit it, etc.

Second, practicalities, which itself has two parts:

Part 1--proving there was a double payment; this can be difficult if records are not good and/or if the other party has altered its records.

Part 2--at the end of the day, if you and the other party disagree, it could come to litigation, or a lawsuit; i.e. if she says you owe her money and you say you don't, she could, in theory, sue to collect, at which point you'd have a chance to show your side. You need to weigh the amount of the credit you hope to get vs. the time and cost of trying to obtain it; it may not be worth it.


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