What are my rights if when I went on maternity leave but was mistakenly paid my full salary because my former manager resigned while I was on leave and never turned in the proper paperwork?

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What are my rights if when I went on maternity leave but was mistakenly paid my full salary because my former manager resigned while I was on leave and never turned in the proper paperwork?

I found a new job while on leave and my former company is requesting I pay back the extra they paid me during leave since I was only supposed to get a smaller percentage. Am I legally obligated to pay them back even though they made the accounting mistake?

Asked on July 30, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, Indiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

You have to repay the money: an accounting mistake does not entitle you to keep it. If you were supposed to be paid a smaller amount, that's all you had a right to receive and must return anything over that. Just as a plumber would have to return your overpayment is you accidentally wrote him a check for $700.00 instead of $100 (if you'd mis-read the "1" on the invoice as a "7"), so you do have to return the overpayment in this case. If you do not, they could sue you for the money.


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