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To think that people who write cheques and then complain when they go overdrawn are a bit stupid?

(44 Posts)
Ripeberry Wed 07-Jan-09 09:50:48

First day back at the pre-school and someone is already demanding that the pre-school pay their bank charges (over £100) because we paid in the cheque 'late'.
Well excuse me, but cheques are valid for 6 months and most intelligent people know that they have written a cheque and allow for it in their bank account.
As i'm on the committee and help out regularly i'm in the firing line and she is quite a scary person and she thinks that because i collected the cheques its my fault.
I collect the cheques to give to our Treasurer and i don't pay them in.
But the fact is, YOU WROTE THE CHEQUE, SO ALLOW FOR IT!
I know i'm going to have a bit argument with this woman as she thinks she is always right about everything!
Wish me luck! angry

KingHerodNametaken Wed 07-Jan-09 09:52:15

Good luck. What a twat (her, not you)

compo Wed 07-Jan-09 09:52:46

It is annoying though when people hang onto them though
the treasurer ought to pay them in once a week

meemar Wed 07-Jan-09 09:53:54

ripeberry - don't you know the customer is always right wink

Ripeberry Wed 07-Jan-09 10:00:25

We are a voluntuary committee and the pre-school is a registered charity. This lady was late paying in her cheque in the first place and had the cheek to take £2 off as the pre-school leader was taken ill and the last 1hr! of the session was missed.
The thing is, i've helped her out loads of times by having her child at my house for an hour when she could not get back from work.
I just was really upset at the way she spoke to me this morning. Not even a hello and happy New Year.
Just straight away, YOU owe me £100! I'm just not in the mood to be diplomatic today sad

compo Wed 07-Jan-09 10:02:27

sad
she doesn't sound very nice
I guess money worries are making her unreasonable though sad

TotalChaos Wed 07-Jan-09 10:02:43

agree with compo. some of us are on a financial knife edge in the run up to pay day.

TotalChaos Wed 07-Jan-09 10:03:35

she does sound rather lacking in manners, I do agree.

TotalChaos Wed 07-Jan-09 10:03:55

out of interest - how late was the cheque paid in?

Hassled Wed 07-Jan-09 10:05:11

I have to confess that I've been caught out often through this - I've written a cheque, assumed it's been cleared and so assumed I had more funds in my account than I did.

But the thing is, I've been making assumptions and it was up to me to check and keep a tally of uncleared cheques. Stand your ground Ripeberry - if she's had £100 of bank charges then that's really her problem. Like you say, the cheque is good for 6 months and with things like pre-schools where it's a voluntary thing, there are bound to be delays in playing in cheques.

electra Wed 07-Jan-09 10:05:28

You're correct in principle but I find it very annoying when people cash cheques very very late - I do think it is rude.

meemar Wed 07-Jan-09 10:05:42

sorry she's upset you so much. I'm on the committee of a preschool too and some parents are terrible p*ss takers.

Try not to take it personally - she's a silly cow and you have the satisfaction of not owing her £100 which she has lost through her own fault smile

ThingOne Wed 07-Jan-09 10:06:12

I think it's very bad practice to hold onto cheques and not cash them straight away. I find it extremely annoying when people to whom you pay money can't be bothered to do their job and bank the cheques regularly.

I think you should apologise to the woman for the Treasurer's disorganisation and find a Treasurer who can do the job asap. You shouldn't pay her bank charges but you, as in the pre-school, should certainly apologise, for the problem it has caused her.

ThingOne Wed 07-Jan-09 10:07:45

X-posted, and didn't see all of story. Obviously not on for her to be rude.

BTW, being a charity does not exempt you from goof financial practice. I have done similar jobs myself many times over the years.

meemar Wed 07-Jan-09 10:09:06

I disagree. If you write a cheque for a substantial sum of money the onus is on you to check it has cleared your account, especially if you are likely to go overdrawn.

If she wanted the money cleared instantly she should have paid the preschool cash.

daftpunk Wed 07-Jan-09 10:09:23

if i give someone a cheque i expect it to be cashed within a week or two ...i'm afraid i can see her point....how late did you cash the cheque?

Ripeberry Wed 07-Jan-09 10:12:34

It was about 3 weeks late. I don't know when the cheques were paid in as i don't deal with them. But maybe they were done a bit later than normal because our Treasurer was unable to drive for almost 5 weeks due to an emergency operation.
But then she could have asked other people to cash them in.
Maybe i should just direct this lady to the Treasurer? As she has all the facts.
We are having a committee meeting tonight anyway and we are going to write to all the parents about what they should be doing such as paying ON TIME not when they feel like it and also making allowances for their cheques.
And if it was not for our Treasurer there would not be a pre-school! So we can't just "get rid" as they are not even employed. This is all done voluntuary by people who have full-time jobs as well!

MrsMopple Wed 07-Jan-09 10:12:36

Sorry you've been put in this position about something that wasn't your fault (I agree that it's a bit annoying when cheques get cashed a long time after they're written, but accept responsibility when it happens to me that I should keep better tabs on my outgoings).
That said, she really shouldn't have been charged £100 in bank fees in any case, as it's apparently been ruled to be unlawful - get her to go to moneysavingexpert.com and take it up with her bank.

ThingOne Wed 07-Jan-09 10:12:55

Indeed she should take responsibility for her own finances. I didn't say she shouldn't. That does not mean it is OK to hold onto cheques. It really isn't.

ThingOne Wed 07-Jan-09 10:22:14

Yes, your treasurer really should have given somebody else the job of paying in the cheques.

Obviously being ill does make a difference, but she really should have made alternative arrangements. I would pass the lady onto the Treasurer. Then the complainer can see that there were genuine reasons and the Treasurer can actually see the effects of her mistake in not handing the work on when she couldn't do it.

I fully understand she is a volunteer, as I said I have done this job many times myself. This is one of the reasons I know it is not acceptable to hide behind the "we're a small charity" line. And if volunteers can't do their jobs you have to get ones that can do their jobs. It's money and it must be treated properly. It is not hard to pay in cheques, honestly. I used to get shit from my last committee is cheques were not handled within a week. I made sure they were. As a volunteer. With a full-time job.

I think you are absolutely right to make sure people pay on time. Three weeks late is not acceptable. But you are on a bit of a sticky wicket explaining how important cash flow is if your Treasurer sits on cheques for weeks on end.

Bramshott Wed 07-Jan-09 10:32:54

I think you need to stand your ground and explain to the woman that there was an unforseen delay in paying the cheques in in December. It may have been inconvenient, but it was unavoidable with a volunteer committee, and you are certainly not responsible for her bank charges.

But then I guess you as a committee should probably agree that cheques should be banked once a week (or do they only come in termly?), say on a Friday morning, and that in future if the Treasurer can't do that, she needs to pass them onto someone else. And then let the parents know that's what happens. Could still mean that if they post a cheque on a Wednesday or Thursday it won't get banked the following Friday, but at least they will know the system.

Late banking of cheques is midly irritating, but very common and not just from charities and voluntary groups either. She certainly should have been responsible for checking whether the money had gone out or not. Can you suggest she pays by bank transfer in future?!

retiredgoth2 Wed 07-Jan-09 10:36:17

...I can't see that one cheque taking someone marginally overdrawn would in itself be responsible for £100 of bank charges. £30 perhaps, but I wager there are charges for other missed payments too.

...and, frankly, if someone writes a cheque then it is their own responsibility to ensure that the money is there to honour it, however long it takes to clear. She has spent the money twice. This is not your fault, not your treasurers fault. It is her fault alone. If cash flow was that much of an issue, then she should have paid cash (as an earlier poster noted)

The fact that the cheque was not banked for three weeks constitutes a minor annoyance, nothing else.

.....were I to play the amateur psychotherapist, I would say that her rudeness constitutes transference of other pressures on to you. However, if it's therapy she needs, then she should pay for it herself.

Not by cheque, I would suggest.

ThePregnantHedgeWitch Wed 07-Jan-09 10:39:27

Message withdrawn

daftpunk Wed 07-Jan-09 10:42:09

retiredgoth2;

if that cheque was cashed on the same day that she had 3 or 4 dd's due, that would result in loads of charges.

i agree it's her responsibility to keep an eye on her account, but it's also the responsibilty of the person banking the cheques to do so in a resonable time (good banking practice)

chocolateteapot Wed 07-Jan-09 10:44:27

I'd refer her onto the treasurer, it really isn't your fault here.

Annoying though it is if someone doesn't pay a cheque in for a bit, it isn't rocket science to make up an excel spreadsheet of your bank account and keep track on there, then it doesn't actually matter when the cheque is paid in as you've accounted for it.

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