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Attorney & Counselor at Law
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I have an employee that told me to make a check to our painter,

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I have an employee that told me to make a check to our painter, Alpha and Omega Painting, it was common for this employee to manage this contractor and they lived close to one another so he would take his checks to him. The name he gave me of the painters company name was a lie and he tried to cash the check. The first place would not cash it so two days later he went to his local county and got a business license with Alpha and Omega Painting, then took the check to the local liqour store with new business license in hand and cashed the check. It was for $4,500.00 It turns out that he had been taking a few hundred off all other checks the entire time. We're a small business and it's me fault there weren't systems in place but like many others I trusted him. Now the package store is wanting me to refund them the money b/c I put a stop pay on the check before it cleared my account. check creation date 1/12/2009 business license creation date 1/14/2009 State of Georgia thanks, ben.
Hi Ben - I do not think you have an obligation to pay the package store.

The store charges money for cashing checks. They are professional check cashers and must be held to that standard.

Business checks of the type you describe are meant for deposit only, so the funds and payee can be traced. No bank would agree to cash such a check, unless it was for an existing account holder (with enough money currently on deposit to cover in case the check is fraudulent).

The package store should have known better then to cash any check made out to a business, much less one for $4500. Also, the business license date should have been a red flag.
Unfortunately, the store may have to take the financial hit for this, but it is their store that helped allow the fraud to happen. The package store may try to sue you one day, but I think you have a good case. You did the right thing by placing a stop payment.

Good Luck!
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