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Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 102601
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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I was sent a check in the mail from a structured settlement.

Customer Question

I was sent a check in the mail from a structured settlement. In error, they sent me the full amount. I had previously sold a portion yo J G Wentworth. Am I liable for this error, do I have to send the portion back to the insurance company?
JA: What state are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Tennessee
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: They sent me a letter and told me to send them a check for the amount
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Ely replied 3 months ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. You may also be offered a phone call, but those don’t come from me and are offered by the website and you are under no obligation to accept.

That depends on the following:

1) When did they send the check?

2) When did you deposit it?

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
They sent it in the beginning the week of July 10th and I deposited it in the 10th, my birthday.
Expert:  Ely replied 3 months ago.

Thank you. I am afraid that while you do not HAVE to give it back, they can SUE for it if you do not.

This is called unjust enrichment. The elements of an unjust enrichment claim are: 1) "[a] benefit conferred upon the defendant by the plaintiff"; 2) "appreciation by the defendant of such benefit"; and 3) "acceptance of such benefit under such circumstances that it would be inequitable for him to retain the benefit without payment of the value thereof." The most significant requirement of an unjust enrichment claim is that the benefit to the defendant be unjust. Freeman Indus. v. Eastman Chem. Co., 172 S.W.3d 512, 525 (Tenn.2005) (citations omitted) (quoting Paschall's, Inc. v. Dozier, 219 Tenn. 45, 407 S.W.2d 150, 155 (1966)). "

And the statute of limitations has not run out yet, meaning they can sue within 3 YEARS of the deposit.

So if they ask for it back within 3 years, one may wish to give it back, or they can file a suit (it would be up to them).

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Expert:  Ely replied 2 months ago.
Hello again. This is a courtesy check in to see if you needed anything else in regards ***** ***** question because you never responded or replied positively. I am simply touching base. Let me know. Thanks!