Pay Day Jackpot: A $1.3 Million Direct Deposit Mistake


Imagine checking your bank account on payday to find a little bonus cash in there - to the tune of about $1.3 million!

That's exactly what happened to a British supermarket warehouse employee - but instead of taking the cash and hi-tailing it to a remote island, the loyal guy returned the money.

Stephen Foster was in shock when his girlfriend discovered the mistake. The 31-year-old's pay slip showed an astronomical salary stipend of nearly $2.3 million dollars! After taxes were taken out, $1.3 million was deposited into his account.

Without hesitation, Foster immediately contacted his company and explained the mistake. Within hours the money was back in corporate hands, and Foster got a second bonus for his honesty - a case of beer and a bottle of champagne. Not exactly an equal exchange, but the five-year employee gets high marks in the honor department.

While the idea of keeping such a big unexpected bonus sounds like the perfect holiday treat - most employers are entitled to take back such a windfall if it's indeed an error. Check those direct deposit agreements you signed - they usually state that employers reserve the right to correct any deposit errors without even telling you.

Banks have their own rules too - giving direct depositors five days to correct errors. That means Foster probably did the right thing by informing his employer about the error. An amount that big wouldn't have gone unnoticed on the books - and that would have been one heck of an overdraft penalty had he withdrawn the cash.

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MARIA P

I think was enough money worth going to jail over. I would have waited a long time to see if mistake was going to be caught. I would have only spent what my normal paycheck was after taxes and maybe lived off the interest something that could not be taken from me.

May 26 2012 at 1:15 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Charm

Personally, his company should have paid him a month's living expenses quietly in gratitude for his quick notification of the financial error! A case of beer and a bottle of champagne is repugnant even if the guy is a redneck in the truest sense of the word. Everyone needs financial assistance and this was a great opportunity lost by this company...

December 17 2009 at 1:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
TED

DONT DARE CALL SOMEONE A A--HOLE FOR THERE OPPINION NO MATTER HOW RACIST OR INHUMAN IT IS ON A AOL FORUM BUT AOL WILL LET PEOPLE LIKE gothicttt and goldduo12 POST THERE SMUT ON EVERY FORUM ON AOL COME ON AOL DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT

December 16 2009 at 3:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
RONNIE

THE BANK TELLER'S ARE GETTING VERY RUDE THESE DAYS,I ASKED THE TELLER TO CHECK MY BALANCE,AND SHE PUSHED ME...LOL

December 16 2009 at 3:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Dan

Hate to think that I have a dishonest bone in my body, and since never being tempted in this manner, I am not sure what I would have done. One thing is for sure the money would have set in my account for along time, and then if no one ever came to me about it ,( not sure what might have happened.) But even if they traced it back , it wasn't stealing if you didn't have anything to do with it.

December 16 2009 at 2:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Harvey

We should make a law that you get at least half of what ever you return when there is a mistake. I'll bet they would be a little more careful and I'll bet that it would encourage a lot more people to be honest.

December 16 2009 at 2:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Keith

I didn't get nearly as much, Mine was for 763, 950.00 when it should have been for 76.39. When I saw it I took it right back to my boss, And he thought I was bitching cause I was short on my check and wouldn't even look at it. Then he caught the mess up, I guess it happens a lot.

December 16 2009 at 1:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Smartone

If the guy was thinking, he should have not said a word but not spent the money. Left the money in his account collecting interest. When they found out the mistake they would take the money back and you get the interest on all that money. It's a win win.

December 16 2009 at 1:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mejia

Wow, what an honestly guy. I hate to say it but if I had got that money I would have moved it to an over seas account, invested in stock, start an annuity, and a College CD fund for my children. Wow!!!

December 16 2009 at 1:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
kreno

I would be in shock as well. Not due to the $$, but rather, what the hell was my girlfriend doing snooping around my private finances?

December 16 2009 at 12:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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