Can't tell the difference between $0.00 and $500



  • Hi all.  About 6 months ago I was laid off from my job.  Not an issue really, for me; on to bigger and better things. I collected the unemployment while looking for another job, and soon I found another one.  I put that behind me, and life went on. 

    At the beginning of April, I got a letter from the Minnesota Unemployment Office stating that I had been overpaid; because my employer had gracefully paid me through the end of the month.  The letter stated that I had been overpaid $0.00.  I had a laugh at that -- it was a WTF-able letter, like many others.   Here is the state saying I basically did not owe any money, but instead of saying that, they said I was overpaid 0.00.  I promptly forgot about the letter.

    The next month I got another letter saying the state was going to collect the $585 I had been overpaid.  What?  So I called; and asked them to send me a letter explaining exactly why they wanted my money back.  A few days later, I got another letter, explaining (very helpfully) that I had been overpaid $0.00.

    Another phone call; talked to someone who knew what they were doing, and they said they'd research the issue and let me know exactly what was going on.  Two weeks go by.

    Now, another letter from the state.  This time, it said, in different terms and in a different format, that I had been overpaid by --- $0.00

    Now I have to call tomorrow and listen to someone there explain to me why $0.00 and $585 are the same amount.  Or, explain to me why I keep getting a letter saying I'd been overpaid; and how I can remit $0.00 back to them.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     



  •  Write them a check for $0.00?



  • @dogbrags said:

    (...) and how I can remit $0.00 back to them.

    I would send them a US$ 0.00 check, just for the lulz.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @rpjs said:

     Write them a check for $0.00?

    Sent via registered mail. With a copy of their demand. And a request/demand for them to stop sending them.



  • Just write them a check for $ so they can have an imaginary dollar for their imaginary overpayment.



  • @PJH said:

    @rpjs said:
    Write them a check for $0.00?
    Sent via registered mail. With a copy of their demand. And a request/demand for them to stop sending them.
    Please do this. And keep us posted.



  • @PJH said:

    @rpjs said:

     Write them a check for $0.00?

    Sent via registered mail. With a copy of their demand. And a request/demand for them to stop sending them.
     

    I'd walk to their office, give them the cheque for $0.00 and request a reciept.

     



  • A few months back I got fed up with my mobile phone provider (cellphone, for our US friends) after a string of WTFs. I had been on a pre-paid plan so never got any bills, but after I left I got my first mailed communication from them - a bill each month for the next three months, each for -$20. Unfortunately, none of the payment methods available handle negative amounts.

    One day I might submit the whole saga (14 WTFs across two organisations) as a sidebar post, but the first draft was almost two pages long so it needs a fair bit of editing.

     



  • Just have a laugh at the absurdity of the situation. In my experience, DEED usually manages to straighten these type of things out. Government agencies have an (often justly earned) bad rap, but this one usually does a great job of sticking up for the little guy. Of course, their phone support is like tech support, it can take a while to get through the first level to someone who can help with more than "check your caps lock key".

    If you don't manage to get anywhere, log in to your UI account and find the link to contest the $585 overpayment. That will result in a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge (you can attend by phone). The likely outcomes are (in descending order):

       * The action will force a human to look at your records, they'll clear up the mistaken overpayment, and you'll get a letter saying the hearing is canceled and you don't owe any overpayment.

       * The hearing will take place, you'll plead your case, and the Judge will rule that you, the honest joe just trying to earn a living, are entitled to the disputed payments. (MN ALJs have a reputation for favoring the employee, especially in cases like yours where you're back at work already).

       * At some point, someone will discover how and why an erroneous $0.00 overpayment letter was sent, and you'll end up paying back an overpayment.

    Dig through your old job info... if that $585 was part of separation pay, vacation pay, sick pay, etc. you probably have nothing to worry about.



  • @dogbrags said:

    Now I have to call tomorrow and listen to someone there explain to me why $0.00 and $585 are the same amount.  Or, explain to me why I keep getting a letter saying I'd been overpaid; and how I can remit $0.00 back to them.

    Simple you were not overpaid anything, but since you did not respond, you are now liable for $585 in penalties and interest.

     [FWIW: This actually happened with the IRS a few years ago to me...]



  • @TheCPUWizard said:

    @dogbrags said:

    Now I have to call tomorrow and listen to someone there explain to me why $0.00 and $585 are the same amount.  Or, explain to me why I keep getting a letter saying I'd been overpaid; and how I can remit $0.00 back to them.

    Simple you were not overpaid anything, but since you did not respond, you are now liable for $585 in penalties and interest.

     [FWIW: This actually happened with the IRS a few years ago to me...]

     

    Had a similar (though not nearly so tragic) experience with the New York tax department.  WTF #1 was when they lost my IT-2 (it's a special NY form that you submit instead of your W-2, no idea about the history of why they do that) and I had to send it in again.  A month later I got another letter (WTF #2) and thought "oh boy, here we go."  Fortunately, the letter was just informing me that my requested refund had been adjusted from $0.00 to <insert amount here, $16 I think>.  Of course, I had requested the proper refund amount in the first place.  Maybe that part of my return got lost along with my original IT-2.

    I'm curious to hear your story, though.  And now if you'll excuse me, I'd better make sure I don't any interest on that refund.



  • @TheCPUWizard said:

     [FWIW: This actually happened with the IRS a few years ago to me...]
     

    I can beat that. I once accidentally underpaid my gas bill by one cent which was paid to my HOA. After 3 months, the HOA threatened to exercise the lein on my house because I had a balance older than 90 days. A similar thing happened to me with Blockbuster where I dropped off a movie one day late and never returned to Blockbuster for a year, forgetting that I had a pending late fee (they usually apply it the next time you rent a movie). After that I got a call from some collection agency threatening to seek legal action if I didn't pay my balance of $2.25 plus interest, coming to a total of $5.00. I actually saw a hit on my credit rating because of that. Now that Blockbuster is a relic, I don't have to worry about that anymore.



  • @havokk said:

    @PJH said:

    @rpjs said:

     Write them a check for $0.00?

    Sent via registered mail. With a copy of their demand. And a request/demand for them to stop sending them.
     

    I'd walk to their office, give them the cheque for $0.00 and request a reciept.

     

    I'd even tell my current employer I need to take a few hrs off to do this. Also would offer for my employer to come along for kicks and giggles. Make sure to put in a request to double check because if you overpaid you want to make sure you are refunded the overpaid amount.

     


Log in to reply
 

Looks like your connection to What the Daily WTF? was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.