ATM windfalls expose legal grey area

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by Ben W, Sep 8, 2005.

  1. Ben W

    Ben W
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2002
    Messages:
    8,868
    Likes Received:
    0
    The banking ombudsman says there are no clear-cut laws governing what should happen to money wrongly dispensed from ATMs.

    More than 100 Darwin residents are thought to have received $50 notes instead of $20 notes from a Commonwealth Bank machine at Berrimah on Darwin's outskirts.

    The bank is planning to contact people to ask for the money back.

    The ombudsman says it is prepared to investigate any disputes over the money on a case-by-case basis.

    The bank's Brian Fitzgerald says security staff probably loaded the notes incorrectly.

    "The automatic teller machines are all online and we have a record of every transaction, every customer, how many notes were dispensed, and we will start contacting those customers that used the machine today, seeking reimbursement of the additional funds that they have received," he said.

    The Territory's director of consumer affairs, Gary Clements, says banks can tell who has used a faulty machine.

    "If you went and purchased something from a store and handed over an extra $100 more than you thought you had, you'd want that money back," he said.

    "And it's really the same situation for a bank. If you haven't received it in the proper manner then you are not entitled to it."

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/newsitems/200509/s1456299.htm
     
  2. carpro

    carpro
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2004
    Messages:
    20,589
    Likes Received:
    256
    Good luck to the bank. :rolleyes:
     
  3. TexasSky

    TexasSky
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    When that happens in the US, the bank just reverses the transactions off the same account numbers involved.
     
  4. Johnv

    Johnv
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2001
    Messages:
    21,321
    Likes Received:
    0
    TS beat me to it in the last response. A bank can simply reverse out the additional sum. If an account holder tried to sue to get that reversal undone, they'd be out of luck, because the account holder would be unable to prove that they sufferred damages, or deserved the additional funds.

    Additionally, there's a concept in the law called "unjust enrichment" that prevents one person from being unjustly enriched at another's expense (in layman's terms, a person cannot receive money or other property through no effort of his own, at the expense of another). Under the concept of unjust enrichment, this is not a grey area in the law at all.
     
  5. Ben W

    Ben W
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2002
    Messages:
    8,868
    Likes Received:
    0
    Sounds like an interesting law!

    We have capital gains tax which tends to annoy a few people! [​IMG]
     
  6. Johnv

    Johnv
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2001
    Messages:
    21,321
    Likes Received:
    0
    The concept of unjust enrichment isn't by any means obscure, it's quite apparant.

    For example: You seel your vehicle to another individual for, say $500.00. You realize after he takes possession that in the glove box was an envelope containing $3000.00 in savings bonds that you've been keeping. The concept of unjust enrichment states that if the car buyer kept the savings bonds, he's be guilty of unjust enrichment, thus requiring the bonds to be returned to you.
     
  7. TexasSky

    TexasSky
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    On a side note - since this is a Christian Board - let's remember that not returning that money is a violation of God's law.
     
  8. Johnv

    Johnv
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2001
    Messages:
    21,321
    Likes Received:
    0
    Amen, TS.
     

Share This Page

Loading...