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bestlawn

Know what I think! What do you think? (very long)

bestlawn
16 years ago

A lady who helps me has been exhibiting some strange behaviors since early summer. I'd been baffled and unable to put my finger on a possible cause until today. Won't say what I think because it's dreadful to me, and it means I cannot trust her anymore. So, tell me what you think, and I'll know if I'm on the right track.

The trips she makes for me often means collecting money (or checks) from customers. The last time she collected any was three weeks ago. I asked her, as I often have, to stop and pay a bill out of the money, which was to be $125. When she brought me the balance it was short $25. I asked her about it, and she said she'd paid $150 on the bill. I didn't think anything of it until I spoke with the company this morning. They told me the payment was $125. Oh, brother.

This was a culmination of her ongoing weird behaviors of the past several months. No matter what I paid her, she always wanted more, even if it were just $1 or $2 more. Nothing of any great significance, just always wanted more no matter what I gave her. When she first began helping me three years ago, she didn't have a job. I didnt really know much about her finances except her husband's pension, but I think she was collecting unemployment at the time. Not sure about that at all. We agreed on what she would be paid when she helps here and agreed on an additional amount for pickups, TV setups, and deliveries. Because I appreciate her being so helpful and because gas prices have increased, this spring/summer I began paying $5 more and often made it $10 more just to make sure I gave her a little extra. No amount was ever enough. The thing is, sheÂs had a job for the past year. She is an LPN and earns $28 per hour, which she told me numerous times. She also told me numerous times about all the overtime she worked and the double shifts.

She knew IÂd fallen on hard times ever since I moved October Â06 because ATT never put the recording on the old phone number to redirect callers. So, customers I had not already contacted only reached a disconnected message when they called. She knew all this and even though business wasnÂt all that good, I still paid her extra. I told her at one point this summer, "I pay you fairly plus extra, but you keep asking for more." or "I canÂt afford to pay you $30 to make a delivery just two miles from your house." I stayed confused all summer over her behavior, feeling she was really trying to gouge me. What was most perplexing was she didnÂt act this way before she went back to nursing. Now, sheÂs making lots of money and trying to squeeze every nickel out of me.

She lost her job six weeks ago. When she paid that bill for me, sheÂd been off work for three weeks. Learning this morning that she lied about the payment, I am trying very hard to figure out why she so badly needed a measly $25 after being off work for only three weeks. This past year of working, sheÂs made no dramatic changes in her circumstances  no new house, no new furniture, no new car (already had a car & insurance payments), no cruises or other expensive vacations (she drove to Kentucky a couple times), no big ticket items at all that I can see.

I really don't want to jump the gun and think the worst, but doesn't it all sound fishy to you? Do you think I should ask her? I canÂt help thinking if she owed some major back taxes or other debt that absorbed her income, she would have told me about them. SheÂs told me lots of her personal business.

Comments (28)

  • gardenspice
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Yeppers, sounds like it could be some addiction issue, but regardless, she stole from you. Time to find a new helper.
    best of luck.

  • kathi_mdgd
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Sounds to me like she's found a way to use you and she doesn't think you realize it/and or care.I'd call her on it and see what she has to say.If you don't,she will continue to do it..JMO
    Kathi

  • Happy_Go_Lucky_Gayle
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Do you have gambling in your area? If not maybe it is drugs.

    I'd let her go.

    Gayle

  • grammahony
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I'd question her too. Maybe she has a gambling problem. But, I'd be finding new help. It sounds like you've been more than fair.
    Leslie

  • mrsjjb
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Whether you confront her or not or allow her to continue working as your helper, I wouldn't leave her with ANY of my money - cash or otherwise.

    She's shown you she is not to be trusted.

    No matter her circumstances, if she stole from you, it's wrong. There are lots of people who are laid off, out of work, etc. That does not give ANY of us the right to steal from others.

    I'm sure you've heard the old saying, "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me."

    And lastly, listen to your gut/inner voice. I've been told it's your angel talking to you.

  • ronf_gw
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I'm sure curious about why she lost the nursing job. What do they know that you don't?
    Ron

  • grammahony
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    So true Ron. With the shortage of nurses, somthing is rotten in Denmark. Maybe she had her hand in the 'drug till'.

  • nodakgal
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    What is wrong with people???
    I'm smelling something too and it STINKS!
    I think I'd have to let her go myself. Either that or specifiy checks only for paying bills.
    She's taking advantage of you Mallory. I'm sure you know that.
    I hope you get something figured out.

  • uxorial
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I would also like to know why she lost a nursing job. Was she stealing from patients or from coworkers' purses? Got caught doing drugs? Do you know for a fact that she even had this job or LPN license? It all could be a line of bunk.

    In any case, you are uncomfortable (rightly so) having her continue to work for you. You don't owe her anything.

    One of these times she will just not even stop to pay a bill and will just keep all the money (and you may not know about it for weeks). Let her go before she puts you in debt or ruins your business. There are plenty of honest people who would be happy to earn what you are paying this woman.

  • LorifromUtah
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    What her problem might be is not the issue.
    The problem is you are wary of her and for good reason.
    From how I read your circumstances you could have done these 'jobs' yourself and broke even. She is costing you money and cannot explain it.

    Don't you require her to get receipts when the bills are paid?

    Get rid of her.
    Do the job yourself or hire another person.

    Stop wasting time and money figuring her out.

    Lori

  • mariend
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Your are a professional person who owns their own business. Do not allow the people who work for you to pay bills, handle cash etc regardless how inconvenient it is for you. You need to let this person go, and if she has any keys to your property, get the locks changes. In fact under the circumstances, she should not even be on your property, unless she needs your services. If you need help, go to either the High School or College and they will have students they have investigaged to work for you. Just check age and make sure they have a DL and Insurance. Being a senior citizen, and observing many, I truthfully would have the young people work for me. Many seniors have issues they refuse to acknowledge, where it be money or health. Don't let her "cry" threaten, or beg. For some reason she feels she needs more money and will take it any way or any way she can and sees no problems. Be firm Be Smart Be Business

  • foggyj
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    You two USED to be great team until.....SHE screwed it up. I would probably say that to her. Catching her in that lie is reason enough not to ever trust her again, and cause for termination. I know it's a hard spot to be in. You know what good worker she WAS. She has a problem ,and you don't need it. Hire someone else.

  • cate52
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I'm sorry for your disappointment in this person.. It's so hard when you've trusted someone and liked working with them -- then to find out that they've betrayed your trust.
    I would think with your attitude towards your workers that it won't be hard to replace her. However, as others have advised -- I wouldn't let the new person 'make cash payments without getting/giving receipts.'

  • stephmc72
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Well it obviously goes deeper than this one note. But techincally if you've agreed to pay someone to do a service for you, you've hired them. But that's beside the point here...

    Either way, good luck! :-)

  • orie
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    You are WAY too kind! Time to find someone else. Doesn't matter what she's doing with the $$$, she's stolen from you and lied and...to me... that's enough to say "See ya". Don't keep her around. If she's that desperate for cash, who knows what she may be capable of...

  • lisa_fla
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Not only did she steal from you, but she could have been hoping for an opportunity to steal from your customers as well.

  • nycefarm_gw
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Do you know anything about her "employment"? Are you sure she even HAD another job? It sounds to me like she is making stuff up, especially to make herself look good. A symptom of drug abuse or just plain delusions...
    Sorry you have to go through this, it isn't fair to you.

  • Kathsgrdn
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Nurses who work on staff do not get jealous of agency nurses' pay. We could care less because they are there to fill an empty slot and believe me, we thank them for coming in to work a shift with us because it would've been a heck of a lot worse for US if they hadn't. I think she's lying to you plain and simple.

    I also don't see how she could be working all that overtime at a nursing job and working for you too. When did she have the time?

  • golfergrrl
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    "to stop and pay a bill out of the money, which was to be $125. When she brought me the balance it was short $25. I asked her about it, and she said she'd paid $150 on the bill. I didn't think anything of it until I spoke with the company this morning. They told me the payment was $125. Oh, brother."

    " as she called in the payment after she got home that day."

    Oh brother, I don't get it. If she had $125 cash to pay on a bill, but said she paid $150, then she would have $150 in her pocket, cuz she "called in the payment" which means what? She never gave anyone any cash?

  • bestlawn
    Original Author
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Jennmonkey, the $30 comment was in the context of the story - that she was always asking for more. I didn't say anything like the rest of what you mention. I don't know where you got it from or why you used it to defend Lori. Lori didn't even say anything like that. I said it to the woman because I paid her $25 for the run, but she was asking for more. There is nothing in this story about the size of jobs. Nor is what Lori indicated that I am wasting money and time when I can do them myself. It came from nowhere except her own intention.

    NyceFarm, you and Uxorial asked the same thing, which is a good question. Because I never saw her at work or saw a paystub, all I can say is I have called her in the wee hours of the morning only because I knew she was at work. At her house, her husband answers the phone if I call after 11pm to let me know he hates calls at that hour LOL. I wouldn't dare call their house at 1 or 2 in the morning. A couple times she came around 3 or 4am to pick up that morning's deliveries. That's the time she got off work on those nights and came here so as not to have to make the trip again. I'm only 3 or 4 miles off her route, whereas she lives quite a ways away. It was better for her to come at that hour than to come back this way at 8am. Also, she directed me to a website for certification last year. She needed me to download some forms because she didn't have a computer. I realize none of that is proof though. So, I guess the answer is I really don't know, but I can't see all the charades either.

    LindaKathy, nope she didn't pay cash. She paid by debit card. I expected she would stop at the place and pay, but she preferred not having to stop. I wouldn't ask anyone to use their credit card, but that she did was fine with me. She called with the confimation number and brought the balance of the money the next day, less the $150. This was three weeks ago. Is that you were asking?

    Kathleen, that makes a lot of sense. As far as being tired, she fell alseep on my sofa or laid down in the boys' room several times after getting off work. One morning, she got off at 7 and was supposed to come here to pickup an order. It was to be delivered at that funeral home two miles from her house. She didn't show up and called around 8 to tell me she fell asleep in the nursing home's parking lot. I could understand that happening, knowing how often I work through the night. However, I don't want to give the impression that she was working so much for me. As I mentioned, business was way down the last year, so I didn't have to call her all that steadily.

  • jennmonkey
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I was just trying to point out how it could have been a misunderstanding, but nevermind, I'm not getting into that.

    Anyways, I don't get it either. If you had her pick up checks and cash, and pay the bill out of that money, then how is it that she ended up paying with a debit card? What balance did she give/show you that showed she had spent $150? Are you thinking she got the remaining $25 out of an ATM with the debit card? If she did use a debit card, couldn't you just call the bank and see all the transactions?

  • bestlawn
    Original Author
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    The trips she makes for me often means collecting money (or checks) from customers. The last time she collected any was three weeks ago. I asked her, as I often have, to stop and pay a bill out of the money, which was to be $125.

    She did not have my card.
    She paid the bill with her own card.

  • heather_on
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Kathleen is right. Nurses wouldn't be jealous. Agency nurses don't necessarily make more....they don't get benefits which count for a lot. They also wouldn't lose their jobs for leaving the floor. She might have received a warning though if she left the floor without telling someone she was going. If one hospital didn't want her, another would.....here we could pick and choose where we want, everyone needs nurses. There is more to this than she is telling you. I have a gut feeling it does have to do with money......perhaps sticky fingers?

  • tami_ohio
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Mallory, is this the same person who always had to use a customer's restroom? If so, I think I would really be worried! Time to let her go.

    Tami

  • bestlawn
    Original Author
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    LOL Yeah, Tami. She walked in here this morning and headed straight for the bathroom. Yep, time to go.

    I made a few phone calls today. Gonna have a few people put notices on their church bulletin boards. Marie, I once thought young people would be the better idea, especially since 19" & 20" TVs have to be carried. However, I have generally found them to be undependable and unmotivated in many cases. People 40 and over have worked out best. I'll just have to see who inquires, I guess.

  • Lee
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    You wrote: "The trips she makes for me often means collecting money (or checks) from customers. The last time she collected any was three weeks ago. I asked her, as I often have, to stop and pay a bill out of the money, which was to be $125.
    She did not have my card.
    She paid the bill with her own card."

    ****
    Perhaps I am misunderstanding what you meant but that comes across as if you are co-mingling your business expenses with her personal funds. Is that true?

    She picked up at least $150 cash payment(s) from a customer(s); i.e., accounts receivable.

    She then payed one of your bills with HER personal debit card; i.e., her personal money. If that bill was for your company, it was accounts payable. If that bill was personal it appears you are co-mingling business and personal funds.

    Don't you use invoices? Don't you issue and receive at least receipts?

    That is not good business practice. What does your tax preparer say about these activities?

    In any event, I would not be paying bills of $125. in cash without (at the very least) getting a receipt. It is always much better to pay bills with a check which provides a permanent record.

    Have you ever watched Judge Judy?

  • bestlawn
    Original Author
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    ThunderboltLee, businesses receive invoices. Customers who are not a business receive receipts. Copies of both are on file. I receive a salary from the business and do what I want with my money. No, you cannot see them, as that almost seems to be your next question. I do not owe you any accounting of my business accounts. What does it have to do with my question?

  • Lee
    16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I was trying to be helpful. In small businesses, it is easy for 'casual employees' (helper is the word you use) to become casual friends and with that lots of personal information can be exchanged.

    As you said, you have observed ongoing weird behaviors for months now. You supplied good examples of ongoing weird behavior and actions, and I can see them, too.

    Your response was interesting and very illuminating, too.

    As to your question: "...doesn't it all sound fishy to you?" Yes, it all sounds fishy.

    Have a good day!

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