Hot answers tagged

72

David Schwartz's answer is great, I just wanted to add that since you have credit card debt, that $1,500 in rent could cost you a lot more due to interest. Average credit card interest rate is ~16%, that's $20/month in interest on $1,500 and more each month as it compounds. If you are carrying a balance from month to month on a credit card I suggest you do ...


59

Assuming you're in the US, you can't do that. The IRS doesn't value your time, they value your revenue and actual expenses. For your personal record keeping you can call it whatever you want, but for tax-purposes time you give away is irrelevant.


47

There is no right or wrong answer to this question. It's really about how much you are willing to, are expected to, or should help your family. You could certainly gift the $1,500 to your family and you could also rightfully insist on an immediate full reimbursement from pooled funds. I'd suggest you try to have honest conversations with the rest of your ...


45

My question is what more can I do to ensure this doesn't happen again. Credit monitoring services can be helpful at detecting things like this early, but they can't actually prevent them, clerical errors will persist. Shouldn't the hospital be penalized for ruining my credit over this 7 month period. I never received bills from them for the outstanding ...


36

Years ago I did some free work for a non-profit and I asked my accountant if I could deduct that effort as an expense. He explained why I couldn't like this: If you want to deduct it, then invoice them at your regular price, and after they pay you, donate the exact amount back to their charity. Then you can deduct the full amount, but, of course you'll ...


22

I got to work on overdraft class action suits with many of the largest banks in the US. Every bank we analyzed data for batch processed transactions at the end of the night, and posted credits first, then debits from high to low, with some having sub-categories for debits, ie ACH/POS/ATM/Checks where Checks often get processed first among the debits. Your ...


16

From Amazon's Site: "If an item is subject to sales tax in the state to which the order is shipped, tax is generally calculated on the total selling price of each individual item." I'm going to trust a company of this size has this correct. Shipping address.


16

You have misunderstood the issue. since we're now paying electricity separately, shouldn't we be paying less rent as now the electricity component of the rent is now not being supplied by the landlord/management. You are paying less rent. The landlord told you to pay the meter, and then reduce the rent you pay by that much. So if you put fifty pounds ...


15

There are a few potential downsides but they are minor: If you forget to make the payment the interest hit the following month could be significant. With many cards the new charges will be charged interest from the start if the previous payment was late/missed. Just make sure you don't forget to pay the entire bill. If the $5K in monthly bills is a large ...


15

First and foremost, your hesitation is commendable. I think your quality of asking before doing is appreciated. I also think you should approach your siblings the same way. There are are a few things to consider when evaluating the situation: Your father left with a debt to be paid to you. In his absence, he left money, so it's reasonable to assume that ...


13

Unfortunately you don't. Next time you will know not to agree to any dental procedure without having a quote from your insurance provider. Decent dentists will call up the insurance and get that quote pre-approved for you, and if your dentist doesn't do that - switch (again...). All you can do now is just tell everyone and everywhere (including yelp) how ...


13

Did you have an agreement with the company, in advance, that you were performing a service for them at a stipulated rate? Else, your "work" was pro-bono, charity, free, whatever you want to call it. Too bad, so sad. On the other hand, if you did suffer demonstrable damages as a result of their error, you could try and pursue it in court, but, 2 hours of ...


13

Say you have a $2000 credit card bill due two weeks from today. If you are paid every other week, it's today's check that will pay it. Why not just get it off your desk? You can't spend it on anything else, so it's not really on hand as liquid cash to use. Much of my life, savings had a 5% rate of return. So, $100/yr or $2 per week on this money. If you ...


11

Several things to do: Change your bank. $2 for a check? Why?? When shopping for a new bank: ask for a free checking account. College students can get free checking in almost any bank. At least the first box of checks will be free, which will give you enough checks for the next several years (I'm still not half done with the box I got from WaMu 5 years ago). ...


11

The simple answer is to not close your American bank accounts - or if you have already done so, open one. Make sure it allows for internet banking, and use it to pay all your bills. Periodically move some money from your Canadian account to your US account to cover the bills. I have done this between Canada and the UK for fifteen years now. An alternative is ...


11

The hospital has done what they can do in terms of repairing the damage; 30 days is reasonable given reporting frequency. No permanent harm has been done in terms of your credit. Further, since this is a medical collection, it didn't do a whole lot of damage in the first place; many credit scoring algorithms do not consider medical collections at all or ...


10

Firstly, it isn't so generous. It is a win-win, but the bank doesn't have to mail me a free box of checks with my new account, or offer free printing to compete for my business. They already have the infrastructure to send out checks, so the actual cost for my bank to mail a check on my behalf is pretty minimal. It might even save them some cost and ...


10

Collections companies buy debt for a fraction of the face value of the debt (as little as 5-7 cents on the dollar), and you can often settle debt for a fraction of the face amount (perhaps 10-25 cents on the dollar). But there are several considerations. Do you owe the debt (is it a legitimate debt), can you afford to pay the debt, what is the age of the ...


9

These numbers are way for the company to identify the transaction. It's never a bad idea to store them. If you do have to speak with someone again it's often pretty convenient to just give them this number, it allows the company rep to pull up the information fairly quickly. Most of my confirmation numbers are emailed to me so I just hit archive instead of ...


9

Apparently it's based on either the address of the seller or vendor or your shipping address; from the AccurateTax.com blog post Destination and Origin Based Sales Tax: ... a few states have laws that are origin-based, where products that are shipped to the customer are taxed based on the location of the business itself. As of this writing, these states ...


9

It's a bad idea but not because of the reasons you list... You can dispute a charge and get it reversed, that has nothing to do with whether it has been paid or not. I wouldn't put a credit card payment on auto payment for a different reason - manually making a payment forces me to see the statement for fraudulent charges. Imagine someone made a ...


9

I think your first step is to be asking for an itemized billing as to exactly what services they claim to have rendered in the half hour that would result in that sort of charges. These days a lot of medical providers have outrageously high rates if you are not a member of a medical plan that has negotiated rates with the provider. I've heard of instances ...


9

This is a legal question, really. If the bill was in her name and if they had no agreement about this, it's fairly clear-cut that it is the ex-girlfriend's responsibility. Small claims court generally uses a standard of 'reasonableness', so the judgment can go in either direction. Your son needs to be very clear he expected the ex to cancel the cable once ...


9

You should start by calling the clinic and asking them to tell you how the visit was coded. Some clinics have different billing codes based on the complexity of the visit. If you have one thing you are seeing the doctor about, that could be coded differently than if you have 4 things you are seeing the doctor about. In fact, even if you are there just for ...


8

A) go directly to the companies (that have to pay) and tell them to draft from my account Make sure you know how to stop this feature, so that they don't keep pulling from your bank account. Some people use an automatic billing to a bank account or credit card to pay their gym membership, then forget to turn it off even after they stop going. Best for ...


8

When calling companies about their errors, I usually close the call with the question "How can I get compensation for the costs I made during this call?". Almost every company I ever dealt with have some kind of department for this which can help you get a compensation. Most of the time they will refund at least your phone bill for the call. Sometimes they ...


8

Yes, you can pay for your wife's medical bills out of your HSA. From IRS Publication 969, Distributions from an HSA: Qualified medical expenses are those incurred by the following persons. You and your spouse. All dependents you claim on your tax return. Any person you could have claimed as a dependent on your return except that: ...


8

If you've got the money to pay the bill today, do it. They are giving you a 25% discount if you do. You won't find an investment that will beat that. Let's look at the details of your scheme. Instead of paying $1696 today, you decide that you will pay $2261 over 60 months, or $37.68 per month. You also decide to invest $1696 today, and expect to get 6% ...


8

Some doctors will give folks who are not covered by insurance a price break. If that describes you, you could ask. But if you didn't discuss the price in advance, that isn't the doctor's fault, any more than it would be the mechanic's fault if you asked for auto service without getting an estimate first. Consider it a cheap lesson in not making assumptions....


8

As DJClayworth's answer explains, the offer the rental management has made ought to leave you paying the same total amount for rent+electricity: the idea is that the "all inclusive price" stays the same, and you pay some of that price to the electricity company and the rest to the landlord. However, you should be aware of the following downsides to the ...


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