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#2098567 - 09/14/16 09:49 PM Vietnamese customer helping her community...
Daisy Doodle Offline
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Southern U.S.
We have a long time Vietnamese customer, extremely hardworking. She is a 'go to' person for our Vietnamese community. She does accounting and tax prep for multiple, multiple nail salons. She provides translation and notary services to her community. She runs a Laundromat. All that is fine. Where I am having a little heartburn is that as an additional service to her many clients, she will accept cash in payment for airline tickets, and charge the tickets to her American Express card. Often these are whole families flying internationally and it adds up. She told her account officer, who has known her for many years, that the only benefit she gets from this are the reward points. It's not a business per se. What are everyone's thoughts on monitoring this activity? We are trying to untangle everything she does and get business accounts established but the cash to American Express payments is kind of falling outside the box.

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#2098610 - 09/15/16 12:39 PM Re: Vietnamese customer helping her community... Daisy Doodle
Elwood P. Dowd Offline
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In essence, the individual is acting as an unlicensed travel agent, running business proceeds through a personal or unrelated business account. You have no way of monitoring the activity.

Everything else is just the details.
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#2098617 - 09/15/16 01:17 PM Re: Vietnamese customer helping her community... Daisy Doodle
Daisy Doodle Offline
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How is it a business if she doesn't charge for the service Ken?

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#2098618 - 09/15/16 01:20 PM Re: Vietnamese customer helping her community... Daisy Doodle
edAudit Offline
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edAudit
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He did not say that it was a profitable business smile
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#2098621 - 09/15/16 01:30 PM Re: Vietnamese customer helping her community... Daisy Doodle
HappyGilmore Offline
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Posts: 19,340
Pulling people out of the ditc...
it boils down easily...

1) do you believe her story that she is doing that
2) if yes to 1, why do you feel you would need to monitor
3) if no to 1, are the needs/attempts to monitor worth the cost and time versus what is made on the account

it is not illegal to make airline reservations for others, especially if those others have no credit cards to make their own
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#2098623 - 09/15/16 01:50 PM Re: Vietnamese customer helping her community... Daisy Doodle
Daisy Doodle Offline
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Southern U.S.
I think I do believe her. One reason is that I had a personal conversation not too long ago with an employee in a nail salon who was talking about her families first visit back to Vietnam since they immigrated. It was very expensive to take the whole family so it was a huge treat and one that would not happen again for a long time.

I say monitor, but I don't mean specifically monitor. She alerts for us, that is why she is in front of us pretty much monthly. So we need to be comfortable with her activity.

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#2098673 - 09/15/16 04:03 PM Re: Vietnamese customer helping her community... Daisy Doodle
MT2002 Offline
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Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 23
I used to know some people who would NEVER bring cash to group dinners, always opting to pay the entire bill with their credit card and then just collect other folks' payment for their respective meal in cash. They did this to build points/rewards on their credit card. This behavior died out not long after P2P payments.

I grew up in a heavily populated Vietnamese area (CA) and most recently immigrated want nothing more in their travels than to go back to Vietnam for vacation.

Your customer being a professional service provider and working with numerous nail salons, I can't get the whole "Breaking Bad" scenes out of my head.

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#2098675 - 09/15/16 04:15 PM Re: Vietnamese customer helping her community... Daisy Doodle
Daisy Doodle Offline
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Okay, I never watched that show although I know the scenario was a high school teacher who made and sold meth. Help me with the connection on that.

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#2098685 - 09/15/16 04:31 PM Re: Vietnamese customer helping her community... Daisy Doodle
Daisy Doodle Offline
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Had to look it up but now I think you are comparing the nail salons to Pollos trucks--the food trucks in Breaking Bad. Lucky for us, the cash is not into that kind of stratosphere.

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#2098689 - 09/15/16 04:37 PM Re: Vietnamese customer helping her community... Daisy Doodle
MT2002 Offline
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Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 23
Actually, you can google/youtube "breaking bad teaching money laundering". In the scene, the high school teacher's partner-in-crime is being taught how to launder money through a nail salon (which just so happens to be owned and operated by Vietnamese). The man showing him how basic money laundering can be done is their sleazy lawyer.

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#2098700 - 09/15/16 05:10 PM Re: Vietnamese customer helping her community... Daisy Doodle
Daisy Doodle Offline
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TY, I will take a look.

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