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Bank Deposit Error and Statute of Limitations

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Question: 
A person makes out a deposit slip at the ATM to deposit $3,000.00 into their bank account. The ATM system immediately credits their account for the $3,000.00. They also receive credit for the $3,000.00 when the deposit transaction is retrieved from the machine. They don't notice for a few days until they check their online banking that $3,000.00 was credited to their account twice. Upon looking at the statement, it shows that there were two $3,000.00 deposits in the account. The thought is naturally that the error will be detected and the amount withdrawn. It has now been fourteen (14) months and has shown up on two bank statements. The questions: 1) Is there any law covering whether or not the money becomes the property of the account holder after a certain amount of time, and if so, what rights does the account holder have? 2) The account gets closed say after ninety (90) days, and the error is still not detected, but they find it fourteen (14) months down the road. Would they be able to pursue legal action?
Answer: 

Yes - it is called unjust enrichment. It is not the customer's money. The statute of limitations to recoup the money from the customer will be based on State law which can range from 2 to 6 years in the States that I am familiar with.

First published on BankersOnline.com 6/6/11

First published on 06/06/2011

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