Monday, February 23, 2009

Why can't I?

If you've read Sunny's blog today, you'll know that today we got a letter from the US Treasury informing us they'd made a mistake on last year's taxes.

Of course, when I first saw the letter, let's just say my underwear cost two dollars and a buck-fifty's worth was instantly eaten by my butthole. On top of the extra four hundred the Emergency Room doctors want from me, this was going to be the US Treasury saying that we owe them big time.

Then I saw that, amazingly, the mistake was in our favor. The IRS had forgotten to dot a few i's and cross a few t's and miraculously owed us a couple hundred bucks. Something that's VERY welcome right now to help keep those vampire doctors at bay.

Something bugged me about the letter, though. I read it a few times and realised it was the very flippant and matter-of-fact tone. They said they made a mistake, and it would be corrected in a couple of months or so. You know:

"Yeah, we made a mistake, we'll send you a check when we get around to it."

Now, I want you all to imagine something. I want you to imagine how the IRS would have reacted if the mistake had been in their favor. For a couple hundred dollars they'd have written a few threatening letters, then sent someone around to take my stuff...and they'd tack on all kinds of late fees and penalties. The other thing is it wouldn't matter if it was an honest mistake...they'd treat me like a criminal from day one.

It's the same with banks and all other kinds of financial institutions. Last year we went a dollar overdrawn on our bank account for less than 8 hours. An automatic payment went out, but Sunny's paycheck was deposited a few hours late. The fact we were overdrawn for less than 8 hours didn't stop my bank charging me forty dollars for the privalege.

So, my question is this...why can't I do exactly the same thing to them?

The way I see it is that the US Government has been in debt to me and my wife for well over a year. They took more money than was agreed upon from Sunny's paycheck and kept it for fourteen months.

So they owe us a couple hundred dollars...but why can't I demand a thousand dollars in penalities, another five hundred in miscelaneous fees and have all this set up so they'll have to pay thousands of dollars in legal fees to take me to court if they want to dispute it, which of course will mean them facing off against my TEAM of highly-trained lawyers, which their money paid for in the first place.

Seriously, how come banks and the government get to bend us over when we make a mistake or miss a payment, but when they do the same it's tough shit?


Evan 08 said...

Point taken, but quit yer bitchin... it's money they're proactively returning to you. If you proactively amend a return, they usually don't bend you over.

Paulius said...

This post was meant in a tongue-in-cheek kinda way.

Hell, any time someone wants to give us money, I'm not going to bitch for real