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closed acct NSF equity line

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What is the name of your state?

During the refinance of my house, my equity line would be closed. I wrote a check on Sat, 9/27 on the equity line account before I knew the date of closing. I debated in front of the person I was paying about which account to use because I didn't know when it would close. I called the person I wrote the check to on Tuesday, 9/30 after getting a closing date from escrow, and told him that I wrote it on an account that would be closing sooner than I anticipated and could I please give him a check from another account. He said that he had already deposited the check on Sat 9/27. Based on the date he told me he deposited it I assumed it would have time to clear. But I called my equity line bank anyway to check, and I was told the checks had 30 days to clear. I called escrow and they said the title company was witholding $14,500 to ensure the lien is satisfied and all checks go through. I told escrow about the $150 check and the escrow officer said that she would tell the title company that a check for $150 was coming. The title company witheld $14,500 until Oct 6. and then released the funds to escrow supposedly saying no check went through.

Unfortunately, all these assurances were incorrect. The bank closed my equity line on Oct 2 and did not honor the check that was deposited. It reached them on Oct 3. The title company did not hold my money to make sure checks would clear in the future but only until my line was closed. The title company says now that escrow never told them about a check or they would have included it in the payoff amount. My line was closed on the 2nd but I did not get access to my $14,500 until the 7th.

I based my decisions on what I was told by escrow and my bank. If I had not been told these things by the bank and escrow I would have taken other actions, like giving the guy another check or increasing my payoff amount to cover the check I knew I had written.

Now the person getting the check that was returned wants fees for five checks that he bounced on October 6, 7 and 8 because my funds were returned.

What is the ethical thing to do? What am I legally liable for?


Senior Member
I don't believe you're legally liable for his bank bounce fees. He should not have been writing checks on an uncleared amount in the first place - that's HIS responsibility, not yours.

Ethically ?? Guess it depends on what kind of relationship you wish to maintain, if any, with this person. Certainly you owe the $150, but beyond that .. its your concience.

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