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    Category: Criminal/Illegal

    Needs To Contract An Understanding In Contracts

    | CA, USA | Bosses & Owners, Criminal/Illegal

    (I recently finished an extensive project to install several computer systems for a new business. Afterwards, the owner paid me half of the agreed upon money with a check marked ‘full payment’. This is our conversation.)

    Me: *handing it back* “I think you made a mistake. This is half of what we agreed to.”

    Owner: *cheerfully* “Well, you see, the project ran over-budget, and since we were paying you so well we decided to just take the excess out of your paycheck.”

    Me: *stunned* “That’s not how this works. We signed a contract for an agreed sum and you’re trying to rip me off for half of it.”

    Owner: *laughing* “Oh, that silly thing! Yeah, I forgot to mention, my wife looked at it and said it was all wrong and that she could fix it easy.”

    (He pulls out the contract from a drawer, where I can immediately see about a dozen ‘corrections’ made in pen and pencil, cutting my pay in half as well as including a clause for unlimited on-call repair work for the next 15 years.)

    Me: “No. You owe me [total amount], which is due by the end of the week, and I clearly stated when I took this job I would only offer a two-year warranty for repairs.”

    Owner: “You can’t do that! You already signed the contract!”

    (I ended up going to small-claims court over this, where the judge openly mocked the business owner and his insistence that his ‘corrections’ to the contract were all perfectly valid and legal. The case was very quickly ruled in my favor.)

    Time To Cash Out Early

    | LA, USA | Bosses & Owners, Criminal/Illegal, Money

    (I am new to town and trying to find one or more part-time jobs, just to pay the bills while I look for something I actually want to do long-term. I call a small gift shop and ask if they’re hiring and the manager says he can interview me that afternoon. I’m hopeful that they need someone so quickly, so I go in to interview. The manager tells me he wants to hire me after hearing of my previous job experience and is willing to give me full-time hours at a great salary. Everything seems great until I start asking some more detailed questions.)

    Me: “And how often would I get paid?”

    Manager: “Every week or so.”

    Me: “Okay, and do you issue paper W-2’s at the end of the year or do I download it from the company site?”

    Manager: *gets visibly unsure* “Well… I don’t really do those.”

    Me: *shocked* “What do you mean? How do I report my income for taxes?”

    Manager: “I’m sure you could… if you wanted to. Probably look up how to report them yourself.”

    Me: “You mean you don’t report company taxes?”

    Manager: “No. I just pay everyone cash.”

    (Needless to say, I did not take that job. I didn’t report him to the IRS, but I have always wondered if I should have. He was getting away with paying no employee benefits or business taxes!)

    Cardi-gonna Get You In Trouble

    | Kent, England, UK | Bad Behavior, Criminal/Illegal, Employees

    (I’m browsing, with my mum and little sister, in a local charity shop that supports a well-known research company. It’s the height of summer, and said sister is wearing a cardigan because she is self-conscious whilst outside in public.)

    Mum: *to sister* “Hey, [Sister], there are some nice dresses over here that you might like.”

    (I’m over the other side of the shop browsing their book collection. There is currently one member of staff in the shop, manning the till, but currently doing nothing.)

    Sister: *moans* “Mum, it’s hot in here.”

    Mum: “Okay, hun. Put it in my bag for the meanwhile.”

    (Then, the middle-aged staff member appears right behind them both.)

    Employee: *narrows eyes* “Excuse me, ma’am, but we do not tolerate your kind in here.”

    Mum: *baffled* “…I’m sorry?”

    Employee: “Don’t pretend you don’t know!”

    Mum: *exasperated* “No, I don’t know! What are you talking about?!”

    (The employee looks at my sister, bends down slightly and tuts at her.)

    Employee: “It’s a shame your generation are this way.” *to herself* She should know better.”

    (By now I can see my mum is kind of losing it and my sister is tearful. I intervene.)

    Me: “Pardon me, ma’am, but don’t you think it’s unfair to make an accusation of someone without actually telling them what is it they’re being accused of?”

    Employee: *sighs dramatically* “Oh, all right then.” *points menacingly at sister* “I saw her put one of our cardigans in that bag! Stealing!”

    Mum: “That was hers! She came in wearing it!”

    Employee: *scoffs* “Yeah, pull the other one.”

    (I pull the cardigan from Mum’s bag and show the label to the rude employee.)

    Me: “Ma’am, I’ve worked in charity shops before, and they tag clothes just like any other store you’ll find. There is no tag on this cardigan!”

    Employee: “She could have taken it off!”

    Me: “But this cardigan is [well-known Brand name] and you don’t even sell that kind of label here!”

    Employee: “Hmph. Well, rest assured, I’ll be speaking to my manager about this.”

    (As we swiftly removed ourselves from the shop, the woman was wagging her finger at us from the large window display. Later, we called the manager before the employee did, and got a profuse apology. The employee was also fired for her appalling treatment of customers.)

    Disservice Dog

    | TX, USA | Bosses & Owners, Criminal/Illegal, Pets & Animals

    (I work in a shop that has a cat. This cat does not like dogs and will attack them. The boss used to allows dogs that could be carried but has recently started sporadically enforcing an unposted ‘no dogs’ rule. While I’m out of sight shelving, I hear her:)

    Boss: “I’m sorry, but you can’t bring that dog in here. We have a cat and he doesn’t like dogs. Your dog is going to have to leave.”

    (I walk out from behind the shelves and see a lady standing outside – with a dog with a very obvious service dog vest.)

    Me: “Did you just make that service dog leave?”

    Boss: “Yeah, he was upsetting [Cat].”

    Me: “You do know that’s illegal, right?”

    Boss: “No, it isn’t!”

    Me: “Uh, yeah. ADA.”

    Boss: “Well, I didn’t know that.”

    (She’s owned this business for 15 years!)

    How To Win The War Against Telemarketers, Part 7

    | Endicott, NY, USA | Criminal/Illegal, Employees, Family & Kids

    (At about six pm, the phone rings.)

    Me: “Hello.”

    Telemarketer: *speaking with a very thick, almost cliché Indian accent* “Hi! My name is Doug! I’d like to talk to you about upgrading your home security system! We have plenty of offers…”

    Me: *interrupting, but staying polite* “…Oh, thank you very much. But we don’t have a home security system and aren’t interested. You have a nice day, Doug. Take care.”

    Telemarketer: “Oh… ok. Thank you and good-bye.”

    (I hung up the phone and sit down. Five minutes later, the same number called back.)

    Me: *answering the phone* “Uh… hi.”

    Telemarketer: “Hi, my name is Doug! I’d like to talk…”

    Me: *interrupting* “Hi. You just called us. Sorry, we’re not interested. Have a nice night though.”

    Telemarketer: “Oh, sorry. I didn’t mean to call back. Thank you and good-night!”

    (Less than 10 seconds after I hung up, the phone rang again.)

    Me: “Please stop calling this number. This is the third time I said we’re not interested.”

    Telemarketer: “Hi, my name is Doug! I’d like to…”

    Me: “Okay, first of all… your name isn’t ‘Doug.’ Second. Stop calling!”

    (I hung up. This time there was a pause of five minutes before good ol’ ‘Doug’ called back.)

    Me: “Listen, ‘Doug’… Stop calling us! If this keeps up, we will contact the police and report this number for harassment.”

    Telemarketer: “Oh.”

    (I hung up and he called right back. This time I handed it off to my mother, who was furious about the fact that he had already called numerous times.)

    Mom: “Stop calling us! We don’t want what you’re offering!”

    Telemarketer: “May I speak to the man of the house?”

    Mom: “No, you may not. I own this house with my husband. He doesn’t want to talk to you, so you’re going to talk to me. And I’m telling you to stop.”

    (She hung up on him and he called back yet again a few minutes later. This time we handed the phone to my step-father.)

    Step-Father: “We’re calling the police.”

    Telemarketer: “What?”

    Step-Father: “You’ve spent the past 15 minutes harassing us over the phone. We’re calling the police.”

    (They argued back and forth for several minutes. My step-father hung up and informed us that ‘Doug’ evidently didn’t understand why we were calling the police, and in fact, seemed to barely understand who the police even were. Needless to say, he called back again. This time we let it ring through, hoping he’d leave a message and then stop calling. He didn’t leave a message. He just called right back again about four more times before we picked up the phone again. My mom answered this time.)

    Mom: “Okay, ‘Doug’… You pushed my ‘a**-hole button’ too many times.”

    (She proceeds to threaten him with the police again, before launching into a barrage of insults, evidently because he ignored the threat of police and tried to sell her a home security system again. We hung up. We tried to call the local police department about a minute later, but “Doug” interrupted us. He had just called as we picked up the phone to start dialing, he was already on the line. We just hung up and immediately called the police before he could call again.)

    Step-Father: *a few minutes later, while on phone with the police* “Oh, my god! The phone just beeped! He’s trying to call us again!”

    (An officer that was nearby showed up about five minutes later. While we were waiting for the officer, “Doug” tried to call our house again three more times. The officer took the number, and had to leave to take care of something else. “Doug” tried to call us one more time, before the calls suddenly stopped. He returned a short while later just to check in, and informed us that “Doug” was not going to be calling back. Evidently, the police had contacted the number in the meantime, and reported ‘Doug’ to a number of superiors.)

    How To Win The War Against Telemarketers, Part 6
    How To Win The War Against Telemarketers, Part 5
    How To Win The War Against Telemarketers, Part 4

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