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Old 01-22-2013, 06:03 PM
dougie_monty dougie_monty is online now
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Question for postal clerks: Postal Money Orders

At times when I did not have a checking account, I would order through the mail with a money order--always a U. S. Postal Money Order. A relative, however, claims that all I'm proving by this--whatever else happens--is that 'I have bought a money order.'
Several years ago, I paid for a video in a series I ordered from Columbia House with such a money order instead of with a check--my checks may have been running low at the time. CH claimed I had not paid them. I sent them a letter pointing out I paid with a money order; they ignored the letter, and after a while threatened to sic collection agents on me.
Finally, I asked a postal clerk to contact the Postal Inspector's office; they sent a communication to the Inspectors' Office in St. Louis, which sent me a photostat of the specific money order (for which I had kept the stub, of course); the photostat showed the same endorsement stamps on the back as I had seen on the backs of cancelled checks I had mailed in payments to CH.
I mailed the photostats to Columbia House with a letter stating that I had reported the matter to the Postal Inspectors' Office. CHG back down.
The relative, however, still insists that all I ever proved was that I had bought a money order!(As if I could steal one?) The postal clerk told me, nonetheless, that if CH resumed harassing me the USPS would support me in the matter.
Is this relative just being contrary?
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  #2  
Old 01-22-2013, 06:27 PM
Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor is online now
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Very.
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"He is an abomination of science that curdles the milk of all honest men!"~~One Dr Chouteh, possibly commenting on Bosda Di'Chi.Or not.
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Old 01-22-2013, 06:31 PM
KneadToKnow KneadToKnow is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dougie_monty View Post
the photostat showed the same endorsement stamps on the back as I had seen on the backs of cancelled checks I had mailed in payments to CH.
This is the evidence that you not only purchased a money order but delivered it to Columbia House and that they deposited it. Clearly your relative is being a ninny.
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Old 01-22-2013, 09:29 PM
Keeve Keeve is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dougie_monty View Post
The relative, however, still insists that all I ever proved was that I had bought a money order! (As if I could steal one?)
I think you're misunderstanding the relative. The relative is not saying that you can prove the money order wasn't stolen. Rather, the relative's point is, "All you can prove is that you bought a money order for that amount. But you can't prove that you actually used it to pay Columbia House."

Technically speaking, I suppose this is accurate. You can't prove that you paid Columbia House. However, when you sent a copy of the stub to the postal inspector, they were able to prove that your money order was indeed used to pay Columbia House.
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:38 AM
Alley Dweller Alley Dweller is offline
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Just FYI, you don't have to contact a Postal Inspector, just bring your money order receipt and your ID to any post office and ask the clerk for PS Form 6401, "Money Order Inquiry." If the money order has been cashed, they will send you a copy of the cashed money order, if it has not been cashed after 60 days, they will send you a new money order. There is a fee.

Last edited by Alley Dweller; 01-23-2013 at 12:39 AM..
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:20 AM
Alley Dweller Alley Dweller is offline
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Just to expand a bit on Keeve's point:
It is true that the customer receipt portion of the money order is not proof that you sent the money order to CH. It is just a carbon copy. Since you take the money order home and fill in the payee's name yourself, it is quite easy to have the carbon copy say one thing and the original say a different thing, too.

Oftentimes, you can settle a dispute just by showing the customer receipt, but if you run into an obstinate party, you can obtain a copy of the cashed money order from the Postal Service that will carry exactly the same weight as a canceled check from a bank. I suppose that CH could then make the claim that you used the money order to pay off a different debt, but they could do the same with a canceled check. In any case, it would then fall on them to prove their new claim.
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Old 01-23-2013, 02:33 AM
dougie_monty dougie_monty is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alley Dweller View Post
[...]
Oftentimes, you can settle a dispute just by showing the customer receipt, but if you run into an obstinate party, you can obtain a copy of the cashed money order from the Postal Service that will carry exactly the same weight as a canceled check from a bank. I suppose that CH could then make the claim that you used the money order to pay off a different debt, but they could do the same with a canceled check. In any case, it would then fall on them to prove their new claim.
Obviously so, since the cancelled money order now shows the same endorsement stamps as a cancelled check. CH now bears the burden of proof.
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