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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 47354
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Last year my (ex) employer paid me a months wages after I had

Customer Question

last year my (ex) employer paid me a months wages after I had left the company. They've requested that the money is repaid. What is my position in law?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello did you know that they paid you too much at the time?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
hello, at the time no, but I realised afterwards
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
If someone has genuinely been overpaid by their employer, then that is not money to which they are legally entitled and it should be repaid. However, an employee may be able to use the legal defence of ‘estoppel’ to resist an employer's recovery of an overpayment. One of the main cases dealing with this is that of County Council of Avon v Howlett. The employee was a teacher who was paid more sick pay than he was entitled to. The teacher queried the overpayments with the employer but was assured they were correct. By the time the Council had realised their mistake, the teacher had spent most of that money. The Court of Appeal held that the defence of estoppel prevented the employer from recovering the whole sum of the overpayment. If you are not owed any more money by them, from which they can offset the overpayment, the only way for them to pursue this is to take it to court. If they do this, you could try and claim estoppel as a defence and the court will decide if it is to be accepted. This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the specific elements you must satisfy to be able to rely on estoppel, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question and if you need me to discuss the next steps in more detail In the meantime please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts from the top of the page. The question will not close and I can continue with my advice as discussed. Thank you