Money Woes

Money Woes

There is a saying, “Money makes the world go around” ~ and it does in the sense that it is the currency that our world operates by. Money is part of our day-to-day lives. It changes hands daily for goods and services. We buy items at stores … we buy food at restaurants … we buy gasoline for our cars … we pay our bills. Like numerous other businesses, Tracy Helps You provides a service to our clients, and we get paid for those services. For payment, we accept checks or cash.

Earlier this week, I got a crash course on being on the receiving end of several counterfeit twenty dollar bills. Like many people, I pay most of my household bills online. It’s simple and convenient – schedule the amount and the date, click OK, and you are done. Except, that I forgot about an annual insurance payment that is taken directly from my account each year. Not a big deal … I just had to deposit more money into the account before the bill payments cleared. I also forgot that the banks aren’t open on Labor Day, so I did the next best thing. I counted out $300 in twenty dollar bills (counted out 15 bills, checked 3 times), put them with the deposit slip into a sealed envelope and put them in my banks “night deposit” vault.

Tuesday afternoon, I signed into my online banking to just make sure that all the payments and the deposit went smoothly. I’m glad I did, because instead of a $300 deposit pending, there was a $240 deposit pending. I made a trip to our local bank branch and was informed that 3 of the $20 that were in my envelope were counterfeit bills and were being sent to the Secret Service. To say that I was shocked would be huge understatement.

They explained that they confiscate the bad bills and sent them off to the Secret Service for verification, and that I basically just lost $60. She advised me to check out their website to learn more about how to spot a counterfeit bill and what to do if you find one.

So, I went home and spent a couple of hours learning about counterfeit money. I encourage you to please take some time and learn for yourself … here is the website www.secretservice.gov. Just click the Investigation drop-down menu toward the top of the page and then click on “Know Your Money”. It takes you to a PDF file showing all the safety features that are incorporated into each denomination of US currency.

The reason for me telling you all of this is to share my unfortunate experience and to pass along some knowledge to hopefully prevent you from having a similar experience.

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