I recently received a bill in the mail for something I already paid. My first thought was to go to my monthly receipt envelope to find the receipt, which I did while calling up the organization to tell them I had already paid. For some strange reason I could not find the envelope of receipts for that bill but then decided to check my credit card statement online (which really should have been step one) to search for that bill.

I had done some business with that vendor in the past so I had a record of how they were classified on my credit card statement and THERE was the payment for the item in question. I decided to run a search for that amount to see if it had been reversed or something but that was the only time that amount had posted in the last three months.

I finally got a rep on the phone and told her I was looking at my credit card statement and the payment had gone through a full TWELVE days before the date on the alleged bill.

She claimed that they would only send the bill if I owed so I needed to come in to pay up.

I then told her she needed to check it again because I had already paid and was not about to be double charged for that transaction. She agreed to call the head office and ten minutes later called back to apologize. It seems that someone had put my invoice in the wrong pile on someone else’s desk and when the payment came through it did not have a matching invoice to be zeroed out in the system. So my payment sat on someone’s desk for a few days and then I got a bill sent out in the mail like everyone else who was owing.

I thanked her for finding it so quickly and accepted her apology and breathed a sigh of relief that I did not have to pay that. Now the interesting thing is that if I had paid cash I would be lost because I cannot find the envelope of receipts for last month. By using my credit card (and paying that charge off immediately!!!) I was able to have a second hand record that I paid, which I would not have been able to prove because I cannot find the receipt.

I am glad I paid with my card and have that backup method of proof…….now where is that darned envelope????