Can a teacher legally keep money that I paid for a schooltrip, if my daughter has withdrawn from the class?

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Can a teacher legally keep money that I paid for a schooltrip, if my daughter has withdrawn from the class?

I paid for this trip at beginning of school year and after 1st semester withdrew my child from this class because she was missing too many other classes for this class (going off campus during 4th period). I asked for my money to be returned and was told no.

Asked on March 1, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, North Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

It depends on the circumstances:

1) If the terms of the course generally of this trip specifically were that payments were nonrefundable, then the teacher or school does not need to repay it. (Or the school's rule generally for all trips, in all classes, is that payments are not refundable, that is enforceable.)

2) Even if it was not expressly stated that the payment would be nonrefundable, if the money was already committed (e.g. committments made for a number of bus seats, event tickets, etc.), then it would not need to be refunded.

However, otherwise, if the payment was not stated to be nonrefundable and if you've pulled out early enough that no costs were committed to in part based on your child's attendence, then you probably should get the money back--though if the school or teacher will not pay it, it is difficult to imagine that a lawsuit would be worthwhile to seek its repayment.


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