Independent Contractor used Lowes Credit card to purchase unauthorized tools and advance credit cards totaling 2,250.00

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Independent Contractor used Lowes Credit card to purchase unauthorized tools and advance credit cards totaling 2,250.00

I have proof of purchases itemized on statement from Lowes. I confronted
contractor he admitted unauthorized usage and agreed to sign a promoissory note
in exchange for working off debt. The next day contractor quit work with excuse
of can’t work without pay So I filed lawsuit for breech of contract promissory
note violation.

Am I on right track or is there more legal action I can pursue to collect or file
criminal charges ?

Please advise.

Asked on September 7, 2016 under Business Law, Mississippi


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

In terms of recovering money, you are on the right track: a lawsuit is the legal mechanism for recovering money someone owes you, including due to them making unauthorized charges. 
You could file charges against him, too: using your credit card without permission for his own benefit is theft. There is an upside and a downside to doing so, so you need to use your judgment about this person and how he will react.
Upside: it may motivate him to pay, since if he does repay you, that will often motivate the prosecutor to allow him to plead to a lesser charge or recommend a lesser punishment (and the prosecutor will likely discuss the issue of restitution with him). So the charges may exert leverage on him to repay.
Downside: if fighting the charges (e.g. getting a lawyer) takes money he would otherwise, in theory, have to pay you, or if he is jailed and therefore loses earning time, it could reduce his ability to repay.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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