Money Matters

Mom came over mid-afternoon. She was very concerned that she had written a check for the mortgage on her Mainland home out of one account and found the entry for the check in the register for a different account. Soothingly, I said, “It’s not a big deal, you just have to reverse the entry out of one register and place it in the other.” She wanted to know balances at two banks as well. During this she showed me her checkbook as she didn’t know where to write the current balance and whether she should subtract what was written in the book from the current balance. 

We focused on her Mainland bank account first, where she was worried she’d erroneously placed the mortgage entry. I looked at the register. The entry was from January of last year. Eleven (11) months ago. I thought she was talking about the December mortgage payment. Telling her the entry didn’t matter and that all was well was a Very hard pill for her to swallow. Yes, she did pay the mortgage out of her mainland account last January. And it Doesn’t matter. She talked in circles about this and I gently repeated myself. “It’s OK. “This (pointing at the screen) is the balance” I said, “All these entries (pointing at the register) were written before this (pointing at the screen) balance.” Deep breath.
Then we logged onto her Island bank. I focused in on a check cashed for $2250.00. When looking at it she had a hard time remembering what it was for. The memo field was obscured by a barcode. We worked out: Repair, Including paint.” Then it clicked. She told me it was for car repair and then said it was a scam. Oh Shit. Evidently someone approached her about the condition of her car, coaxed her into writting the check, did fill work (so she says), said she’ll have to ‘wet sand’ the work and then they’ll come back and paint. 
The bank is figuring out how the check was cashed, and who allowed it to happen, at a branch on a neighboring Island, the same day mom wrote it. The sheriff has sent me a release to sign giving them access to the account (I am an owner of all of her accounts) in order to investigate, and I am making Stealth Run II to the Island tomorrow to search for anything. An invoice, receipt, statement or any clue about this person.
If it’s all upright and Kosher, this is an embarrasment I will swallow gladly. Somehow, I doubt I’ll need to.

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