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is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: space-time
Date: October 26, 2008 09:34PM
some smaller places have signs that they cannot accept bills larger that $20. I wonder if this is legal or not.
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: TheTominator
Date: October 26, 2008 09:38PM
IANAL, but I think that it isn't illegal if they are doing it because the consumer buys a product of a low price they don't want to make change for the bigger bills.

I think it is illegal to refuse to accept a $50 if you buy a product over $50 in price and use a $50 bill to pay for part of it. That's what is meant by "legal tender for all debts public and private". But by that same logic, it would be illegal to refuse to accept $50 in pennies. Hmmm. Maybe I need to go to lawyer school.
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: onthedownlow
Date: October 26, 2008 09:39PM
I believe it is legal if they announce it upfront before purchase like that.

Also, below is a response from another forum after seeking the similar answer-to-the-questions from a "high paid attorney who was very, very high up in the coin and currency collecting community."

"I called to ask about the legality of a business refusing to accept specific denominations like Two Dollar Bills and One Dollar Coins while accepting smaller coins and larger bills. He explained the standard "debt" issues: If you are ordering at a fast food counter and you pay before you get your food, you have NOT incurred "debt" and they can refuse to accept certain denominations BUT they should have that policy posted. Ever see those "We canot accept bills larger than $20" signs? That is because they do not keep enough change in the register to make change for larger bills, so they warn you in advance. Not accepting smaller bills or dollar coins is not technically legal - even if posted - because there is no legitimate reason for this policy. Now, if you go to a restaurant and eat first and then get the bill and go to pay, they MUST legally accept your payment in current US Legal Tender. Twos and dollar coins should not be refused in this instance because you have "debt" and legal tender. Now, even if they have a sign about not accepting bills larger than $20, you could still pay with a $100, but they can legally tell you that they have a sign posted and do not have change. You can give them the $100 and they can keep the change above $20 or you can talk to them about coming back at another time to get your change or wait for other customers to pay with cash to get the change."



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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: RAMd®d
Date: October 26, 2008 09:39PM
I'm sure it is.

There was a lengthy thread talking about this or something similar, and it was covered in one of the many tangents.

Just as a business can choose to accept cash only, or checks, or no checks, etc, I'll bet most states allow businesses to set certain reasonable practices regarding payment methodology.

This might be a job for Google.



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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: mattkime
Date: October 26, 2008 09:50PM
its legal. annoying but legal.





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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: MacArtist
Date: October 26, 2008 10:00PM
A lot of times, a business will state that if they don't want to keep a large amount of money in their till and they have a timed drop safe. For instance good ol' 7Eleven used to have this type of set up and you had to wait 2 minutes between drops. You could get a $10 bill, 2-$5 Bills, etc. No $20 bills were kept in the register after dark (except on a Lottery night when it was very busy and a lot of change to be made until 10pm).

I don't know what kind of business you are talking about but this was an example of why certain businesses don't want to break $50 or $100 bills.



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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: RAMd®d
Date: October 26, 2008 11:07PM
I called to ask about the legality of a business refusing to accept specific denominations like Two Dollar Bills and One Dollar Coins ...."

I doubt little of that post is correct or based on fact. It sounds nothing like what one would expect from somebody who is supposed to *know* the law. Especially that bit about whether or not or when a "debt" is incurred.

The previous discussion might have links to statute or case law.

Another *big* reason that small businesses don't except large bills is do to counterfeiting. Small businesses traditionally have been the target of using a more likely denomination of counterfeit bills ($50 or $100) for a small purchase.



[Weak HTML-Fu]



You and I have memories longer than the road that stretches out ahead.

We don’t do focus groups. They just ensure that you don’t offend anyone, and produce bland inoffensive products. —Sir Jonathan Ive

-An armed society is a polite society.
And hope is a lousy defense.

There is no safety for honest men
except by believing all possible evil
of evil men.

Pixels were born to be punished. -Frederick Van Johnson

Mister, that's a ten-gallon hat on a twenty-gallon head.

I *love* Sigs. It's Glocks I hate.




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/26/2008 11:10PM by RAMd®d.
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: tronnei
Date: October 26, 2008 11:08PM
An acquaintance of mine told me he was in a restaurant in Richmond, Virginia, where payment of his tab with a $50 dollar bill was refused solely because of the man whose portrait is on the note.
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Yes.
Posted by: RAMd®d
Date: October 26, 2008 11:21PM
"This statute [Coinage Act of 1965, specifically Section 31 U.S.C. 5103] means that all United States money as identified above are a valid and legal offer of payment for debts when tendered to a creditor. There is, however, no Federal statute mandating that a private business, a person or an organization must accept currency or coins as for payment for goods and/or services. Private businesses are free to develop their own policies on whether or not to accept cash unless there is a State law which says otherwise. For example, a bus line may prohibit payment of fares in pennies or dollar bills. In addition, movie theaters, convenience stores and gas stations may refuse to accept large denomination currency (usually notes above $20) as a matter of policy. [www.treas.gov]

Note the exception referencing local state laws. Again, I think this was all referenced in the previous thread.



You and I have memories longer than the road that stretches out ahead.

We don’t do focus groups. They just ensure that you don’t offend anyone, and produce bland inoffensive products. —Sir Jonathan Ive

-An armed society is a polite society.
And hope is a lousy defense.

There is no safety for honest men
except by believing all possible evil
of evil men.

Pixels were born to be punished. -Frederick Van Johnson

Mister, that's a ten-gallon hat on a twenty-gallon head.

I *love* Sigs. It's Glocks I hate.
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: Black Landlord
Date: October 27, 2008 12:28AM
What gets me is that cashiers and businesses still freak out at $50 bills-- a 50 today is about what a 20 was 10 years ago . . .



[www.papanicholas.com] coffee smiley
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: M>B>
Date: October 27, 2008 01:11AM
BL,

That was yesterday, today...

a 100 today is about what a 20 was 10 years ago . . .

If it were not for the drug business we would have 500 & 1G Bills!

[data.bls.gov]
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: Racer X
Date: October 27, 2008 01:45AM
bottom line, even if it is against the law, would you actually call the police and expect them to show up? Well, maybe to haul you off for a prank call......
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: Black Landlord
Date: October 27, 2008 06:50AM
Quote
M>B>
BL,

That was yesterday, today...

a 100 today is about what a 20 was 10 years ago . . .

If it were not for the drug business we would have 500 & 1G Bills!

[data.bls.gov]

That's a neat little resource, but I don't see how it could possibly be accurate.



[www.papanicholas.com] coffee smiley
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: billb
Date: October 27, 2008 06:59AM
Does Paypal take large bills ?
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: Mac-A-Matic
Date: October 27, 2008 07:25AM
PayPal just takes...
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: freeradical
Date: October 27, 2008 10:12AM
When I was in Korea, the black market money changers loved $100 bills. If the "official" exchange rate was 800 Won to the dollar, you'd get 820-830 to the dollar with $20 bills, and well north of 850 if you had $100 bills.
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: BigGuynRusty
Date: October 27, 2008 10:31AM
Quote
M>B>
BL,

That was yesterday, today...

a 100 today is about what a 20 was 10 years ago . . .

If it were not for the drug business we would have 500 & 1G Bills!

[data.bls.gov]
HUH?!?!
You sure you posted the correct link?
What did inflation have to do with the drug business??

BGnR



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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: davester
Date: October 27, 2008 11:18AM
I'd take your $50 bill, just don't expect any change back.




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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: Lee3
Date: October 27, 2008 12:40PM
Yeah this happened to me at Burger King at lunch time. I had a $50. Paid with the change in my ash tray. I was a bit ticked off so I never went there again.
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Re: is it legal for a business not to take $50 and $100 bills?
Posted by: ADent
Date: October 27, 2008 01:55PM
Some places don't take cash at all.

FedEx was one of the first no cash policies.
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