Company accidentally pays an employee…
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Company accidentally pays an employee a salary 286 times more than normal: he withdraws the money and disappears

August 23, 2022 • By Mark Bennett

We all hope that, sooner or later, luck will come knocking on our door, and this is a wish shared by many. It wouldn't take much - perhaps a small lottery win or an unexpected gift - to make many people happy, but this rarely happens. So, to deal with our the daily expenses, we have to rely only on our jobs and the salaries they come with. However, if, due to an error, your employer pays you too much, how would you react?

We are not talking about bonuses: Christmas bonuses, for example are one thing, but what if you got paid a huge sum of money by accident. This happened to a Chilean employee who, by error, received a salary that was 286 times higher than his normal monthly rate. Don't believe this? Well, here is the story:

This story took place in Chile where an employee of a consortium that manages most of the country's cold meats production, received an unexpected surprise from the company. The employers, unknowingly, paid the man a monthly salary which was 286 times more than his regular monthly rate. When the accountants became aware of a huge shortfall in the company's coffers, an investigation was launched that led to the discovery of the error.

The company, instead of paying the employee about € 540 euros - roughly 500,000 Chilean pesos - "gave" the man an amount that was approximately € 170,000 euros. This would be tempting for anyone, let alone someone in the context of Chile's economic situation (where a euro goes much, much further than in Europe) - and this employee was definitely tempted by this huge windfall.

Frantically, the company contacted the employee immediately to rectify the mistake and ask him to return the money. At first, the man first said he would resolve the error through his bank - but then he disappeared. That's right. The man was unreachable for a few days, and he only showed to submit a resignation letter through his lawyer. This action was very upsetting for the company and led top management to sue their ex-employee for taking money that was not his. But to date, nobody knows where this overpaid, ex-employee is hiding.

How would you have behaved in this man's shoes? Would you have acted like him or would you have returned the money?


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