They would have to sue you to get it back and they probably don't want to waste the time or money to do so. If they sue, try to negotiate an agreed to amount to pay back if you don't want to appear in Small Claims Court - where I assume they would file the lawsuit.
If you purchased an item in a store and the cashier gave you too much change back, would you keep it, knowing it was a mistake?
They say you get what you pay for, and this response is free, so take it for what it is worth. This is my opinion based on very limited information. My opinion should not be taken as legal advice. For true advice, we would require a confidential consultation where I would ask you questions and get your complete story. This is a public forum, so remember, nothing here is confidential. Nor am I your attorney. I do not know who you are and you have not hired me to provide any legal service. To do so would require us to meet and sign written retainer agreement. My responses are intended for general information only.
Yes. You were overpaid, right? You didn't earn the money. There's no reason in law or logic that would allow you to keep it.
Craig T. Byrnes
Disclaimer: Please be aware that I am not offering legal advice, nor forming an attorney-client relationship with you. I am not representing you, nor doing anything to protect your legal rights. If you believe that you have suffered a legal wrong, take action before any statute or limitations expires, or your right to do so may be lost forever. Good luck in your legal matter.
Yes, you are legally obligated to pay back money paid to you by mistake. Your keeping that money would be unjustly enriching you, meaning you got money you did not earn.
Call to see if you can negotiate payment terms if you have already spent the money and you cannot pay it all back at once.
Good luck to you.
This answer should not be construed to create any attorney-client relationship. Such a relationship can be formed only through the mutual execution of an attorney-client agreement. The answer given is based on the extremely limited facts provided and the proper course of action might change significantly with the introduction of other facts. All who read this answer should not rely on the answer to govern their conduct. Please seek the advice of competent counsel after disclosing all facts to that attorney. This answer is intended for California residents only. The answering party is only licensed to practice in the State of California.