After waiting weeks for his final paycheck, Andreas Flaten’s former employer pays with pennies coated in oil. But after the spiteful act went viral, a Good Samaritan stepped up to make things right!
Well before receiving his final pay in pennies, Andreas Flaten had trouble with his employer. When Andreas accepted a job at an auto repair shop in Peachtree City, Georgia, he says it came with an understanding that he would leave at 5 pm each day.
This was so the dad could pick his daughter up from daycare. And the 5 pm deadline became even more important when the daycare facility began closing early during the coronavirus pandemic.
However, according to Andreas, the shop owner continuously refused to let him leave on time. That, paired with an alleged toxic environment, prompted Andreas to give his 2-week notice. But what his employer did next, no one saw coming!
Petty Employer Pays With Pennies
Andreas Flaten tried to show grace and handle the situation professionally. He submitted his resignation letter explaining his reason for leaving and gave the standard 2-week notice.
Unfortunately, he only made it one more week. Andreas says his resignation only fueled more hostility from the shop owner. So, the fed-up employee washed and returned his uniforms, along with another letter explaining why he wouldn’t be returning.
The shop owner still owed Andreas his final paycheck of $915. Before paying with pennies, he first tried withholding the funds altogether. It was only after Andreas had contacted the U.S. Department of Labor and hinted at involving a lawyer that the owner finally delivered the money that was due. But the way he did it lends a lot of credence to claims by Andreas and others of the toxic work environment inside the shop.
Months after it was due, the shop owner finally delivered the payment of $915 to Andreas Flaten’s house. Only, it wasn’t in the form of a paycheck but rather a pile of one-cent coins in the driveway!
“At first, we were super ticked because we were trying to leave the house to go get my boyfriend some medicine since he had a stomach bug all day,” explains the girlfriend of Andreas Olivia Oxley. “And we had to shovel pennies out of the driveway before we could go anywhere. However, after the first shovel full, all we could do was laugh because this poor miserable man took so much time to be vindictive and cruel. We absolutely refused to let him ruin a single moment of ours.”
WATCH: Final Paycheck Paid In Pennies Covered With Oil
By paying Andreas in pennies, his employer left him with a heap of 91,500 coins totaling about 500 pounds altogether. But that wasn’t the only problem.
"It would be one thing if it was just pennies," he said. "I wish it was just pennies."
Making matters worse, the pennies were coated in some kind of oily substance which Andreas believes is power-steering fluid. He and his girlfriend, Olivia, spent hours transferring the mountain of pennies from the middle of their driveway into a wheelbarrow. The weight of all those coins is so great, it flattened the wheels of the wheelbarrow!
By paying Andreas in pennies covered in oil, the shop owner essentially rendered the payment useless. Before they could use the money, Andreas would first have to clean all the coins. Soaking them in a mixture of Dawn dish soap, white vinegar and water wasn’t enough. Each coin would have to be wiped individually and it took Andreas two hours just to get $5 worth ready.
Strangers Step In And Help
As the story of the man who was paid in pennies went viral, it outraged folks from all over the world.
Some suggested starting a fundraiser to replace the missing wages. Others recommended getting crews of volunteers to help with the coin cleaning. But Andrea and Olivia resigned themselves to taking on the time-consuming task themselves.
Thankfully, they didn’t have to, though. News of the stunt reached the company, Coinstar. And they realized they had the means to help!
“Both the oil and the weight are going to make it very difficult for Mr. Flaten to transport these coins,” explained Jeff Lail, Coinstar VP of North American Operations.
Coinstar traveled to Georgia and picked up the heap of pennies. They will take care of cleaning, wrapping, and re-circulating the coins. And they took care of reimbursing Andreas, this time paying in $100 dollar bills instead of pennies!
“I was dreading thinking I was going to have to go through hours and hours of cleaning this, and these guys have absolutely saved me,” Andreas said.
What a relief to see something good come out of such a nasty situation.
WATCH: Coinstar Steps In To Help Man Paid In Pennies
LISTEN: Parents Of 4 Step In For Boy After Hearing His Heartbreaking Shaken Baby Syndrome Story
h/t: Tank’s Good News