A Problem Shared: The Nursery Lost My Money

A Problem Shared Childcare Money | by | 24th Jul 2018

Money in envelope for A Problem Shared article

A mother is upset and angry at her daughter’s nursery that is debating whether she’s paid her bill or not. Where does she stand on this and what can she do to solve this situation? She contacted FamilyPoint for advice.

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Dear FamilyPoint

I’m really upset and annoyed. My little girl’s nursery has lost the money I paid for this terms bill. There was an error on the paper bill so they kept it to amend, but my dad had already given me £140 in cash to pay what we thought was going to be £130ish. To make sure it didn’t get spent, I took it to nursery and said I’d pay the difference once they’d worked it out (lunch club hadn’t been included on the bill). The girl in the nursery at the time was battling with twins that were causing a ruckus so I said I’d leave it on the shelves.

They’re now basically saying that I’m lying and it wasn’t paid. No one has any recollection of any conversation and say I couldn’t have paid it, as I didn’t know how much it was. The bill was £130 before the extra lunch clubs; she gave it to me the 2nd week of June. I said the £140 my dad gave me was in an envelope so I’d make up the difference if they let me know how much it was. They now want me to pay the full bill £161. The bill includes 3 days she wasn’t even in nursery, two were teacher training days and she was having a taster at big school. What do I do?

They’ve never provided me with a receipt and are making out that because I pay in arrears not upfront it’s my fault. It’s a small village nursery. My eldest daughter went there and now my youngest so I’ve know them near enough 8 years so this really hurts.

FamilyPoint’s Advice

I’m very sorry to hear about the very difficult situation with your daughter’s nursery.  I can sense it is a very sensitive situation for you to try and resolve, especially as you say you are living in a village, this is probably a ‘close knit’ community.

The issues

It sounds like there are two main issues here. Firstly, the nursery fee that you placed in an envelope has been misplaced and there’s been a misunderstanding with the allocated days. Secondly, your concerns have not been taken seriously and the situation is currently unresolved.

Your options

It would be a good idea to try and resolve things informally to begin with. You’ve attempted to speak with the nursery worker, but this was unsuccessful. You could try speaking to the nursery manager or leader next. Write down what has happened in bullet form. Put it in date order and include details of the staff involved. You could also explain how the situation and lack of trust has made you feel.

You may have already tried the above option, or it might not work. The next step would be to make a formal complaint. This link from Which takes you through the process involved and has useful template letters and advice. Please note, this is a UK wide article and refers to Ofsted. This is the regulatory body for nurseries in England. If you want to raise a complaint or concern in Wales you need to do this via the Care Inspectorate for Wales. 

You have consumer rights as a client of the nursery. You could contact the Consumer Helpline run by the Citizens Advice Bureau on 03454 04 05 06 (Welsh speaking advisor on 03454 04 05 05). They will give you legal advice about your situation and discuss possible solutions with you.

Future advice

I’m sure you will always do this from now on, but it would be a good idea to always get proof of payment. You can request regular receipts or even use a different payment method. If you transfer the money through your bank you will always have a record of that payment.

We hope that the above options help you and that you are able to resolve this situation soon.

All the best

The FamilyPoint Team

FamilyPoint Helpline

If you would like further information on national or local support services, then you can contact us at FamilyPoint Cymru via phone 0300 222 57 57, text 07860 052 905, or IM/Chat. We are open Monday to Friday 9am-5pm.

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