I was employed with a company, as Manager Operations. After 3 months of service I was given the responsibility for IT purchase as well. I had intimated my manager that I didn't want to but was forcefully given it. Though this is not written, nor the additional responsibly has been given to me in written.
Now 4 months before I left I got a new vendor for supply of 2 orders. The orders were A – 22 Lakhs & B - 15 Lakhs. POs were signed by my Director as an authority, with my counter initials. We made the payments as for
A: 1 Lakh advance & rest PDC
B: full payment
Now the payments took almost 2 months, so the vendor asked for demurrage charges as 2.5 Lakhs on project A.
By the time I could stop the payment the payment for Project B was released in full. And the PDC for A bounced due to signature mismatch. On getting the PDC back, the management though that pricing was too high, and ordered to cancel the payment.
In the mean while I got to know that project B was available with a local vendor for 9 Lakhs.
What I decided was, now that PO was raised, and the check had bounced, my company might get into trouble. So, it’s better to get the order B executed from the local vendor with the refund amount from the first vendor. Cancellation was 3 Lakhs for Project A & 4 Lakh for Project B, a total of 7 Lakhs. Refund was going to be 8 Lakhs. I also decided to pay the balance 1 Lakh from my pocket.
In the meanwhile I got a new job & had to move out. Company accepted my resignation. I paid for my notice period, and got an exit in 1 week.
However things didn’t work out & my company came to know about the problem. It now thinks that I did a fraud, and wants to recover the cancellation amount from me.
Please suggest, because even I savings sum up to only 4 Lakhs.
Asked 2 years ago in Labour from New Delhi, Delhi
The fact is even if you were not appointed with official communication in writing you will be liable for transaction that you approved of as it can be easily proved that you approved of the transaction.
If there has been inordinate delay in payment getting processed the vendor is rightful in demanding demurrage charges
Did you procure the goods from the local vendor after cancellation of the earlier one?Was the transaction completed before you resigned?These are important questions?
I am sure that you would certainly have a lot of email communications and other written communications in as far as the whole transaction was concerned.
You need to co operate with the investigation and get a lawyer appointed to represent wherever required.
OK. the email system does not work in our organisation. Documents that we have are:
1. Approval from the Chairman with his signature for the pricing given by the first vendor.
2. PO signed by Director as authority & me as verifier
3. Cancellation intimation has not been received till now from the management.
4. Vendors mail detailing the breakup of the penalties.
PO was raised, and payments (as described) processed before even my offer letter.
Goods are now procured & partially delivered from the local vendor, however payment is still pending both from first vendor & to the second local vendor. I'll anyway be bearing the difference of 1 lakh myself proactively.
now the question is that if the transaction is completed successfully, am i liable to pay for the penalties imposed by the first vendor.
Asked 2 years ago
1. Is there any procurement policy in you earlier Company? Was that policy followed by you while tendering and placing the P.O.?
2. Did you ask for quatations from different vendors through News Paper ads for such high value purchases?
3. Have you taken written consent from your superior officers while deciding about the matters like selecting the vendors and prices, payment of cancellation amount etc.?
4. You stated that "However things didn’t work out & my company came to know about the problem. It now thinks that I did a fraud, and wants to recover the cancellation amount from me". Is it that you had kept the Company in dark about the matter?
5. Why did you pay from your personal pocket which your company was supposed to pay? This is very unusual and goes against you,
6. Reply to the above queries are required to advise properly.
Before one can answer the question whether you would be liable to pay for the penalties imposed by the first vendor, the fixing of liability depends on a number of factors.
If my surmise is correct the decision to confirm the first procurement contract and the subsequent cancellation with the first vendor and the contract with the local vendor you would have gone through negotiations and deliberations within your organisation and before the PO was raised.In other words can we take for granted that the whole decision making process was not unilateral.If this is the case then all that were part of the whole process of thew decisions would be held equally liable.
Do not limit the liability to monetarily compensating or contributing to make up by burning your pocket.
However good your intentions are this ca only help cast aspersions on what you are doing.
As I said earlier own responsibility,say you are ready to face the investigation by an independent agency as you have not done anything for your personal gain.If they allege fraud the onus is on them to prove it.If you receive a notice or a police complaint is lodged ensure you engage a lawyer locally asap to help you.