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Miguel Martinez was a practical man, or so he said several times, as he repeated his story to Derrick. His only flaw was failing to play by the rules.

“We value your business, Mr. Martinez,” said Derrick. But the law doesn’t give us any leeway on this. Any cash purchase over ten thousand dollars must be report to the IRS.”

Derrick was certain that Miguel had heard all of this before, but the man was pretending that the whole IRS thing was news to him. He wasn’t a very convincing actor.


“I make large cash purchases all the time,” explained Miguel. “I never have to fill out some form. It’s easy…I hand you my cash, and you place my order.”

Yeah, right!

“Look, Mr. Martinez…”

“Call me Miguel.”

“Okay, Miguel, I can’t answer for what other stores do. If they let you skip IRS Form 8300, that’s between you and them.”

The customer opened his mouth to speak, but Derrick continued. “Legally, we have no option if you decide to pay cash. We must report cash payments over ten thousand dollars to the IRS, or we risk being fined.”

“I’ve done this at your other stores,” Miguel said. “They never made me fill out that stupid form.”

“I heard you the first time,” Derrick said. “But my store follows the law. As Annabelle explained, if you pay with a money order, check, or credit card, you don’t have to complete the form. If you want to pay cash, the law requires a Form 8300.”

Miguel shifted his weight from one foot to the other. “Why do you insist on making this complicated? All I want to do is give you my money, and you persist in giving me a hard time.”

Derrick glanced over his shoulder. Annabelle, Sheila, and Allison were watching     clearly happy that he had kept his word about making himself available.

Miguel stuck his hands in his pockets. “So how are we going to do this?”

Derrick resisted the urge to raise his voice to this idiot. “You have two options,” he said. “The same two options that Annabelle has already explained to you. Fill out the form, or use a different form of payment.”

“I don’t want to fill out the form,” Miguel said.

Derrick nodded. “That’s fine. Then we will be happy to accept a charge card, cashier’s check, or money order.”

“You don’t understand,” Miguel said. “I don’t want to fill out that form.”

Derrick looked down at his feet. He was getting tired of running in circles. Besides, who the hell carries thirty thousand in cash?


During this holiday season giving books is a terrific gift for family and friends who enjoy spending leisure time reading. You can learn more how Derrick handles situations like this when you purchase your very own copy of ‘Who’s Minding the Store?’ It can be ordered through your local bookstore or on amazon.

Happy reading!



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