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Can i pay for things with just pennies?
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Can i pay for things with just pennies?

For example if I have a check at a resturant for $50 can I elect to pay all in pennies? Can they deny them if I use them? Can they legally make ME count them?

I know its rude and all that but if more people paid for things with pennies then they would get rid of the penny.
Additional Details
Why cant the restaurant count them?


money is money so yes you can use pennies.
The wait staff and cashier are just working for a living and want to get home to their families; don't harass them with pennies. Take the pennies to the bank and get green money. Lots more pleasant for everyone and
your food will digest better if you pay with green.

Go for it. or you could already have them in rolls that way it will make it easier for you to count.

Jay V
Only 25 pennies or less is considered legal tender and as such a debt cannot or need not be settled with more than 25 pennies. Interestingly if the debt is made near the same time or at the same time as the payment of such debt then legal tender does not have to be accepted as no contract of debt was made. For this reason your local 7-11 does not have to accept a 50 or 100 dollar bill. If however you have eaten a meal at a restaurant and get the bill later then they have to accept all legal tender.

Businesses, in general, are private enterprises on private property that can refuse anything they want. They can kick you off their property, refuse you service, etc. So long as it isn't based on things such as race, etc.

That being said, if the business has no signs posted refusing pennies, and you have already consumed some of their product or used their service, they are probably going to have to take the pennies if that's all you have.

However, if you were in a retail store, trying to buy something with lots of pennies, they could refuse to accept the pennies and you would have to find another option or leave without transacting business.

of course they can make you count them, how else would you prove that there are enough.

If you want to get rid of pennies, just stop using them.
When you get them in change, just add them to the tip

I work in a restaurant and some people are like that. Let me tell you this. Don't pay in pennies if you dine there often. They will remember you and you will not receive the best treatment next time. Besides, it's ignorant. And yes, they can and should make you count it out.

They would have to count them, but they would probably suggest you pay otherwise, then you could state that will be your only means of payment, and if they decline state that you have the right to pay with legal american tender and if they will not accept it then they must not want a payment.

100 pennies is a dollar just took $370.63 of them to bank and they counted them and credited my checking account just save them in a jar and then take to bank and tell them to deposit inti your account

Yes. You can just pay for stuff with pennies. They must accept the currency.

It is a great way to go and "rebel" against a store. Buying a $20 to $30 or more purchase and paying with only non-rolled pennies.

Michelle H
You could try, but that's where the signs saying they reserve the right to deny service to anyone comes in. If they didn't know ahead of time (in the case of a restaurant where you pay after you eat) they don't have to take it, but they also wouldn't have any legal recourse to get their money since they refused to take what was offered.

Gus S
It's a good way to pay the IRS.

techinically they have to count them to make sure every single one is there. I do have to say it would be incredibly rude to do to someone though. I would put it up there with leaving a bad tip or being over fussy with your food. a waitress is NOT going to be too happy with you and you'll be known as "that guy" with all the pennies. and they can't get rid of the penny until people stop labeling things as being "$9.99" and that's not even going into the 6% tax in one state or 7% somewhere else.

stephen k
There is no law that limits how many pennies you can use to pay a bill. there is evidence that many "spite" payments have been paid in pennies and even the IRS HAS to accept payment in pennies.

Well... I worked for a large retail store as a cashier as my first job... No word of a lie: the first few weeks a couple came into my job and bought maybe about $15 worth of consumables. When they opened the bag they had thier money in ...there was a big zip-lock bag were all nickles and dimes, and a lot of pennies and yes i had to count them all... twice (she counted them, and then I did).

Some buisnesses will ask for other forms of payments... kind of like when a buisness claims they cannot except bills over $50 ie: gas stations.

But I'm sure there's some ditz out there (like me) who will be kind enough to hold up thier other customers to count your pennies!! Every penny counts right? :(

Why not? It's Legal Tender

Get penny wraps and take them to the bank - that way you can use your debit card to pay for dinner - nobody has to count them then.

I did this one time. I was late on my gas bill and they were fining me fifty dollars in late fees. I hauled fifty dollars worth of pennies to the gas company (rolled of course). I counted it out. It must have weighed nearly as much as I did. At first the woman behind the counter said she wasn't going to take it and I couldn't pay for the fine that way and I would have to take it to the bank and I told her " This is money and you have to take it " Then I asked for her manager. She balked for a minute and then after I refused to move out of the way and she threatened to call the police and I said "Sure go a head. Are they going to arrest me for trying to pay my bill?" She finally gave in and took the pennies. I enjoyed the experience immensely. It gave me a great deal of satisfaction. I doubt I would try this now a days. I couldn't carry them for one thing.

Brett N
Why would you want to carry $50 in pennies? Thats a lot of weight to struggle with and then to waste your time counting it out? I think the joke would be on you.

Contrary to popular belief, no merchant or business is required to accept pennies or even paper currency. Yes, the coins and paper currency are all legal tender for all debts public and private. It says so right on the money. The catch, however, is that not all transactions involving money qualify as a debt. A debt is a situation in which you owe money for services already rendered or goods already provided. If the other party did not specify up front the method of payment, you can hand them a sack full of pennies. They can, however, specify the method of payment in advance. I could advise you in advance of signing the contract that I only accept dead squirrels as payment. You would then be required to pay me in the agreed upon currency.
In your scenario, if you already were served your food and ate it, you would owe a debt and could pay in pennies if they did not specify in advance that you could not use pennies. On the other hand, if they have not yet handed you your food and want payment first (such as at a fast food restaurant) they could decline your offer of copper and keep their food.

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