Updated -- Child millionaire for a minute ... until bank puts a stop to it


Update: Results of our poll (see below) based on this post of July 2:

You answered the question What would you do if money landed in your bank account by mistake? this way-

Notify the bank- it's the right thing to do: 4,954 votes, 52.8%
Pretend its mine just for fun until they figure it out: 1,654 votes, 17.6%
Empty my account and run: 2,776 votes, 29.6%

Imagine going to an ATM to get some money, and finding out you're a millionaire. Now imagine this happening to you when you're only 16 years old. Would you start spending it? Or would common sense rule and would you check with the bank to see what's going on?

A British boy named William Bowen became a momentary recipient of £2 million and took the more risky approach. He started spending. The story begins with a trip to an ATM to withdraw £300 to do some shopping. Bowen didn't worry about his balance on that stop.

But he returned to the ATM later in the day to check his balance to see if he had any money available for more shopping. Much to his surprise, he appeared to be £2 million richer. Bowen was waiting on a payment from a government program that gives money to children who stay in school. He didn't think it would be that much, but wasn't arguing.


Originally published