If the check stated final payment and was cashed am I still obligated to pay?
Parties may agree to a different performance than originally agreed pursuant
to the contract This is called an accord. When the accord is performed, this
is called an accord and satisfaction. The original obligation is discharged (settled).
In order for there to be an accord and satisfaction, there must be
1. a bona fide dispute;
2. an agreement to settle the dispute; and
3. the performance of the agreement.
For a valid accord and satisfaction between two parties, a mutual assent or
agreement or a meeting of the minds is required. In other words, the thing
agreed to be given or done in satisfaction must be offered and intended by
the debtor as full satisfaction and accepted as such by the creditor.
An "accord and satisfaction" is present when a debtor tenders a check or
draft with a written notation indicating it is in full settlement of all claims, and
the claimant accepts the tender. Thus, by negotiating a check which the
debtor offers as a full payment for a disputed debt or obligation, acceptance
of the check constitutes accord and satisfaction discharging the claim. More
specifically, when a debtor tenders an amount less than the amount in
dispute upon the condition that the payment is in full satisfaction of the
claim, the creditor has but one alternative: he must accept the amount
tendered upon the terms of the condition or he must reject it entirely, or if
he has received the amount by check in a letter, he must return it. However,
in order for acceptance of a check to create an accord and satisfaction, the
notation on the check or an accompanying writing must express in plain,
definite, and certain terms that the debtor is giving such check in full
satisfaction of the debt and that acceptance thereof discharges the debt.