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> So you set it to $1000. Now the parents are still late and also argue about the insane fine, so you get no money and end up staying later than you would have anyway arguing with the parents.

Except that you do ultimately get the $1000, because you have a valid contract specifying that, and the premise is that some people are willing to pay it. Which is great -- you get paid $1000/hour to stay an extra hour. Well worth it. (And if not, specify the amount that makes it worth it.)

> How about instead of a fine you give the kids to CPS. You go home on time, the late parents never come back, or if they do they're never late again, and you win.

At which point you still receive no money but have to spend time arguing with them anyway when they show up at your house with an army of lawyers (or a machete) because you left their kids with CPS. And then you lose all your business because no one will trust their kids to someone who would leave them with CPS.

> I guess the point is that monetary punishments don't seem to work when companies can consider it as 'cost of doing business.' If we start taking away the company's hypothetical metaphorical children when they're late to pick them up then they have a reason to listen.

But we don't need them to listen as long as they're paying. Just take their money. It's worth more than their compliance, by definition, because the amount is explicitly chosen that way.

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