suing a friend for money owed

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#1 Posted by kato_ (1423 posts) -

So i lent my friend some money without any written agreement (stupid of me) and its been almost a year and i haven't recieved any money from him.

It all started by me lending him my Credit Card to use to pay for something online. So i agreed because before i gave him the Credit Card i told him that he'd give me the CASH first and so he did. So all is well and then next month later i go check on my Credit Card Statement and my Credit Card is maxed out.

Now i've been trying to getting him to pay off the Credit Card because he maxed it out but so far i haven't gotten anything from him.

Now if i take this to court what are my chances of winning even without Written Agreement?

I have Witnesses
I also have phone messages of him agreeing that he owes me money
On my credit card statement you can see that my card was perfectly fine up until my friend used it and i haven't used it since for evidence reasons.

What do you guys think?

#2 Posted by thattotally (3842 posts) -

That's unfortunate. Always be careful with your money.

#3 Posted by max-Emadness (1781 posts) -

without a written agreement it may be hard and u really dont have any evidence sayin tat he maced out ur card.U said he payed u the cashthe first time and then when u went to check ur card it was maxed out. u need evidence stating that he maxed out ur card and is not payin u back

#4 Posted by Darthkaiser (12447 posts) -
You can always call the credit card company to see on what he maxed out the bill but it also depends on how much money we are untalking about if a few hundreds I think it would be best to let things go, if some thousands then you have a chance
#5 Posted by Mikey132 (5114 posts) -

That sucks. Same kinda thing happened to my best friend. He lent a old good friend of ours $2000 for a lawyer. My best friends mother in law gave mt best friend and his wife $2000 and said now your friend owes me. Never heard from him again until about 9 months later when my best friends wife and mom hunted him down and got him to put it in writting.

If it's only a small amount you might spend way more in court. But if it's a lot it might be worth it. But my guess is your limit isn't $10,000

#6 Posted by Vinegar_Strokes (3401 posts) -

i think the only person who could resolve this would be judge judy

#7 Posted by rawsavon (40002 posts) -
How much money are we talking here? ...people always say 'it's the principle of it all' with stuff, but I say 'f*** that'. It comes down to a cost analysis. Is it worth your time (your time is valuable), losing a friend (though he sounds like a real piece of crap anyways), etc
#8 Posted by kato_ (1423 posts) -

How much money are we talking here? ...people always say 'it's the principle of it all' with stuff, but I say 'f*** that'. It comes down to a cost analysis. Is it worth your time (your time is valuable), losing a friend (though he sounds like a real piece of crap anyways), etcrawsavon

sorry guys forgot to say but its about $9000 plus interest counting every second.

#9 Posted by justletmesignup (161 posts) -

pretty sure a verbal contract is viable in court - problem is proving it was said. he could just say "no, i never said i would pay you back". also, the fact that you thought he was trustworthy from prior experience should actually add weight to your argument.

#10 Posted by MiloZEgamer34 (589 posts) -

geez ya be careful with your money :shock:

#11 Posted by YellowOneKinobi (4128 posts) -

I think that your best shot would be taking your friend to Small Claims Court, as the burden of proof there is a lot less than any kind of conventional trial. Also, if your friend doesn't show up, in all likelihood you'll win via default verdict. Of course, it's not like your friend will pay you back any quicker, but at least (if he's working) you can eventually have his salary garnished by a marshall.

Although he's being a prick about this, just make sure you no longer want this person a friend.

Also, if I can give some unsolicited advice, never LEND money to a friend. If they ask and you feel like it, GIVE them whatever you can, but never expect it back and you'll avoid so many problems in life.

#12 Posted by rawsavon (40002 posts) -

[QUOTE="rawsavon"]How much money are we talking here? ...people always say 'it's the principle of it all' with stuff, but I say 'f*** that'. It comes down to a cost analysis. Is it worth your time (your time is valuable), losing a friend (though he sounds like a real piece of crap anyways), etckato_

sorry guys forgot to say but its about $9000 plus interest counting every second.

Take him to court...now If you had said something like a couple grand or less, that would be different. If it were me (in that case), I would just kick his ass and be done with him. But 10 grand is different. Just gather all the evidence you have and go to court
#13 Posted by Darthkaiser (12447 posts) -

[QUOTE="rawsavon"]How much money are we talking here? ...people always say 'it's the principle of it all' with stuff, but I say 'f*** that'. It comes down to a cost analysis. Is it worth your time (your time is valuable), losing a friend (though he sounds like a real piece of crap anyways), etckato_

sorry guys forgot to say but its about $9000 plus interest counting every second.

WTF??? What are you doing posting on OT go to court NAO! If it were me I think I would be the one being sued but for assault or attempt of murder Seriously a real friend woulnd't abuse you in that way he sounds like a crappy person to know. Gather the evidence prepare your case and get a good lawyer and best of luck TC
#14 Posted by Horgen (110151 posts) -
You don't have much chance of winning I think. You let him have your credit card, he probably copied what he needed to make use of it online without having the actual card.
#15 Posted by brendanhunt1 (2333 posts) -

[QUOTE="rawsavon"]How much money are we talking here? ...people always say 'it's the principle of it all' with stuff, but I say 'f*** that'. It comes down to a cost analysis. Is it worth your time (your time is valuable), losing a friend (though he sounds like a real piece of crap anyways), etckato_

sorry guys forgot to say but its about $9000 plus interest counting every second.

The court basically just has to decide whether the money was a gift or a loan. $9000 is unlikely to be a gift.

#16 Posted by gamergotgame90 (100 posts) -
I would definitely persue taking this to small claims court although this is no small chunk of change. Verbal agreements can sometimes be as strong as written. Also did he do all of this on line (charges) or did your "friend" do any in store purchases. If he did an in store purchase and signed your name that would be fraud. Was anyone present besides the two of you when you lent him the cc or money. Witness would be helpful on a verbal. Best of luck.
#17 Posted by lasseeb (1186 posts) -

9000$ is a LOT! You should sue that piece of crap. With a text message and the credit card bill, you can problably win.

#19 Posted by lamprey263 (24128 posts) -
I hope you have a really low limit.
#20 Posted by hockey73 (8200 posts) -
Why would you let him borrow that much? Honestly I don't even feel bad, you should have let him pull out a loan, it's one thing if it's like 20 bucks but 9000?! Although I'm not one to loan out money to friends, it tends to always get messy.
#21 Posted by thegerg (15415 posts) -
You don't have much chance of winning I think. You let him have your credit card, he probably copied what he needed to make use of it online without having the actual card. horgen123
Haha. Why don't you think he has a chance of winning?
#22 Posted by YellowOneKinobi (4128 posts) -

[QUOTE="kato_"]

[QUOTE="rawsavon"]How much money are we talking here? ...people always say 'it's the principle of it all' with stuff, but I say 'f*** that'. It comes down to a cost analysis. Is it worth your time (your time is valuable), losing a friend (though he sounds like a real piece of crap anyways), etcbrendanhunt1

sorry guys forgot to say but its about $9000 plus interest counting every second.

The court basically just has to decide whether the money was a gift or a loan. $9000 is unlikely to be a gift.

Were you guys a couple at the time? I've seen things go one way or another in the gift vs. loan thing when it involves a couple that is dating.

#23 Posted by rawsavon (40002 posts) -
Why would you let him borrow that much? Honestly I don't even feel bad, you should have let him pull out a loan, it's one thing if it's like 20 bucks but 9000?! Although I'm not one to loan out money to friends, it tends to always get messy. hockey73
He did not let him borrow that much (go back and read the OP). The guy ran up his credit card bill after he let him use it for 1 item...an item that was paid for in advance with cash -so he only let him borrow the card to order something (did not lend money) -the 'friend' just f***ed him over
#24 Posted by EmpCom (3451 posts) -
Do you ever read your cards terms and conditions of use , because you are not allowed to let anyone else use your card and since you did guess what its you that are liable
#25 Posted by Ninja-Hippo (23433 posts) -

All you need to establish in court is that on the balance of probabilities it was a loan rather than a gift. So if you can argue your case that it was a loan better than he can argue the case that it was a gift you'll get your money back. You're in a very good position because he gave you cash, which you asked for, which indicates re-payment. If it were a gift there'd be no repayment.

On the other hand, the story you gave is a little confusing. Did you just give him the card for ONE purchase, for which he gave you the cash? And then he took off with your credit card and ran up a massive bill? Because if so that's a criminal case of theft and fraud, for which you need to contact the police.

Either way you should seek the advice of a proper professional in your jurisdiction. A lot of the comments in this thread are way off the mark but present themselves as legal facts.

#26 Posted by Ninja-Hippo (23433 posts) -
Do you ever read your cards terms and conditions of use , because you are not allowed to let anyone else use your card and since you did guess what its you that are liableEmpCom
This is not true at all.
#27 Posted by YellowOneKinobi (4128 posts) -

All you need to establish in court is that on the balance of probabilities it was a loan rather than a gift. So if you can argue your case that it was a loan better than he can argue the case that it was a gift you'll get your money back. You're in a very good position because he gave you cash, which you asked for, which indicates re-payment. If it were a gift there'd be no repayment.

EDIT: just so you know, do not take or decide not to take legal action based on anything you read on the internet. Always take proper legal advice from a professional in your own jurisdiction. There are lots of comments in this thread which are way off base, and i assume they're being made by people who have no idea what they're talking about. Some along the lines of 'you cant win because you dont have any written document' and similar comments aren't good guidance at all.

Don't consider anything you read here decent legal advice, just guidance on whether it would be worth pursuing proper legal advice from a professional in your own jurisdiction. My personal opinion on the matter is that, based on what you've presented, it would definitely be worth seeking legal council on the matter and taking it from there.

Ninja-Hippo

I am pleasantly surprised to FINALLY find something written by NinjaHippo that I agree with 100%. :)

#28 Posted by foxhound_fox (88650 posts) -

Not having a written agreement really hurts your case. I can't count how many times I've seen people lose their cases on Judge Judy/People's Court/Pirro because they lent money to other people without either a written agreement or receipts. You are probably going to be SOL. Which will be a lesson for next time.

What is the worst though, this will probably ruin the friendship.

#29 Posted by hockey73 (8200 posts) -
[QUOTE="hockey73"]Why would you let him borrow that much? Honestly I don't even feel bad, you should have let him pull out a loan, it's one thing if it's like 20 bucks but 9000?! Although I'm not one to loan out money to friends, it tends to always get messy. rawsavon
He did not let him borrow that much (go back and read the OP). The guy ran up his credit card bill after he let him use it for 1 item...an item that was paid for in advance with cash -so he only let him borrow the card to order something (did not lend money) -the 'friend' just f***ed him over

Well after re-reading it, I really don't feel bad. He gave him his credit card, even if it was agreed on for one item and even though he paid him in advance with cash, still should just give someone your credit card. At the very least, he should have been there typing in his own information (cc #, etc).
#30 Posted by Wasdie (49995 posts) -

Without that written agreement, you have no real grounds to make a case on.

#31 Posted by rawsavon (40002 posts) -
[QUOTE="rawsavon"][QUOTE="hockey73"]Why would you let him borrow that much? Honestly I don't even feel bad, you should have let him pull out a loan, it's one thing if it's like 20 bucks but 9000?! Although I'm not one to loan out money to friends, it tends to always get messy. hockey73
He did not let him borrow that much (go back and read the OP). The guy ran up his credit card bill after he let him use it for 1 item...an item that was paid for in advance with cash -so he only let him borrow the card to order something (did not lend money) -the 'friend' just f***ed him over

Well after re-reading it, I really don't feel bad. He gave him his credit card, even if it was agreed on for one item and even though he paid him in advance with cash, still should just give someone your credit card. At the very least, he should have been there typing in his own information (cc #, etc).

It was a dumb move (no doubt). He should have taken the cash and ordered the item himself with his own card. Me thinks TC learned a difficult life lesson about people and money I just hope it does not cost him 10 grand+
#32 Posted by YellowOneKinobi (4128 posts) -

Without that written agreement, you have no real grounds to make a case on.

Wasdie

I'm no lawyer, but there is something called a "verbal contract."

There is also I'm guessing (GUESSING) some pretty good circumstantial evidence. If the card was used to make purchases on-line, where were they shipped to? If the card was used in a store, is there anything on the security cameras?

I think (knowing as little as I do), a big part of this will be to prove that the card was given to his friend for a one-time-only use. OR, was it given to him in the context of, "Ok, you're having a rough time, use this card in an emergency."

#33 Posted by Ninja-Hippo (23433 posts) -

Without that written agreement, you have no real grounds to make a case on.

Wasdie
This just isn't true at all. Thousands of cases get heard every single day without written agreements. Very, very few people have the foresight to get a written agreement when lending money to friends, because we're social creatures and generally lack the common sense to not trust our own friends when we're doing a good thing for them. Written agreements are what wins your case for you easily, but the lack of a written agreement doesn't lose it. He has plenty of options; witnesses, the fact that money was re-paid to him (which indicates that it was not a gift but intended to be re-paid). Then of course his friend has the very difficult task of convincing a judge that all this money was gifted to him for nothing with no intentions from either party that he should ever pay it back.
#34 Posted by rawsavon (40002 posts) -

Without that written agreement, you have no real grounds to make a case on.

Wasdie

That is not true...at all.
Both verbal and implied contracts ARE legally binding...just as much as a writte one.
Proving them is more difficult, but that does not mean that he has "no real grounds to make a case on" as you put it.

#35 Posted by surrealnumber5 (23044 posts) -
if you did not give him carte blanche to use your card, call the police and have his ass sent to jail for theft and id fraud. this will also help with your civil suit, also i would stop calling him friend buddie.
#36 Posted by foxhound_fox (88650 posts) -

I'm no lawyer, but there is something called a "verbal contract."

There is also I'm guessing (GUESSING) some pretty good circumstantial evidence. If the card was used to make purchases on-line, where were they shipped to? If the card was used in a store, is there anything on the security cameras?

I think (knowing as little as I do), a big part of this will be to prove that the card was given to his friend for a one-time-only use. OR, was it given to him in the context of, "Ok, you're having a rough time, use this card in an emergency."

YellowOneKinobi


I can't remember what Milian calls it, but there is a level of reasonable doubt that has to be exceeeded when arguing a verbal agreement, and the judge has to decide whether or not that agreement was violated based on their testimony, which of course they both could lie about. So it is harder to judge than a written agreement.

#37 Posted by PS2_ROCKS (4679 posts) -
What a jerk of a friend. I'd probably have to get violent if that was my money. Just curious, what did he spend it on?
#38 Posted by Ninja-Hippo (23433 posts) -
You also need to establish - and very clearly - whether this is a case of you lending someone your credit card and them not paying you back for their purchases or somebody STEALING your credit card and using it beyond the scope of what you agreed. If you're remotely ambiguous your whole claim falls apart. You need to know exactly what you agreed and exactly how that agreement was violated.
#39 Posted by EmpCom (3451 posts) -
[QUOTE="EmpCom"]Do you ever read your cards terms and conditions of use , because you are not allowed to let anyone else use your card and since you did guess what its you that are liableNinja-Hippo
This is not true at all.

Sorry bjut i use to work for a bank and letting other people to use your credit card breaks the terms and conditions
#40 Posted by zmbi_gmr (3573 posts) -

All I can say is that was quite foolish on your part.

#41 Posted by Ring_of_fire (15660 posts) -
I say you would have a decent shot at winning the case, as long as your witnesses saw the verbal agreement that can corroborate your claim, you keep the texts that states he owes you the money, and the evidence of what you're owed. But, in all honesty, you should never give your credit card to anyone for a long period of time, if at all. You should have either: (a) went with your friend to buy what he wants, or (b) Get the card back right after your friend buys it.
#43 Posted by surrealnumber5 (23044 posts) -
I say you would have a decent shot at winning the case, as long as your witnesses saw the verbal agreement that can corroborate your claim, you keep the texts that states he owes you the money, and the evidence of what you're owed. But, in all honesty, you should never give your credit card to anyone for a long period of time, if at all. You should have either: (a) went with your friend to buy what he wants, or (b) Get the card back right after your friend buys it. Ring_of_fire
he does not need witnesses when he has a fact pattern
#44 Posted by thegerg (15415 posts) -
[QUOTE="Ninja-Hippo"][QUOTE="EmpCom"]Do you ever read your cards terms and conditions of use , because you are not allowed to let anyone else use your card and since you did guess what its you that are liableEmpCom
This is not true at all.

Sorry bjut i use to work for a bank and letting other people to use your credit card breaks the terms and conditions

Used You used to work for a bank. Anyway, that TOU with the bank is in place simply so one can't claim that they don't owe the bank money for charges on their card, it doesn't mean that OP's "friend" isn't liable for damages caused to OP.
#45 Posted by EmpCom (3451 posts) -
[QUOTE="EmpCom"][QUOTE="Ninja-Hippo"] This is not true at all. thegerg
Sorry bjut i use to work for a bank and letting other people to use your credit card breaks the terms and conditions

Used You used to work for a bank. Anyway, that TOU with the bank is in place simply so one can't claim that they don't owe the bank money for charges on their card, it doesn't mean that OP's "friend" isn't liable for damages caused to OP.

Give it a go tc and let us know if you are successful or not. Just remember once your bankfinds out you let someone else use the card they will probably ask for it b ack
#46 Posted by psychobrew (8884 posts) -

He is not your friend. You should sue him. Even if you don't have a written agreement, you only gave him permision to buy one item with it and any judge will see he went way beyond what was offered (and probably won't think that one item was meant to be a gift either). You should also look in to criminal charges if he charged other things you did not give him permision for. Criminal charges will also protect you in case he files for bankruptcy. Talk to your credit card company and talk to the police about possible action.

The bankfor thecredit card company and the places he purchased the items fromare responsible for ensuring the chargesare valid (most were not) so you should dispute the charges with the bank that issued your credit card. There's a good chance the charges will be reversed (I think by law you can only be held responsible for $50 in cases of fraud).

#47 Posted by Meinhard1 (6775 posts) -
Nine thousand dollars?! God... Your friend must be a psycho, take legal action immediately.
#48 Posted by Ring_of_fire (15660 posts) -
[QUOTE="Ring_of_fire"]I say you would have a decent shot at winning the case, as long as your witnesses saw the verbal agreement that can corroborate your claim, you keep the texts that states he owes you the money, and the evidence of what you're owed. But, in all honesty, you should never give your credit card to anyone for a long period of time, if at all. You should have either: (a) went with your friend to buy what he wants, or (b) Get the card back right after your friend buys it. surrealnumber5
he does not need witnesses when he has a fact pattern

But if he has them, and it corroborates his story, it doesn't hurt to have them.
#49 Posted by worlock77 (22547 posts) -

You should have reported unauthorized use of your card back when this all started. You might be f***ed, but a lawyer would be better for legal advice than Gamespot.

#50 Posted by Serraph105 (28143 posts) -

[QUOTE="rawsavon"]How much money are we talking here? ...people always say 'it's the principle of it all' with stuff, but I say 'f*** that'. It comes down to a cost analysis. Is it worth your time (your time is valuable), losing a friend (though he sounds like a real piece of crap anyways), etckato_

sorry guys forgot to say but its about $9000 plus interest counting every second.

oh yeah take his a** to court if you find out it's at all possible to win.