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Small claims court

(2 Posts)
KazzaRazza Tue 27-Aug-13 18:12:18

Just need some advice on behalf of a friend.

She was in a 3 month relationship with a guy who has turned out to be a bit of a fruitloop (whole different thread would be needed!!).

They talked about going on holiday and he said he would love to take her to Italy. She said she couldn't afford it but he said that wouldn't matter. She let him know the dates she could go (would have been dating for about 7/8 months by the time they went away).

She decided to call it a day on their relationship and he is now threatening to take her to the small claims court for half the deposit on the holiday.

Where does she stand? Would he be laughed out of court as it's his word against hers?

Thank you in advance.

Mendi Sun 01-Sep-13 08:23:20

Unless he can show that it was a loan rather than a gift, I don't think he's got a leg to stand on.

From what you've said it sounds like a gift. To prove it was a loan he'd need some evidence such as an email or his account of a conversation in which he said "I will loan you the money" and/or she agreed to repay him. If he had an email or text to that effect, he may be able to work up a reasonable "loan" argument but if he just says she said it, I think he'd be unlikely to succeed.

Also, he can probably cancel the holiday and get most of the money back, as long as the time hasn't come and gone already. If he can do this then he should. Even if he could succeed in the loan argument, he would still be under a duty to mitigate his losses, which would in this case mean cancelling the holiday if possible and thereby losing only the deposit. If a claimant fails to mitigate his losses then a judge can reduce the amount he/she awards, in proportion to the extent to which he/she thinks the claimant has unreasonably failed to mitigate his losses.

However, doing "the right thing", can your friend not offer to cover the non-refundable deposit for him? Seems a bit hard to ditch the guy and effectively leave him with no help for the costs of the unwanted holiday.


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