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Friendship Gone Wrong

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I allowed a friend to stay at my house because she had no where else to stay. She said she would only stay for a short time, I was thinking two weeks. It turned out to be seven weeks before I kicked her out. She said she would pay for the time spent here, the long distance she used without asking, the phone card she stole from another frined of mine, the computer keyboard she broke. She has now moved to Seattle and refuses to pay any of this. I have e-mails and ICQ history records stating her as saying she would pay me back. I have receipts and an invoice written up for her. What can I do about getting her to reimburse me? Could I take her to small claims court? Should I contact a collection agency? She has left threatening messages on my answering machine saying she will press charges of harassment. I haven't harassed her, I have blocked her phone number and e-mail address. She still occassionally contacts me through another e-mail address just to be rude. I'm tired of the threats and e-mails, I just want to be reimbursed, what can I do?


Senior Member
Since any attempts to litigate this issue will be much harder than usual, your first question should be "Is it worth it?".

Here are your problems:
1) Any litigation would be expensive and probably unsuccessful. Based on your message, the Idaho court system would have jurisdiction over this issue, but IF you get a judgment, you will have to domesticate it into the state where the debtor has assets (WA). This basically doubles the price of litigation (case in ID, then new filing fee in WA).

2) You say that she agreed to reimburse for these expenses, but do you have any PROOF of this agreement. Your best proof would be a written agreement, spelling out the amount to be paid and any payment terms (you should have more than just 'emails', since they are so easy to fake and alter).

3) Let's take a quick look at your damages:
a) Phone card: Your post says "she stole from another frined of mine". Since it wasn't yours, you have no claim to damages (unless you paid for the card).
b) Long Distance: How much is this claim? Can you convince a court that the calls are hers and no one elses? Can you convince a court that she agreed to reimburse you for them?
c) Accommodations: You said, "She said she would pay for the time spent here". Did you have a specific "$ per day" established for reimbursement? Was it clear, in advance, that she was responsible for this charge? How did you derive the rate?
d) Keyboard: With the current price of keyboards of less than $20.00 (for new), this one is really pretty minor. What was the value of the keyboard at the time 'she broke it'? How old was the keyboard? How much did you spend to replace it?

Bottom line:
Unless you have a lot of proof that she agreed to reimburse you, and unless the amount in question is enough (over $1000.00??), it sounds to me like it would be more cost and hassle than it is worth to prosecute this case. Escpecially considering the out of jurisdiction issues. But it is your call on whether you want to pursue this or not.
If you do decide to, I suggest you click on:

Best of luck to you.

As for the phone card, it was someone elses, so you can't litigate for that. You might be able to claim for "tim

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