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roommate bailing on the bill

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Junior Member

On July 1st, a girl moved into my apartment. It is a rent by the room contract where each tenant has his or her own individual lease but everyone shares the bills in the apartment. Before we moved into the apartment, she had verbally agreed on several occasions to share the utility and cable bills in the apartment even though they are in my name.

Things did not go very well and we ended up moving out of the apartment on August 10. When I wrote her an email asking her for the money - because we are absolutely not on speaking terms - she wrote back on August 12:

I did not give you a check for the cable/internet because I was not using your account. I still had mine activated until the 21st of July because I was still using the box from my other apartment. When I shut mine off for my other apartment, I no longer had access to cable or the internet at this apartment. In order for me to have been using yours, we would have had to of used a router from your computer and from your cable box. The only thing I owe you for is the electric.

She is right, the internet did not work in her room once she shut off the old service, but does that matter if she never mentioned this until August 12? The cable did work in her room, however, because you don't need a box for it, but she claims not to have used it.

(This may not make any difference, but the other complication is that in court I am willing to bet that she will lie about the verbal agreement. She met one of my colleagues recently and completely lied about what happened in the apartment. I had to tell her everything for the sake of not jeopardizing my reputation with my peers. She also lies to her parents (of which I have text message proof) and says the most shocking things about them and about how they treat her - dad is a pastor who makes sexual comments to his daughters and frequently loses his temper. The only reason I'm including this is to provide as much info as possible, not to be petty. I realize none of this may be helpful, but in case one's character is a factor in a decision like this, I have included it.)

Would I win in court? I know it's not much money for anyone, but it's a couple of weeks worth of food for me, and that makes it worthwhile.


Senior Member
Q: Would I win in court?

A: Who knows? Try it in small claims and see. The standard of evidence in most small claims court is low or nonexistent, so it's a lot of he said/she said crap.

Take your chances.


Junior Member
I think I should have asked if she is in the wrong. I don't want to take someone to court if they haven't done anything wrong.

Does a verbal agreement count for anything in this state?

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