Can you take someone to court if they owe you money if there is nothing in writing?

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Can you take someone to court if they owe you money if there is nothing in writing?

A friend owes me quite a bit of money he promised he would start paying me back right away. It’ but a been a couple months but I still haven’t gotten any money from him; I’m beginning to think I never will. Is there anyway I can take him to court make him pay back all the money he owes me?

Asked on January 25, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Minnesota

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Legally, an oral (often called verbal) agreement or promise to repay money loaned is enforceable, since an oral contract, more generally, is enforceable. You could therefore sue your friend for breach of contract and seek the money he owes you.

As a practical matter, bear in mind that it can be difficult to prove the existence and the terms of the agreement, if there is nothing in writing and your friend "remembers" things differently; your chance of success, therefore, is not as good as if there was a written agreement.


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