I'm dealing with a monetary situation, and I'm curious what others would do in my position. This may be a little long, since I don't know what specifics might sway your decision, so I'll include a summary at the bottom if you want to skip there.
Before meeting DH, I had lived with Ex-BF for three years. He lives on disability checks ($615/month) due to several serious illnesses, and I'm a student, so we lived rather...er...frugally. I always paid the rent in full because the landlord preferred one check. I also paid utilities, and he would pay for groceries. At the end of the month, I would tally what each person owed the other for their share of these expenses, and whoever owed the most would pay the other person the difference.
When I went back to school, the monthly tallies became every two months, and sometimes as much as every five months, because I was just so busy. Settling up promptly didn't seem to matter much, because we intended to stay together "forever" anyway, so it would all get done eventually. At the time we broke up, he owed me $2-3000. This isn't an enormous amount, but it was half my savings at the time and even now would help with some medical bills that we're expecting to have to pay.
When we broke up, we had already re-upped our lease for another year, so we remained roommates during that time, and on good terms. The payment situation also remained the same. However, I pointed out that it was more important to me now that we settle the amount that he owed me. At this point, he informed me that he didn't have the money to pay me back. One of the requirements of being on disability is that you can't have over a certain amount of money in the bank, and when he came close to that amount, he removed the money from the bank and spent it, rather than lose his disability checks. Because after basic living expenses he only has about $40 to spend per month, there's no way he'll basically ever
be able to put together the $2-3000 he owes me.
I said that he knew he owed me money and should have written me a check instead of spending that money. He claims that because I was late in doing the expenses and didn't have an exact amount for him, he couldn't write a check and therefore this situation is entirely my fault. Although he acknowledges that he owes me the money, he seems to feel that because of his financial situation, he just can't pay me back, so oh well. I feel that I basically paid his rent for the last year without ever agreeing to this, and I'm not okay with being fleeced like this.
Although he's allowed to get a job and work up to a certain number of hours a week for extra money, he's made no move to do this in order to make a dent in his debt. He claims that working in public would injure his immune system further and end up putting him in the hospital with an infection, but given that he spends all day every day in public and does a great deal of strenuous exercise, that excuse is feeling pretty shoddy to me.
He also said that he was going to ask each of his (divorced) parents for a small loan in order to pay me back, and his father agreed to send him what he could spare, but made it clear that it was a one-time gift and that he couldn't expect anything else from him. I know that he sent him a check for $700 (I stumbled upon it accidentally while looking for the phone bill), but I never saw a penny of it. At the same time, he and his new GF moved into a much nicer place and furnished it, and I suspect that that $700 given to him to pay me back got spent on the new place instead. I didn't say anything because it was just before the wedding, and I was sort of hoping that we'd get a card from him with a big check in it. Instead he came to the wedding, congratulated us, ate the food, and didn't even give us a card.
Since the wedding, he's written me several times, asking if I want to grab lunch, etc., that our friendship is important to him and he wants to stay friends. But when I bring up the money, his response is a friendly but matter-of-fact statement that he doesn't have the money, and that I can't reasonably expect it since he has so little to live on. In his mind, the matter's closed and he has no responsibility to pay me back.
So what would you do? In my mind, the friendship's over. I think anyone who's willing to borrow $3000 from a "friend" and refuse to repay it without a second thought isn't a friend, pure and simple. But at this point...would it be worth it to you to fight for that much money? Would I end up spending that much in legal fees anyway? Especially because there really aren't any wages that could be garnished....
Summary: Ex-BF owes me $2-3000 for his share of rent from the time we were living together. Although perfectly cheerful and friendly still, he seems to feel no need to pay this money back, even after multiple discussions about it. Would you attempt to get this much money back by legal means, or just drop the topic and the friendship?