Can my ex-partner seek legal proceedings against me?

Hi Everyone, 

First post here and looking for advice. Apologies for the lengthiness!

I was in a relationship with my ex partner for 2.5 years, we split in April 2018. The ending of our relationship was extremely messy, the short version is that he went to the USA to pursue a book deal (I'm not sure if this was a real thing or not), he was initially meant to be there for 2 weeks but missed his flight, lost his passport and wallet (all my fault of course) and missed each embassy appointment I made for him to get emergency travel documents. At this stage I will point out that he suffers from significant mental health issues. He went to stay with some friends who were extremely worried about him and together we managed to get him home by them taking him to the embassy and me booking a one way flight for him back to London on the same day (his mother was unaware any of this was going on). 

We had essentially ended the relationship before he was back in the UK and so I have never seen him since. I managed to get the money back from him for the flight, however he decided to mark some of those payments as 'loan'. At the time I was struggling to pay my rent and he was being extremely difficult about paying me back- of course in the duration of our relationship, money was exchanged by both parties for various things- so I offered to work out a repayment plan for anything he thought I owed him, once I had this flight money back and could get myself back on the straight and narrow. His response was to tell me to never email him again. In any case I got the full amount back for the flight. 

A year later he started chasing me for money which he loaned me, we have been back and forth, with me saying that I owe him nothing. Eventually he started threatening me with legal action, I was scared so I offered to pay him a small amount each month, just to get him off my back. Since then I have faced financial difficulty and have ceased payments as I have real debts to pay. He is now threatening me again with legal action. He says that the payments he sent me for the flight - marked as 'loan'- are what I need to repay him. This amounts to £400, less than the flight itself and simply a figure he has seemingly plucked out of mid air. I sent his mother a message yesterday to explain the situation and that he was blaming me for the closure of his bank account, he emailed to say if I messaged her again he would call the police. 

I appreciate that this is a confusing situation, but would he have any leg to stand on in seeking legal action against me? I really appreciate your thoughts!


  • TonyMMMTonyMMM Forumite
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    Can he seek legal proceedings against you ?
    Yes, anyone can take anyone else to court - whether he would actually do it, and whether he would win is the real issue.
    Him marking his payments to you as "loan" was quite clever on his part, you making some payments to him (at all) in response was not a clever move, it suggests you accepted a debt exists.
    I would cease ALL contact with him and see what happens - if he starts a small claim against you, then the court can listen to both sides and make a judgement. 
  • CS_LondonCS_London Forumite
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    Thank you, Tony. Yes, the problem is he is very clever and manipulative, something he is using against me. 
    I agree that any acknowledgement I made of the debt by making payments was silly on my part, at the time I wanted to pay him off in order to leave me alone, as I am in a happy relationship with someone else. I've made the decision that I will not be entering into any communication with him again. 
    However, if he proceeds to make a claim against me, is this going to further harm my credit rating? I presume yes but I just want to check as it is a personal issue and not from a company etc...

  • edited 25 March 2020 at 12:41PM
    TonyMMMTonyMMM Forumite
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    edited 25 March 2020 at 12:41PM
    CS_London said:
    However, if he proceeds to make a claim against me, is this going to further harm my credit rating? I presume yes but I just want to check as it is a personal issue and not from a company etc...

    Him just starting proceedings will have no effect.
    I believe it would only be recorded as a CCJ on your credit history IF he won a court judgement against you AND you then failed to pay whatever amount the court awarded within whatever time limit the court imposed..

  • Savvy_SueSavvy_Sue Forumite
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    And IF he goes so far as to take court action against you - which I think will not be possible for the next few months in any case - I'd prepare a clear statement of what happened, how much you spent, how much you paid, what his messages said etc. 
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  • edited 25 March 2020 at 6:47PM
    unholyangelunholyangel Forumite
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    edited 25 March 2020 at 6:47PM
    "hello, police? I'd like to report a crime.....they told my mum on me"
    Yeah, that will go over well. 

    Stop responding to him. Doesn't matter if it was marked as a loan for two reasons. One, there would have to be a repayment plan set up at the time of entering the contract . Loans to family & friends can be enforceable but generally aren't because they don't meet the requirements that would make it enforceable. They're generally on a "pay me back when you can" basis. 

    Second, even if it was a are entitled to offset money owed to you (the flight) against money owed to them (the supposed loan). It's a mechanism recognised in law, with the aim of avoiding court action. 

    And btw....if its only marked as loan then that quite clearly shows it was repayment to you for the flight money you loaned him ;) 
    You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means - Inigo Montoya, The Princess Bride
  • HampshireHHampshireH Forumite
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    Yes as above
    If he has marked it as a loan then he was obviously just making sure you had your loaned money back  ;)

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