Asked in Business Formation and Business Law for Florida

Q: Can I get my 21k back from my friend that I transferred to for business?

I have Transferred 21k to a friend for business opportunity. My friend has played me and will not give my money back. Is it possible to sue him and get my money back? The only evidence I have are through massages.

1 Lawyer Answer
Heather M. Meglino
Heather M. Meglino
  • Orlando, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: It is possible under a claim for unjust enrichment, which I will post below. The difficult part is where there is no written contract (besides text messages) there is no attorney's fees provisions. Meaning you would likely have to go pay an attorney to go after the 21k and not be able to record that money back. You can see if you can get an attorney to do it on contingency (meaning they take a portion if they recover the money) but it is hard to find an attorney to do that for this type of case because even if you get a judgement for the money, it could be uncollectable if they have no money/assets in their name or hide them.

In Florida, a claim for unjust enrichment requires a showing that:

The plaintiff has conferred a benefit on the defendant;

The defendant has knowledge of the benefit;

The defendant has accepted or retained the benefit; and

The circumstances are such that it would be inequitable for the defendant to retain the benefit without paying fair market value for it.

Contracts aside, in the court of equity unjust enrichment is a serious claim. A claim for unjust enrichment is a great option where there is no written contract or where the contract was not reduced to writing. The court will consider all the facts and circumstances of the matter and determine whether it would be fair to award the plaintiff restitution for the benefit conferred to the defendant.

Kevin G. Brick agrees with this answer

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