We broke up and she refuses to pay me back. I am suing her in small claims court (in CT). Her lawyer's response to the suit is "Plaintiff alleges an oral agreement to repay $3,657.50 as basis of claim. Special Defense: The Statute of Frauds states that any agreement for an amount in excess of $500 must be in writing".
I researched the CT State Statutes and Chapter 923 Statute of Frauds and it states in Sec. 52-550. Statute of frauds; written agreement or memorandum. (a) No civil action may be maintained in the following cases unless the agreement, or a memorandum of the agreement, is made in writing and signed by the party, or the agent of the party, to be charged: (1)...(2)...(6) upon any agreement for a loan in an amount which exceeds fifty thousand dollars. Which limit is right?
Consumer Protection Attorney
There are different statutes of fraud for different kinds of contracts. $500 is the limit for contracts to buy or sell things. You have the right statute for a loan agreement. So, gou are right on the law. Proving the loan and collecting the debt is going to be another matter.
Contracts / Agreements Lawyer
That is very good that you researched this. Normally, an oral agreement is
a valid agreement so long as there is an offer, acceptance, and
consideration. However, considering this is CT, you may be best to speak to
a CT lawyer to ensure you have enough law to counter your ex-girlfriend's
position. However, if recognized in CT as a valid, you may have an
additional count for unjust enrichment. Though, to ascertain this and the
confirmation as whether your oral agreement meets the minimum standards in
CT, it is highly recommended to speak to a licensed CT attorney.